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Construction

Introduction

Currently this page is a very broad outline of the constructional details of the project and hence only suitable for experienced constructors. A more comprehensive page will be added in due course.
 

Overview

Hardware


Viewable PDF Downloads

If you only need to refer to the project's schematic or PCB layout, they are provided as Adobe PDF documents in the files section of the site (download the Adobe viewer if you don't have it on your system).

Modifying The Schematic or PCB

The project schematic and circuit board were designed by Jeremy G8MLK using Express PCB . This free download is available here http://www.expresspcb.com - Click on the download link at the top of the page.

Once installed, the project files can be opened and changed in the using the above software.

Software

MPLab

The software was developed with Microchip's MPLab IDE which can be downloaded here (Look under the design section)

Once the above is downloaded, unzipped and installed you need to download the source for the project and unzip this to a new directory. Then start MPLab and from the file menu select 'open workspace'. Select the only workspace file in the package you just unzipped.

You might like to start by looking at the file 'code explanation.txt' which is a brief description of what is happening in the code where. Turning line numbers on from edit -> properties->ASM file types (tab) in MPLab will help here.

If you are going to change the code at all then the data sheet for the PIC 16F628 used in invaluable. To ensure you get the latest version, download it from the Microchip web site where you got MPLab from above - it's in the same 'design' section of the site under datasheets. Note the 16F628 is a 8 bit device.


Programming

Once you have successfully build your version of the code, you'll need to transfer it to the board. This is done with another piece of hardware. Commercial versions are available from Microchip, Farnell and others. Note that the ICSP pin out on the board is non standard so you may have to make up a special cable to go from your programmer to the board. If you are a club member, there is a programmer you can borrow as part of the club's loanable kit.
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