I’m going to take a brief pause on my other projects, because this is hopefully going to make them easier. The basic idea is that I want to build a desk that is setup specifically for electronics – basically a mounted breadboard, power supply, soldering iron, hot air gun, storage for components, etc – to try and keep everything organized. The main reason I want to build this is because my computer desk is also my electronics workstation, so I have academic books, ICs, soldering stuff, pencils, letters, bills, all just scattered around my desk. It is a nightmare. So I want to make an electronics workstation that can be stowed when needed, and contains almost everything I need to do some basic tasks.

Now this project has some pretty high demands, since it also rests on my building my computer into a desk. See this picture for an example:

PCWorld – How a legendary PC mod inspired the most outrageous computer desk ever created

My desk is the Ergocraft Ashton L-Shaped desk, shown below:

Ergocraft Ashton L-Shaped Desk from Staples
Ergocraft Ashton L-Shaped Desk from Staples

So my whole idea is to make one side of the L into my computer, and the other side into an electronics workstation. This way I can have a single cord coming out of the desk that plugs into an outlet, and it can be internally connected to a power strip that powers my 3 monitors, computer, soldering iron, hot air gun, etc etc. Also I can internally route a USB cord from the computer to the breadboard, to make programming the Teensy or Arduino easier and cleaner. I have a lot of plans for the computer desk too, and I will make a page on that very soon because this all has to happen at the same time – I’m still in the planning stage at this point.

Here’s a quick list of features I want to make for the electronics workstation (note that these are not essentials, but things I hope I can accomplish):

  • Massive breadboard
  • Enclosure for soldering/reflow equipment
  • Enclosure/storage for ICs and other electrical components
  • Storage space for breadboard jumpers and stuff
  • Integrated DC power supply with 3.3V, 5V, 12V, -12V, and an adjustable output from 0-24V – I’ll make a dedicated page for this
  • Integrated bare-bones oscilloscope – I’ll make a dedicated page for this as well
  • Integrated bare-bones function generator – Also dedicated page
  • Integrated multimeter – maybe dedicated page if I build one, not if I use the one I currently own

The power supply, oscilloscope, and function generator will each get their own page. At this point I feel it is necessary to point out that I often mix whether I should be writing these posts in present tense or past tense – since I am posting this and updating it live, I tend to write in present test. But since I get an abysmal amount of traffic unless I share a page to Reddit or something when I finish it, 99% of people who read this will read it once I have completed it, so it would make more sense to do it in past tense. Things like this are the reason it takes me so long to make a new page… Anyways, I’ll try to update this page with links and more information as I continue the process. The first project I am going to start on is the power supply, so here goes nothing.


Electronics Workstation Part 1: Planning
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