Hacked Gadgets Forum

August 21, 2015

Reflow Part Melting

at 10:54 am. Filed under Educational, Electronic Hacks


You need to be careful when reflowing parts on your circuit boards. Different plastics can lead to a bad day for you parts. If a part was just meant to be wave soldered the actual part may not be capable of the extreme heat and duration of the reflow process. Dave found this out the hard way when he was attempting to reflow a board from a TV that was being repaired.


August 14, 2015

How a CPU Works

at 2:24 pm. Filed under Educational


Here is a great video that explains how a conventional CPU operates. Now of course when we are dealing with a microcontroller most of this is on the single chip. This Visual Transistor-level Simulation is interesting to see what is going on.

May 20, 2015

Cheap PCB Isolation Milling

at 2:05 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks, Educational

Cheap PCB Isolation Milling


If you like making your own printed circuit boards and have a CNC machine wouldn’t it be nice to do some Cheap PCB Isolation Milling? Well how is free, that’s right  has put together an Instructable that goes through the process using only free software.  Below will show you all the things you need.

“Things you need:

  • computer with internet connection
  • cnc mill/router, the more accurate the better
  • 45°/20° V-Bit
  • 0.8mm drill bit
  • 3mm endmill
  • copper clad board
  • double-sided adhesive tape

You need the following software:

November 5, 2014

How Vacuum Tubes Work and How they are Made

at 1:51 pm. Filed under Educational


With the reliability of modern electronics vacuum tube making is a dying art. Here are some great videos demonstrating the laborious steps that go into creating them.

“Vacuum tubes mostly rely on thermionic emission of electrons from a hot filament or a cathode heated by the filament. This type is called a thermionic tube or thermionic valve. A phototube, however, achieves electron emission through the photoelectric effect. Not all electron tubes contain vacuum: gas-filled tubes are devices that rely on the properties of a discharge through an ionized gas.”





October 18, 2014

Fast Charging Batteries that last 20 Years?

at 8:44 am. Filed under Educational, Insane Equipment

 Fast Charging Batteries that last 20 Years


Apple is famous for making nice looking products that are practically sealed for life even though many of us consider the internal battery a serviceable part. Having to access batteries for occasional replacement might be a thing of the past. Also planning to charge items is currently something that revolves around many things, you probably plan to charge your phone while you sleep, your electric car gets topped up when you are at work, you have a few sets of batteries for your cordless power tools. Wouldn’t it be nice it charging took a few minutes instead of many hours? How about a battery that lasts 20 years, which is typically more than the entire usable life of the device? This might not be science fiction for much longer. Scientists at Nanyang Technology University have developed fast charging batteries that can be recharged up to 70 per cent in only two minutes!

Thanks for the tip John.

“In the new NTU-developed battery, the traditional graphite used for the anode (negative pole) in lithium-ion batteries is replaced with a new gel material made from titanium dioxide.

Titanium dioxide is an abundant, cheap and safe material found in soil. It is commonly used as a food additive or in sunscreen lotions to absorb harmful ultraviolet rays.

Naturally found in spherical shape, the NTU team has found a way to transform the titanium dioxide into tiny nanotubes, which is a thousand times thinner than the diameter of a human hair. This speeds up the chemical reactions taking place in the new battery, allowing for superfast charging.”


Fast Charging Batteries that last 20 Years_2

October 5, 2014

Making of an Arduino

at 7:10 pm. Filed under Educational

Making of an Arduino


This video by designboom gives us a glimpse into the making of an Arduino PCB. Arduino boards are still produced in Italy! You can see an interesting picture (last one at the bottom) which shows an arduino in a programming and test fixture. I am quite surprised to see that they are programmed individually, I would have though there might have been either a large program and test system which would have done a panel at a time or an automated line where they were just fed in one end and came out the other end with a pass or fail indication.

“who would ever imagine that global cultural and economic revolution would spring from the tranquil fields of piedmont, italy, in tiny towns nestled against the stunning backdrop of the alps? but that’s exactly where arduino, the system of microcontrollers revolutionzing the maker movement and pioneering the concept of opensource hardware, was born in 2005 and continues to make its home today.”



Making of an Arduino_2


Making of an Arduino_3


September 8, 2014

How Ferrite Beads Work – EMI Suppression

at 8:40 pm. Filed under Educational

How Ferrite Beads Work - EMI Suppression_4


If you are working on a project where you want to get rid of EMI from entering an input you might want to look into using some ferrite beads, they can help you out in removing high frequency noise from your circuit. The ferrite looks like a variable resistor that has no impact on your circuit at low infrequence and starts to conduct to short out higher frequencies. It does this by converting the energy that is suppressed into heat.

“Ferrite beads prevent interference in two directions: from a device or to a device. A conductive cable acts as an antenna if the device produces radio frequency energy, this can be transmitted through the cable, which acts as an unintentional radiator. In this case the bead is required for regulatory compliance, to reduce EMI. Conversely, if there are other sources of EMI, such as household appliances, the bead prevents the cable from acting as an antenna and receiving interference from these other devices. This is particularly common on data cables and on medical equipment.”




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