Micro controllers are great, but have you ever wanted to control something bigger then, lets say an LED? If you have, look no further (unless you want more then 0.6Amps for 4 channels, or 2.4Amps for 1 channel), unless you don't mind spending more money. This instructable will be all about building your own, preferably etched, driver shield for the Arduino. It's highly recommended to etch your shield, but not necessary, etching just makes it a lot neater. If you want to etch, but have never done it before, just follow this instructable, I'll made a few steps about etching the shield as well.

It seems like I can't upload any files other than pictures, so here's a link to my dropbox, original files included: http://www.dropbox.com/sh/ihua115tbmmy9h8/6tvqm0G5Ue . The non-shield driver has been made with Diptrace, the shield driver with Fritzling.

This is my very first instructable, so well commented "criticism" is welcome.

Step 1: Things you will need

First of all, the photo's I used are from another etched board. I lost the micro SD card with the photos from this PCB and my etchant isn't working anymore (as you can see by the deep blue color), so I can't make another shield right away.

Things you will need anyhow:
- Arduino Uno/Mega/all others with similar pin configurations
- A power supply that can deliver enough power
- Headers, a lot of them
- Screw terminals
- Normal red LED + 330 ohm resistor
- 16 pin socket (DIP)
- L293N motor driver
- Dremel/hacksaw
- Soldering iron/ solder

If you are going to etch the board (Toner Transfer Method):
- a copper board
- sodium persulfate (or anything else that is used for etching, like ferric chloride, ammonium persulfate, so on)
^- mark the bottle you are storing your etchant in, so people know NOT to drink it!
- Photo paper
- Laser printer capable of printing thick paper
- Something to heat the etch solution (I used a 4ohm resistor salvaged from a car, on a 12V battery, use a BIG resistor or it will melt)
- Very fine sanding paper
- Thinner/acetone
- Iron
- Etch tank/something NOT make out of metal in which you can etch (I used a plastic Chinese food thing)
- A 1mm drill

If you can't/won't etch:
- Prefboard
- Wires

About This Instructable


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Bio: Glider pilot that spends a lot of his time of on electronics.
More by Thom Kouwen: Arduino PMW enabled high power shield or non-shield on the cheap
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