Concept to Finished Piece – Generations of an Electronics Project

I bought an antique telegraph sounder a while back, and I’ve been working on a project that will click out emails from my Etsy store when I get an order. I’ve gone through several generations, and come up with something I really like. What follows is a description of my process for going from concept to finished piece. The code & PCB are open-source, and can be found on my github.
Concept to Finished Piece  Generations of an Electronics Project
Generation 1 – Paper
The end goal I had in mind was to be able to push messages over the network, and have the telegraph sounder tap them out in morse code. I’ve used Arduino as a platform for similar projects before, but wireless communication with the Arduino is either a pain or a significant cost, so I targeted the Raspberry Pi instead. I found a blog talking about the required electronics to make the sounder work, and I worked it out on paper using only a few components.
Generation 2 – Breadboarding
The next step was to get the first prototype. I played around with my circuit on a breadboard until it worked (I went through a few iterations while trying to get the switching mechanism working correctly). I also wrote the code required for the Raspberry Pi.
Generation 3 – Protoboard
I updated the paper schematic, based on the final state of things on the breadboard. There’s a fairly slow turn-around on getting PCBs made, so before I went down that road I set aside the breadboard, and recreated the circuit (on protoboard this time), using the latest schematic. Once that was working, I left it hooked up to the telegraph sounder, and started transferring the design to Eagle CAD, so I could get some real PCBs made.
For more detail: Concept to Finished Piece – Generations of an Electronics Project

About The Author

Ibrar Ayyub

I am an experienced technical writer holding a Master's degree in computer science from BZU Multan, Pakistan University. With a background spanning various industries, particularly in home automation and engineering, I have honed my skills in crafting clear and concise content. Proficient in leveraging infographics and diagrams, I strive to simplify complex concepts for readers. My strength lies in thorough research and presenting information in a structured and logical format.

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