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Makers, to your soldering irons!

Techmog is a liquid network of engineers, programmers, designers and entrepreneurs in and around London who report on the industry we work in, from an insider's view. We're always looking for Londoners with something interesting to say. Send an email to info@techmog.com if you would like to contribute to the website.

Lily

Creative Technologist, maker, writer, geek. @Lily_2point0
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Check out: Arduino Day 2015

As a maker, your soldering iron is an essential part of your toolkit. The problem is, using solderless breadboards is so easy that it doesn’t see much action and ends up gathering dust in the corner of your workbench. Through their campaign A Kit A Month, Pocketmoneytronics will deliver 5 different small circuits through the post for you to solder. With these fun PCBs, you could even teach the young makers in your house how to do it themselves.

photo-original

The project does exactly what it says on the tin; offer “Electronics fun at pocket money prices” once a month for 5 (nonconsecutive) months. The man behind it all, Andrew Gale, knows that the secret to cheap electronics is to buy in bulk.

Making affordable electronics kits like these is really only viable when there’s enough people interested in using them. Components are expensive when bought in small quantities and manufacturing PCBs is prohibitively expensive unless I get lots made. With enough support from Kickstarter backers, this should make an original, viable project.

His new Kickstarter campaign implements this theory, delivering to your door all the necessary parts (and some extras) to get your soldering skills up-to-scratch and discover electronics components in 5 mini projects. Isn’t it nice to get something other than a bill in the mail? Unlike those partwork magazines that you have to buy for weeks before you assemble the finished product, this promises a full circuit out of every envelope. From Nellie the 9-volt robot badge and LED games, to a mini Christmas tree, all these goodies should arrive with time to spare – and solder – before the festive season, and keep you entertained over the summer break.

Third hands and vices at the ready! The soldering fun should start in April (if you’re in the UK). This could be addictive and we hope there will be more circuits to build after the first five. If you need to brush up on your soldering technique, it will pair up nicely with Soldering is Easy, a comprehensive comic book. Also check out Adafruit’s guide to excellent soldering for advice. Happy making!

Posted 11th Mar 2015
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