Power supplies – good info about them and one really neat project

We’ve all seen the neat projects on the web where someone uses a power supply taken from an old PC.    There is something simple about the project, yet so insanely useful and versatile.

I have not seen many that were as “polished” as the power supply project here.  This is from the blog “TG’s Electronics Exploration”.  The project is laid out in a way that will give you multiple power options as well as a digital readout.  Most of the power supply projects I’ve seen are relatively simple hacks where the basic simple values of a PC power supply are used (5 volts, 12 volts, etc).  This has many more options.

I really like how clean the layout is as well as the LCD’s.  The other really neat thing about his – the work isn’t wasted if the power supply eventually dies on you.  It is relatively easy to move all the electronics to a new supply.

The project page can be found at:

http://tgbuilds.wordpress.com/projects/diy-bench-supply/

The next website we will talk about comes from a sit I visit on a regular basis.  Not ham radio, but plenty of electronics information and kits – ladyada.net.  I used to run a hackerspace in my area.  We did a few projects to get people soldering.  One neat project was a “TV be-gone”.  Simple device where you build it, put it in a container (I, of course, used an Altoids tin) and use it to turn off TV’s.  Great when you’re somewhere where a TV is on, loud, and nobody is actually watching the thing and you can’t even carry a conversation with the guy next to you.  Simple enough project.

This site goes into several questions I get from potential hams when I teach radio classes, including:

What is a power supply?

Why use a power supply?

What’s inside a power supply?

AC/DC theory.

A really neat primer geared towards those that may not understand anything about all those wall warts that are drawing tons of power when not used!  I almost passed this up, as I know enough about power supplies to get me through what I need for my projects.  I found it a neat article that allowed me to probably explain it easier to those that aren’t technically inclined.

Check it out at:

http://www.ladyada.net/learn/powersupply/index.html

Now, if you have any links to great projects or informative sites, please leave them below.

Jonathan Hardy, KB1KIX, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Connecticut, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

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