I love Ardunio. I love the things that people make with them and I love to make my own. Last August I published an Instructable on how to make your own postage stamp sized Arduino compatible. This Instructable will show you how to to make a rugged, versatile Ardunio compatible with basic components on board. It will be more suitable for deployment in the real world than a bread board attached to a development board. This video is from the Kickstarter, but you can totally make your own.

This open source hardware project is licensed Creative Commons CC-BY. Part of my philosophy of open source hardware means I don't consider a design released without detailed build instructions. Instructables is my favorite place to release those Instructions.

Why don't I just stick with an Arduino, some shields, a breadboard and components like people usually do?
Take a look through some Arduino projects with LCDs. A lot of those projects are still on breadboards. They do amazing things, but they have some challenges.
  • Delicate connections may not survive long in the real world
  • Hard to move
  • Hard to duplicate
  • Development board is now trapped in the project
  • Your friend wants one, but you don't want to give them something that needs fixing all the time
  • Your Mom looks at it wrong and it breaks. (True story. [Hi Mom!])
How can I solve those problems?
Follow along and you can make your own Arduino Compatible in an enclosure with on board screen, controls, speaker, USB and some other goodies.

Cool, I want to make one! How hard will this be?
This is a somewhat challenging project that involves surface mount soldering. If you ever built an Arduino from components on a bread board or made your own circuit board you probably have all the skills you need. These instructions include all the parts lists and design files you need to create an Arduino compatible board.

I still want one but I'm not sure I have the time or skills.
We have a Kickstarter running until Monday July 2nd, 2012.


Step 1: Gather tools and software

  • Basic familiarity with Arduino environment and programming.
  • Enough electrical engineering know-how to read instructions and put together circuits.
  • Basic Soldering skills and a willingness to and ability to work with surface mount soldering.

Physical Tools
  •     Electric skillet or griddle
  •     Good ventilation
  •     Fine tweezers that are not even a little magnetized. Plastic is OK.
  •     Big tweezers/hemostat or some other way of moving circuit boards that can take 400 degrees F. Magetized is OK, clearly plastic is not.
  •     Magnifying glass and/or loupe.
  •     Solder paste
  •     Syringe or heavy duty zip top bag with a needle hole in the corner for applying paste
  •     Sewing needle
  •     Soldering Iron (Adjustable if at all possible)
  •     Fine solder wick
  •     Sharp knife (hobby knife)
  •     Wire strippers
  •     Multi Meter
  •     Any arduino compatible or ISP known to work with Atmega chips. These instructions assume an Arduino loaded with ArduinoISP
  • Some male to female breadboard jumpers.
  •  A PC, these instructions assume windows. Linux will also work for sure.
  • (Optional) Helping hands or a vice for holding the PCB while you solder it.

About This Instructable


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