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Workshops

Workshops are SARC group activities where members work on electronics, soldering and microcontroller projects. Each workshop has workshop notes. You can download and use them for free. Please observe all safety warnings and only work under adult supervision. Don't forget to have a lot of fun creating your own circuits and programs!

Electronics Workshops

Electronics workshop include prototyping electronic circuits with reusable electronic components and a prototyping board. There is no soldering required!

To get started and learn how to prototype, please download our electronics prototyping workshop presentation.

Then you can then download the workshop notes for the following workshops:

  • Flasher Circuit
  • Flip Flop Circuit
  • Toggle Circuit
  • Tester Circuit
  • Super Tester Circuit
  • Timer Circuit

Soldering Workshops

Soldering workshops include learning safe soldering techniques including for Plated Through Hole and Surface Mount Technologies.

Plated Through Hole Practice PCBPlated Through Hole (PTH) practice workshop. In this workshop we simply populate a double-sided PCB with resistors. Lots and lots of resistors! They have to be perfectly aligned in rows, with their colour codes all facing the same way and beautifully soldered with shiny concave fillets. Not too much solder and not too little. We inspect each side of the board to asses good solder penetration. By the time you have finished, you will be soldering like a professional. 

Flashin LED ProjectFlasher PCB kit assembly workshop. This is our first electronics kit. The booklet also contains the setup of a standard soldering station, including all the safety equipment and instructions. It is a PCB with two flashing blue LEDs. All the components and the PCB are included in your kit. When you have built up the kit you can mount it behind the eyes of a cardboard model. You can even make "The Hypnotic Owl" - Cue spooky music.

SMT Practice PCBSurface Mount Technology (SMT) practice workshop. For this workshop you will need your standard soldering station, but with a fine soldering iron tip, a strong magnifying glass and a set of tweezers. You guessed it, SMT components are tiny: You can have literally hours of fun searching in the carpet for a component that went "twang" after it slipped out of your tweezers! If you populate the practice PCB correctly you can connect a battery to it and see the SMT LED illuminate.

SMT DIce ProjectSMT Electronic Dice PCB assembly workshop. Now that you have practiced SMT soldering it is time to build up a kit of your own. This kit is an electronics touch dice. It works off a 9 volt battery. By just touching the two contacts on the front of the PCB with your finger, it sets the 7 LEDs in motion. They eventually slow down and stop flashing to reveal a random number from 1 to 6, displayed in the same pattern as used on a real dice. You can use this circuit with your favourite game of chance.

Christmas Tree LED ProjectPTH Mini Christmas Tree PCB assembly workshop. For the more advanced constructor, and great as a project over the Christmas break, you can tackle this Mini Christmas Tree LED project . Powered by 3 AA cells, or from the USB port of your laptop, this multi-coloured display looks really fantastic on the mantle-piece at Christmas.

Microcontroller Workshops

Microcontroller workshops include learning to program and use an Arduino Pro Micro.

  • Setting up the Arduino Pro Micro prototyping board and the Arduino Integrated Development Environment (IDE)
  • Your first "Blink" program
  • Traffic Lights program
  • On/Off Switch program
  • Toggle Switch program
  • For the more advanced programmer please download our Arduino for Amateur Radio Presentation.

Computer Workshops

Computer workshops include learning to assemble the computer hardware and install the software.

  • Computer components, what they do and how they work
  • Installing the CPU and memory: Precautions for static sensitive components
  • Computer interfaces and connecting cables
  • Assembling the computer
  • Starting up the computer and setting the Basic Input Output System (BIOS)
  • Downloading a free Linux operating system
  • Installing the operating system
  • Configuring the computer and computer applications