beginner-friendly electronics tutorials and projects

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What have we done?!

August 9, 2019 overview

In the last couple of weeks we have accumulated quite a few articles and projects! Time to list them all in a better way to make everything more organized :) I hope that this post is useful for anybody who stumbles upon FriendlyWire and wants to get a streamlined presentation of what we have covered here so far. Also, I will update this post with every new upload and article so that it is always up to date!

Below I listed all projects, tutorials, and articles you can find on this website. If you are new to electronics, in each section you can read the articles from top to bottom. They are not always ordered chronologically, but pedagogically. Articles further down are more involved, articles at the top of the list are more basic.

I also ordered everything by topics: I started with projects, and then I listed introductory material for PIC microcontrollers, followed by the electronic components 101 series, and at the end I collect various guides and articles that don't really fit any other category (but might still be interesting to read, I hope).

And now: get out there and explore the wonderful world of electronics :)

PIC microcontroller projects

These are complete projects involving detailed explanations of software, schematics, and building instructions.

  1. Build your own electronic dice! (June 7, 2019)
  2. How to build a binary clock (July 29, 2019)
  3. A realistic, flickering electronic candle (December 15, 2019)
  4. How to make a scrolling text display (March 3, 2020)
  5. Building an analog clock with a microcontroller (April 30, 2022)
  6. How to build a better binary clock (November 18, 2019)

Electronics projects without microcontrollers

Microcontrollers are fun, but it can also be rewarding to build circuits and projects without them!

  1. CD4017 code lock with wrong code detection (February 28, 2021)

Introduction to PIC microcontrollers

Start here if you want to know what a microcontroller is, and how you can use them in your own projects!

  1. How to “flash” a PIC microcontroller? (April 12, 2019)
  2. How to get source code on a PIC microcontroller (November 6, 2021)
  3. Your first microcontroller program! (April 19, 2019)
  4. Make an LED blink: your first simple PIC microcontroller project! (April 26, 2019)
  5. How to read out a pushbutton with a PIC microcontroller (May 24, 2019)
  6. What makes a microcontroller tick? (June 21, 2019)
  7. Programming a 1Hz clock signal (July 5, 2019)
  8. How to adjust LED brightness with a PIC microcontroller (August 2, 2019)
  9. How to configure your PIC microcontroller (August 17, 2019)
  10. Use RS232 to connect your microcontroller to a computer or another controller (September 20, 2019; updated: April 26, 2020)
  11. More microcontroller outputs with shift registers (September 29, 2019)
  12. Understanding analog to digital converters (December 8, 2019)
  13. How to use light-dependent resistors (LDRs) with microcontrollers (January 13, 2020)
  14. Understanding digital to analog converters (January 19, 2020)
  15. Breadboard capacitive touch sensor tutorial (May 15, 2021)
  16. Three wires to rule them all: CD4094 & CD4021 shift register tutorial (December 17, 2022)
  17. How to use rotary encoders (May 27, 2023)

Electronic components 101

In these articles I collect basic information on electronic components.

  1. LEDs 101 - what do you need to know? (March 29, 2019)
  2. Breadboards 101 - What do you need to know? (May 3, 2019)
  3. Buttons and switches 101 (May 18, 2019)
  4. Schematics 101 - how to read them and not get overwhelmed (May 31, 2019)
  5. CMOS 101 - Understanding integrated circuits of the CMOS family (October 4, 2019)
  6. How do old school analog panel meters work? (October 27, 2019)
  7. CD4026 decimal counter tutorial (November 17, 2019)
  8. Drivers 101 - learning how to control large loads with a small microcontroller (December 23, 2019)
  9. NE555 tutorial: three useful circuits (June 20, 2020)
  10. TLC5916 tutorial: best breadboard 7-segment LED driver! (July 24, 2020)
  11. CD4017 tutorial: the IC you can count on! (October 7, 2020)
  12. DS1302 real-time clock tutorial: the clock that doesn't forget the time! (November 4, 2020)
  13. Your own electronics lab... in a tray! (December 19, 2021)

Guides and general articles

Anything else that does not fit a category above.

  1. Vintage computers and terminals from the 1980s (February 14, 2020)
  2. Learn binary! (October 18, 2019)
  3. What is your favorite electronic display? (October 11, 2019)
  4. Where can you buy electronic components? (July 12, 2019)
  5. How to choose the right power supply? (June 28, 2019)
  6. Useful software in hobby electronics (April 5, 2019)
  7. Soldering vs. breadboard layouts (March 22, 2019)
  8. 5 things I wish I knew when I started learning electronics (March 15, 2019)

Anything else?

Now it's your turn! What is missing? What would you like to learn about next? Get in touch on social media and let me know :)

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  • electronics
  • beginner-friendly
  • tutorial
  • PIC
  • microcontroller
  • how-to
  • projects
  • articles