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Goodies from Wright Hobbies

WriteHobbiesGoodiesPile I just got a pile of goodies from Wright Hobbies. I plan on using this stuff in upcoming projects and would welcome any suggestions.  Eddy Wright contacted me about getting a reciprocal link on uCHobby so I checked out his site. Wright Hobbies focuses on robotics and offers a nice starter kit for microcontroller development with the ATMega32. He also offers several interesting items such as motor driver IC’s and software tools of interest to electronics and microcontroller hobbyist. I picked up a few interesting items and gladly add a link to Wright Hobbies.

DevBoard M32 Starter Kit
The board is small like an Arduino but the included ATMega32 has more memory. 32K of Flash and 2K of RAM, which is twice the amount available on the ATMega168 normally used for the Arduino. Has the Arduino package can be ported to the ATMega32?

The DevBoard M32 Starter Kit includes a general purpose AVR programmer, compilers, and instructions to get setup doing direct AVR development. Since this kit would get me all setup for basic AVR development, I purchased several other AVR microcontrollers in DIP packages. I got an ATMega48, ATMega8L, ATTiny13, ATTiny13V, ATTiny2313, and ATTiny26. I am especially interested in what can be done with the ATTiny parts. They cost about $1.50 and can surly be used in lots of small applications. All of these microcontrollers are in dip packages so it should be easy to bring them up on a breadboard. I also picked up a resonator to make the oscillator circuit.

Some other interesting parts I picked up include a 1 Farad (yes 1 Farad) Aerogel Super Capacitor, Some H-Bridge parts (FAN8200, SN754410NE, and TA8050P), some prototyping PCB boards, and a PCI parallel+2 serial port board. Lastly I got a few LCD displays to evaluate. 

I got the super cap just to see what 1 Farad felt like. The H-Bridge parts will come in handy when I need to drive a high current load or more specifically provide forward and reverse power to a DC motor. The prototyping boards look ideal to solder up small projects and can be broken down via a light score line for single IC type projects. Lastly the PCI interface board solves the missing parallel and serial ports problem on the modern PC. The board only cost $15 so it’s a very reasonable way to get these very handy ports for microcontroller hobbyist.

This article might seem like an advertisement for Wright Hobbies. While I do hope that this article sends some business to Wright Hobbies it was not a paid article or review. I purchased the items to play with and am linking to Wright Hobbies because I believe they are a great resource for electronics hobbyist.

Posted in Development Tools, Discovering, Electronics Links, Parts, Projects.


12 Responses

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  1. Skater J says

    Hi Leonard check out http://www.wrighthobbies.net or http://www.smileymicros.com which are 2 sites that i’ve found that offer beginner level AVR development kits and have great documentation to get you started. They are both quite affordable due to the free development software and compilers that can be found all over thanks to Atmel and the generous programmers involved with the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC) which is a huge added bonus. http://www.avrfreaks.net has a bunch of info on AVRs if you haven’t been there yet. Hope this helps.

  2. Leonard says

    To all concerned:

    (Looking for newer and versatile AVR development kit)

    Hello, I am looking to get into embedded programming and some co-workers suggested the Atmel AVR. I am a beginner at this and am looking for a develeopment enviroment that, not only will be comfortable starting in, but will also be able to grow into the development boards capacity. I want to use it for robotics, motor drives, LCD, key pad, USB etc.

    What I’m looking for is a all around versitile development kit. I’m hoping that you (Atmel represenative/contact) will be able to guide me in the right direction towards my decision for purchase so I can get started.

    All your help & guidance regarding this matter is greatly appreciated.

  3. Steven Moughan says

    Eddy, dont get me wrong, I wasnt giving out… More thinking out loud, I got some LCD’s and proto boards from them too :p

    I forgot to take into consideration the tax situation between America and China, being in Ireland I dont generally encounter those problems that often…

  4. Berni says

    Neather of that would work because these mini super caps can’t supply a large current. Commercially these things are used to keep memory and run clocks when the power falls out, since they are a lot more reliable than baterys.

    This is why they are small they have a very large internal resistance, compared to the car audio caps for example who have it nearly 0

  5. Daniel says

    Okay I see what you mean, but not sure a screw gun would work because driving a screw requires constant torque and not sure youd make it through a screw(well you could but youd have little to now control of when to stop it accurately)
    A better application in my mind would be a Nail Gun using a rail gun principle. One large shot through a coil, drive a nail. But thanks for the reply Dave, at least I can think of the right application for Farad+ capacitors.

  6. dfowler says

    Hey Daniel… How about a recharable screew gun that may only last 10 minutes but recharges in 2 seconds? Everytime I go to do job with my screw gun it needs a charge. I only need it for a few minutes of work but I have to wait an hour to charge it. Wouldnt it be nice to charge the gun in seconds for a quick job? Mabye a hybrid battery could be made, normal rechargable for the long haul work and ultracaps for the quick work. In fact this might be a great idea, it’s posible that the best battery in terms of charge life is not so good interms of peak current output. Use the weaker rechargable battery to charge the ultracap. Let the ultracap supply the high current needs of the device in burst.

  7. Daniel says

    What do you do with a 1F Cap?, and how is it that it can be so small when the 1F caps for large car stereos are like two coke cans end to end? (build one mean taser I bet)

    Yeah, I bought LCDS from you for me and some friends last night.

  8. Eddy Wright says

    Hi Dave,

    If you like the 1F super cap, I just received some 3.3F caps! They’re about the same size as a 220uF cap and I heard they are used as batteries in some Hotwheels electric cars.

    Steven, I do have a small number of products from Sure Electronics, items that I thought were unique or interesting for electronic hobbyists – a couple of LCD displays and a couple of proto boards.

    Daniel, the white text on blue background LCDs have a very nice look and are bright displays. They are slower to refresh than normal LCDs though.

    And thank you for the kind words Skater J. I’m glad you have enjoyed working with us and I look forward to helping you again in the future.

  9. Skater J says

    I’ve had nothing but good experiences with Wright hobbies. They have great service and support for the beginner/intermediate electronics hobbiest and i was able to get all i needed for my robotic project from them.

    I was able to implement their DevBoard-M32 on my tank threaded robot, as well as the FAN8200 H-bridge Chip. The FAN8200 was able to handle the stall current of my geared 6V toy motors with no issues. The low-dropout 5V regs came in handy too so i could get all the juice possible from my batteries.

    In my travels i haven’t found a microcontroller development kit (besides the AVR Butterfly) that has been at a cheaper price. The other items probably can be found cheaper elsewhere but it’s great that you can find all the items you need to get a microntroller project off the ground (sometimes literally) all in one place.

  10. dfowler says

    Yes it looks like some of his items might be from Sure but watch out on the price compairisons, it cost a lot to get stuff shipped from China, especialy if you are purchasing in small volumes.

  11. Steven Moughan says

    A lot of the stuff that he sells there can be found MUCH CHEAPER through Sure Electronics, who I am assuming is his supplier… http://stores.ebay.ie/Sure-Electronics

  12. Daniel says

    While your evaluating the LCD’s let me know about the backlit blue 20×4, looks pretty good(if thats what you picked up), Think I might give it a try, good price too.