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Paper Circuits|Cardstock, laser printer & reactive foil

Let’s see how to make (art or a working) paper circuitPaper circuits are common and easy to make. I used a basic laminator, cardstock, and reactive foil.

Black cardstock

  • Choose a basic circuit schematic or art design you like. 
  • Next you will need to print your work using a laser printer using black ink. The heat reactive foil technology will adhere to this type of ink. 
  • After you have printed your work on card stock you will now be able to send it through the laminator. Simply cut the foil to match the card stock. 
  • Place the foil paper on top of the card stock
  • Send both pieces through the laminator. 

Optional (to make a working circuit try laying copper tape or conductive thread on top of printed traces) Conductive thread is an innovative thread which carries electricity and completes electrical circuits. Made from Stainless Steel fiber (SS316L). This thread will not pass through a sewing machine needle and must be used in the bobbin, or couched, or by hand.

Click here for video:

Here’s what I used:

*HP LaserJet Pro Printer
*Scotch Laminator 3mm or 5mm setting
*Black card stock

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DesignSpark|PCB Setting

Customizing PCB in DesignSpark is simple and fun to do. In this blog I will show you how you can customize your circuits.

First you will need to start with a new PCB Design. You are able to specify how many layers your board requires and if you will start with a circle board. The file should open with a square PCB by default. To erase the pcb press the Select Mode icon (second to the last: arrow icon) select the pcb and press delete on your keyboard or click the red X icon.

Now you can proceed with your new pcb shapes. To do this, on your tab bar go to ADD: scroll down to Board and select any shape. You are now able to make your desired board shape. Try a few different ones. Next option to choose is changing the colors of the pcb, components, traces, silkscreen, and pins. There are 48 standard colors to choose from and also a color palette option!

As you can see DesignSpark allows you to design many pcbs in one work space. However, selected pcb settings will apply to all boards within the work space.

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4-Bit Manual Counter – Multisim

Manual Binary Counter

Every Sunday you can expect a new video. Topics like HP 50g and Multisim just for engineering students.

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The SN54/74LS47 are Low Power Schottky BCD to 7-Segment Decoder/Drivers consisting of NAND gates, input buffers and seven AND-OR-INVERT gates. They offer active LOW, high sink current outputs for driving indicators directly. Seven NAND gates and one driver are connected in pairs to make BCD data and its complement available to the seven decoding AND-OR-INVERT gates. The remaining NAND gate and three input buffers provide lamp test, blanking input/ripple-blanking output and ripple-blanking input.

Continue reading “4-Bit Manual Counter – Multisim”

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Nice tutorial.

Electrical & Computer Engineering Projects

4 digit 7 segment display

This is a project I’ve been playing with for awhile. I bought a few seven segment displays at awhile ago to use in Arduino projects. Using a single 7 seg display was pretty straightforward. You can either control each of the segments with your Arduino, or use a BCD decoder and use four Arduino pins to control the seven segments.

Then I examined my four digit seven segment display and was surprised to see that it had only a few pins. I was expecting at least 9 per digit! Intro the concept of multiplexing. Multiplexing, in a nutshell, means doing one task for a short period of time, then doing another task for a short period of time, then doing another…etc. In other words, multiplexing means cycling through and completing only one input at a time. For the four digit seven segment display, this means cycling through the digits…

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Laser cut cardboard
Laser cut cardboard

Build a project box out of cardboard. Designed in MakerCase and laser printed on scrap cardboard this cool 6x2x6 cm box makes a nice enclosure for a project.
After printing the design via Full Spectrum Laser Printer, hot glue all but one side. This will help with stability and keep the box secure. The unglued side will serve as access to the circuit inside. This box can house leds, 8W speakers, electrolytic mic, pcb boards, etc.

WP_20151009_011 Cardboard Casing Laser Cut

By making use of the spaces between the layers of cardboard, tiny components like resistors and capacitors can slide through the layer and connect wires or parts.

Adding an image or name to the box and really help it stand out. Choosing multiple color for box using colored poster board is an option.  This is meant to be an indoor project. Trying to mod podge the pieces could be a success! Which ever you choose just find unique ways to use this housing and share it with a friend!

More in the next project…blinking leds, switches, & buzzers. Be sure to visit us again soon.

Before you go check out more cool projects. 

Case a project with cardboard cube.
Case a project with cardboard cube.

Acrylic Laser Cut Cubes

Mini Clear Cube
Mini Clear Cube

Want to make a cube or boxed casing for a project? So did I. This is how I made it:

First having access to a laser cutter is essential. However, a Silhouette Curio may be the next best thing. I was able to use a Full Spectrum laser printer. The pattern I used was generated using MakerCase. MakerCase is a software specifically designed for easy laser cut casing.

Design specs in MakerCase

  • Units: Inches
  • Dimensions: 1x1x1
  • Material Thickness: 1/8
  • Edge Joints: Finger

Next I generated the laser cut case plans. Mini Cube Pattern

*Converting from one one format to the other may be necessary.

A test cut was done on cardboard before I proceeded with the acrylic.

1 Inch Laser Cut CubeAcrylic CubeAcrylic Cube PatternMini Acrylic Cube

New YouTube Videos

Every Sunday you can expect a new video. Topics like HP 50g and Multisim just for engineering students.

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Breadboards & Kits

Get your supplies to build your own circuits.

Coming soon!

New YouTube Videos

Every Sunday you can expect a new video. Topics like HP 50g and Multisim just for engineering students.

via Blogger

New YouTube Videos

Every Sunday you can expect a new video. Topics like HP 50g and Multisim just for engineering students.

via Blogger



Today’s blog is about the 74ls85 TTL. To build a circuit with this chip you will need two 4 pack dip switches and three leds. A datasheet is below. This TTL will compare the combined value for the 4-bit input of A inputs vs the B 4-bit inputs. The output will send a high to only one of the leds, A<B, A=B, or A>B depending on the condition.

Comparison of words greater than 4-bit can be accomplished by cascading ‘ls85 as described in the data sheet.
The 74ls85 compares two separate 4-bit words, or numbers, coming from two different sources, such as counter, shift register, etc., including hard-wiring one number on the chip.
One 4-bit word is placed on the inputs A0 thru A3, with the Least Significant Bit on A0.
The other word is placed on inputs B0 thru B3
A 7 segment display can be implemented in the circuit by joining the inputs to a decoder that leads to the display. This will show numeric values.


Project idea
: Build a  scoreboard that counts up to 15. The first component to reach 15 will win! In the event that there is a tie the A=B led will lite, if so play another round.

74ls85-2 74ls85-3

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