Weekly Update 11-22-16 to 12-9-16

This is another weekly update that is conspicuously longer than a week, and it’s coming out weeks after the dates in question but this is the sort of thing that happens at the end of the semester. I did not have time to do a lot of work and I definitely did not have time to talk about the work I was doing.

I’ll start with the big new, I assembled two Sharkduino V2s. These are the boards with the all new form factor and new sensors. They went together pretty quickly and easily. I used solder stencils this time which made things alot easier even though I am still working out some kinks in my stenciling process. I can normally get solder of the annoying small IC pads but sooner or later I’ll shift something and have to take the stencil off and finish putting solder paste on by hand. I have some ideas on how to improve this process that I will try when I get back to school. With the solder stencils though it is becoming more feasible to assemble a lot of sharkduinos and we can start considering a small production testing run, maybe something like 10 or 12 boards at the same time. Before we can do that we will need to more fully test the design, there are already a few things about it that I don’t like and want to change for the 2.1 model. The most notable of these is that at the last minute I added header pins to break out the power lines in order to easily add inductive charging to the device. The problem is I put these headers on the regulated side of the the LiPo charger so I will need an external LiPo charging chip in addition to the charger if I want to use those pins. This is an example of why you should not make last minute changes to a board. To prevent this sort of mistake happening again I took my informal board checking procedure I do before ordering and bulked them up and wrote them out into formal procedures.

Sharkduino V2 without an Arduino

Sharkduino V2 without an Arduino

Fully assembled Sharkduino V2

Fully assembled Sharkduino V2

In addition to assembling the sharkduino V2s most of the work I’ve been doing has been pretty boring. I’ve written documentation about the v2 boards, and I have spruced up the documentation about some of the other boards. I also wrote a python script to more easily create bills of materials to upload into digikey. Outside of that there were meeting, and planning, and budgeting stuff that I did.

That is all for the semester. I will be taking a break from the blog for winter break and will be back in January for another semester of Sharkduino.