December 1, 2019

Graphical Component Tester

I've got this amazing tool for a while, I never really talked about it, so I think it's time. It's a component tester, relatively cheap, but quite surprising in terms of capabilities. It works on transistors, LEDs, inductors, capacitors, resistors, diodes, among a few others. It can detect the component and present it in a graphical way, providing its basic properties. For instance, it can give you LCR meter readings, distinguish between BJT and MOSFET transistors, NPN or PNP transistors, detect their gain and threshold voltage, and measure a diode's forward voltage. It's quite useful actually, although it typically comes just as a PCB with an LCD, which makes it a bit unpractical to use. And for that reason, I decided to design a 3D printed case for it and the 9V battery that powers it.

August 15, 2019

eLab Hackerspace PCB Rulers

Having a PCB ruler in the hackerspace has always been an interest at our hackerspace, but we never actuallly designed one, until now. PCBWay has kindly offered to make some of our PCB rulers. There are quite a lot of PCB rulers out there, but I always thought they could look better, so I designed my own, and thus something that is both useful but equally beautiful. And since eLab hackerspace logo is black and white, it only made sense to use a supper cool matte black soldermask with white silkscreen. As for the copper layers, nothing looks better than gold on black! You can get your own here!

December 13, 2016

GearBest Decaker Micro Laser Engraver Review

A few months ago I was given this DECAKER Micro Laser Engraver by GearBest to make a review and I have finally had some time to do it, so here it is. Starting with a few basic information, this engraver has a 1W laser head and the engraving area it's only about 38x38 mm, but enough for a laser engraving amateur like me, at least for now.
That said, it won't work on metal, ceramics, stone or reflective materials, but it'll do just fine in wood, plastic, paper and leather. The engraver comes mostly assembled and is almost ready to use, which is certainly an advantage.

March 5, 2016

Lisbon Maker Faire 2015

Now this post is long overdue! And, since this year's Maker Faire will be in June, I think it's time to revisit last year's event. It took place on the 18th, 19th and 20th of September and it surpassed all expectations, welcoming over 14000 visitors!
This was the second edition of the event and many things were improved since the first one, most noticeably the dropping of the "Mini" adjective from its name, being this second one a full scale Maker Faire.

November 29, 2015

Ion Thruster

One of the cool projects I've worked on this summer was this Ionic Thruster. After seeing the original idea on Make Magazine by Alexander Reifsnyder, I was amazed to see it work so I decided to build my own version!
To make use of the tools I had available I decided to build the entire structure using 3D printing. This way not only would be a more simple build but it would also be easily replicable. I already did a full article about this project on eLab Hackerspace's blog, but I'm going to summarize it here anyway.