Electronics

Review: LED Ring Magnifier PCB Bench Vise with Helping Hands

3rd hand tools are a must-have when working with soldering. You need something to hold the PCB, the solder, and the soldering iron. Basically any project where you need a (wait for ) 3rd hand! A magnifying glass is also helpful for those with aging eyes. My friends at sent my this to check out and I have to say I'm impressed. Read Before receiving this, I had made my own with a combination of…
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Electronics

Review: Adjustable 30V/10A DC Power Supply

I recently received the LongWei 30V/10A (Model: LW-K2010D) power supply from to review. Full disclosure - it was sent to free for this review. That said, I'm transparent about my views on things and don't sugarcoat. The below review is my first impression of this unit doing some basic validation of it's functions. In the coming months I'll drop back in and update as I get more experience with this PS. The review is broken…
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LEGO

Lepin Baja Trophy Truck (23013) Build / Lepin vs LEGO Comparison

Let's start by clearing the air.  I'm fully aware of what Lepin is up to.  I'm an AFOL and have been a dedicated LEGO fan (mostly Technic and Minstorms) for over 40 years.  I have spent more $ on LEGO than I want to know.  Am I a purist?  Somewhat.  I didn't really pay much attention to knock-off LEGO brands as I just assumed they were crap, so I ignored all the media about them. …
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Arduino

Nextion TFT LCD – Why you need one!

I'll start this by stating that I don't work for iTead, and nor am I getting any sort of   I just really like this TFT LCD.  I stumbled upon the Nextion (which is a slick easy-to-use TFT LCD with a HMI editor) when they had their first crowdfunding campaign a year or so ago.   I ignored it as there was not a lot of documentation, and frankly, I really didn't understand the concept of…
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Electronics

Review: RBBell – Electronic Bike Horn

Today, I'm doing a review of the RBBell electronic bike horn.   This is a battery powered piezo that beeps when the button is pressed.  Pretty simple.  It's loud (as in 120dB loud)!  It startled me after accidentally pressing the button during my review video. I can tell already this is going to be effective when I hit the trails.   I do a fair bit of biking. Most of which is in trails not…
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DYI, Mods, Hacks & Stuff

LISAMRC ML180 Carbon Fiber Frame Kit – Review

Today we are doing a review of the LISAMRC ML1800 Carbon Fiber Frame Kit.  Not sure what LISAMRC stands for, so I suppose it's a 'cool' factor thing.  Overall, I'm pretty impressed with this micro-sized quad frame kit. It's well crafted and light.  There are some minor issues, but no show stoppers and nothing you can't fix with some spare bits.  The following is an unboxing review and observations putting the base kit together.  Sometime in…
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Review – AVAGO – ASMT-LW60 – LED Fibre Optic Strip

I'd say that LEDs have  been one of the fastest spreading new technologies in the last 10 years.   Consider now that most cars are being manufactured with LED lighting for all the turn/marker/brake/DRL lights.  They have even made an impact with home lighting - even though people are being gouged with inflated pricing (IMHO) from places like Home Depot, Rona, Lowes  This will change as LEDs become Just wish I had invested in those…
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Review – OPTEK – Warm White LED Strip

Lately, I've been toying around with different LED strips for my projects.   I've had the chance to use a variety of LED strips (both RGB, and single colour types).  They come in many flavours - water proof, 3m-backed, silcone encased, sealed, non-sealed, exposed etc.   All have their advantages / disadvantages. (more…)
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Review – Dexter Industries – DI Thermal Series Sensor Roundup (Updated)

I recently had the chance to test out a set of Dexter Industries Thermal Sensors produced for the NXT. For those that are not aware, Dexter Industries has entered the market of producing LEGO Mindstorms NXT-compatible sensors and has come up with some pretty cool ideas such as the dSwitch (allows you to switch in-home devices on/off using the NXT) and some cool new ideas such as solar charging for the NXT as well as…
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Reviews – Mindsensors Magnetic Compass

The folks at Mindsensors were kind enough to send me over this Magnetic Compass sensor to test. The sensor serves the useful task of providing the NXT with an indication of its heading angle from magnetic North to the NXT. It uses orthogonal two-axis magnetic sensor from Honeywell (HMC1052) and provides digital communication with NXT. Click the image below to see a video showing the compass in action. I did a brief test of this…
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