Author Options:

Hackduino-like thing help!? Answered

First a little background to help you understand whats going on...
I live in the Philippines, i grew up here and part of my hobby is Electronics. I usually scrounge up parts due to the fact that parts are kinda outta my reach and it's a shame to let all that money go to waste when i can find salvaged parts. Recently, i got the idea of programming and searched around 'ibles for pojects on TI's MCUs. Finding none, i thought it wouldn't be worth the effort to try to program one of these with lack of info so i thought "what about the arduino?". Arduinos are kinda popular here but one thing sets me back.
Getting one.
So since my mom won't let me get an arduino (i'm a High school student), i need to resort to making one. Most of my sample requests from Atmel have been denied so it's time to quit being a cheapskate just for arduino! (and for science yay!)

I sourced some parts, haven't bought the most important ATmega328 (it's kinda big but better get it than upgrading) and i'm starting to prepare. I read the HackDuino and i just need some help and info such as:
* How do i make an arduino using common electronic parts?
* What schematic will i use that will allow me to upload using a serial port?
* How will i prepare the chip without another arduino? (I heard about bootloaders and stuff)
I have lots of questions, but if you know some arduino tips and facts, you may throw it in
Thanks in advance


A standalone "Arduino" is simply an ATMega328 with the Arduino bootloader on it, a crystal/clock source and a serial interface - use one of the FTDI cables, or hunt for one of the mobile phone cables which does the same thing.
That's it. End of story.

You  THEN have to make a parallel programmer to load the bootloader on to the chip, before it becomes compatible with the arduino code base. 


Thanks for all your help. I managed to track down a standalone arduino on their website and got the schematic below. It gets programmed through the serial port but i still need to bootload the chip (just as Steve said). I do have the parallel port programmer ready for bootloading and i have arduino installed on my PC. All that's left is designing the PCB (holy shoot so hard!) and getting all the components ready (i estimated it'll cost about 200 pesos (4 USD) total)

Just for added info, I am making an arduino from scavenged materials, which means i am not buying kits and arduino clones. I did some research, you can bootload a chip using a parallel programmer and i know how. One question remains: Where is the schematic for a standalone arduino? (the arduino with a serial port for programming)

Also, the Ardweeny from Solarbotics is a $10 USD kit that comes with the ATmega328 and all of the support devices.

You may also need the FTDI basic breakout for 13.95 USD which does the USB to Serial conversion.

Ardweeny: http://www.solarbotics.com/products/kardw/
FTDI basic breakout: http://www.solarbotics.com/products/50512/

I like these since they are a nice little package that I think is cheaper than buying the components separately.

As https://www.instructables.com/id/The-RRRRRRRRRRBA-or-What-They-Dont-Teach-You-in-/ points out, it's possible to _run_ the ATMega chip standalone or with a minimum number of external components. Getting the bootloader installed, and feeding the program into it, is the most difficult part.

There are a number of kit-form Arduino clones for around US$30, which come with a chip that already has the bootloader. That may be your best bet.

You can buy the chip for 5 USD on its own too.
Once you've got that, building a cloner is easy.