After the severe disappointment of my previous attempt at assembling my Speeduino, I decided to go out and spend the money to get a proper soldering station. It was worth it.
I picked up a 60W Digitech station from Jaycar. It was a fair bit of money, and about $100 more than the cheap POS I got on Trademe (that I still havent heard back from the seller about).
Its digital, really quick to heat up and maintains temps easily. Its awesome.
Soldering with this thing is the best soldering I have ever done. It makes it so easy.
As per the recommendation I started off by soldering the resistors. Working from the ones with the highest quantity, and working my way down.
It’s a slow process, and i cocked it up a few times before I got the hang of it. Until I got into the swing of things it was hard to get heat into both the solder pad and the legs of the component, without blocking the hole (because solder needs to flow down it and i found if you blocked the hole it wouldn’t flow easily).
Eventually after a lot of bloody solder, solder, snip, snip I finished all the resistors. All as perfectly lined up as I could get, with the stripes all the same way around. I’m slightly pedantic.
Next it’s the capacitors, starting once again with the little ones that have the highest quantity.
Popped the awesome little 3mm LEDS in. These are for the individual ignition and injector channels.
Some people choose to solder the ICs direct to the board, but i decided to go with the original recommendation of using sockets for the ICs. These are actually surprisingly easy to solder, as long as you can hold the socket to the board (or it’ll just fall off).
Blu-Tack. I’ve heard it recommended for this purpose in the past and gave it a shot. It worked awesome, just make sure to stick to the opposite end of where you’re soldering or it’ll get all melty and sticky and hard to clean off.
One of the bigger tasks was to solder all the pins for the Arduino interface. These go on the opposite side of the board and all have to be soldered one by one. The easiest way to do this is to put all the pins into the Arduino, and then into the board and solder them. This keeps them all lined up nicely.
After that it was as easy as soldering in the Mosfets, MAP sensor and then the wiring connectors. And it was done.
It’s not an easy project, but as long as you can follow instructions, anyone that can solder should be able to assemble it reasonably OK.
The other thing I did whilst working on the Speeduino board was to load the latest firmware on the Arduino and add Bluetooth to it for wireless tuning/monitoring. Its easy and gets soldered to the back of the Arduino board. Instructions are on the Speeduino website. I did reconfigure my BT module though, which is a bit of a faff around (involving my spare Arduino, a jumper wire between GND/RST and leads to jumper the BT module right into the connector), but now it’s named correctly, the speed is increased and it has a password that isn’t 1234. (please note if using my photos to help build your own, my BT wiring changes and may be incorrect due to some testing and troubleshooting I had to do)
So now I have an Arduino with Speeduino firmware loaded, a Speeduino 0.3.3 board completely populated, and a bluetooth connection to Tunerstudio (or one of various Android apps). Without a car to put it in i’m kinda at a halt now. I have tested the MAP sensor by connecting it to a hand vacuum pump, and it reads changes in vacuum which indicates that Tunerstudio can see the sensor on the Speeduino board. It’s a good sign.
Connecting via bluetooth is amazing. Its fast, and its stable. I’ll be able to wireless log and tune the car, using all the full features of Tunerstudio. I’ll be able to connect wirelessly with either my laptop, window tablet or phone. I can also connect via standard USB if needed.
So, there we have it. The Speeduino is assembled and somewhat working. Now I need to work out the wiring adaptor to the car, put it in a case, get my wideband (and install in car)…. oh and somewhere in there i’ll actually get a damn car to put it in. I can’t wait.