Parts listEdit

  • list of common parts, with pictures we took, and how to put them together


Sparkfun has some pretty good tutorials:


You should use a scope, and multimeter to check your work. See the Soldering Guide for how to properly use a soldering iron. Other tools you should learn how to use:

  • solder-removing suction pump
  • side cutters
  • needle nose pliers
  • wire strippers

Wiring and ConnectorsEdit

Check current rating most importantly. Stranded wire is more flexible and easier to plug and unplug. Plan for about 10 to 15 minutes for someone who knows what they are doing to make a piece of cable with connectors on both ends from scratch.

Electrostatic Discharge ProtectionEdit

ESD can destroy electrical ICs instantly, or weaken them so they fail later (this is undetectable). Knowing how to prevent it and using the proper equipment is important. See Electrostatic Discharge Protection.

Headers, Housings, and Pins (white connectors)Edit


See Soldering Guide. Ensure you've had soldering safety training (refresher):

  • eating and soldering can be dangerous, wash your hands after, lead is bad
  • inhaling fumes is bad
  • the tip is hot... but so is what you're soldering/just soldered. Make sure you and noone else will knock anything onto themselves
  • stand up while soldering
  • always unplug/turn off when not in use

Deans ConnectorsEdit

Always always always pre-tin. Bumpy soldering will hold heatshrink in place. So will superglue, if you glue the heatshrink before you shrink it.

In the past we've used Dean's Ultra connectors, rated to 10A or something high, for our batteries, theres a guide to soldering them here and it's also on dropbox.


Use the soldering iron (after you've had soldering safety training) to heat it. Heatshrink can be used to mechanically reinforce wires and to insulate them.