Arduino Prototyping Shield on the Cheap





Introduction: Arduino Prototyping Shield on the Cheap

Breadboards are very handy, but sometimes I just want to connect one IC or some LEDs and resistors to the controller.

My simple solution was to canibalize a cheap Breadboard to get two expandable PrototypingShields with some additional features.

What I used:
Breadboard (~3$)
2 Pieces of Veroboard (<1$)
28 PinHeader (<1$)
28 femaleConnectors (<1$)
2 Leds
some Resistors...
and some epoxy to get it smooth and fixed

Soldering iron
a knife

Step 1: Soldering the Shield

Sadly the ArduinoBoard doesn't align with the standard 0.1" spacing, so it's a little tricky to get the Shield smoothly into the Arduino connectors.

Firstly I cutted the right number of pinheaders.
After putting them into the Arduino connectors, I saw the difference to my 0.1" spaced veroboard.

I bent the headers a little bit as you can see in the second picture.

Now the pins are ready to solder.

As you can see in Pic4 I cutted the veroboard with one hole space to the border, to solder the female connectors later.

Step 2: Cut the Breadboard

Next step was to cut the breadboard.
Very stinky, but effective with a Dremel on 10.000rpm :)

I removed one row of the power connectors for the right size.
It fits just perfect!

I also made a little cut on the veroboard to disconnect the pins.

Step 3: Isolate and Glue the Breadboard

I used a thin coat of 5min epoxy to isolate the bottom side of the breadboard.

After 5 minutes I did the same again and glued the breadboard to the veroboard.

Step 4: Adding Some Features

I wanted to have the same nice features as the Arduino has.
- Led as power indicator
- Led connected to Pin13 for debugging
- Resetswitch

The Leds are connected through a resistor to +5V and Pin13
The ResetButton is connected to Gnd and the ResetPin

I used a 820ohm resistor for small power consumption and right brightness.
I = U/R = 5V/820ohm = 6mA

I used some epoxy to cover the leds, hold the button and give the board a smooth surface.

That's it.

Hey Mauseju... if you read this, you'll soon be the owner of the second board I just made for you ;-))



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    what was the width of the breadboard after you removed the power rail?

    I have a veroboard that only has holes. Your board appears to have strips of holes connected. Mine doesn't. What can I do?

    It's pretty much the same. The circuitBoard under the protoBoard just connects the pinHeader with the female header. So board layout doesn't matter.

    How did you solder the male headers on the copper side of the board as in pic 4 and pic 5.

    You can buy breadboards in this size. You don't have to cut on a larger one.

    Thanks for your comment ! But the small ones are about 5$. I can get 3 small ones out of this 3$ breadboard. Regards, jo

    Eh, damn, one big breadboard like yours costs 17$ in my country -_-

    Here in Finland they don't even sell those mini breadboards. And maybe the cheapest one is about 7€ witch is about 10$.. =/

    nah if you'r in seed studio its about 3 bucks and if u buy a bulk pack its like 1$ each. ANYWAY NICE instructable... :) good job