USB UART Replacement

March 19, 2010

Shortly after getting my Arduino i was playing with some DC motors and was powering the device through the USB->serial cable. It turns out this wasn’t the best idea and after a couple hours i was doing something and attached a motor mistakenly without a resistor when I should have had one. The result was burning ozone and a super hot FTDI chip.

I was going to get a new Arduino when I came across this blog post:

I ordered a new chip from sparkfun for only $3.95 (shipping was just as much).

Rather than waiting for the new one to come I decided in a fit of activity that the old one should be removed. With a bit of prying and desoldering it was removed. During the extraction two of the wires in the board itself got pulled up.

After a week or so the new chip arrived in the mail. I started to prep the area and fix the pulled up wires and found my old radio shack soldering iron just not up to the task. After a trip to Frys I had in hand some 60/40 solder, Rosin Flux and a new Elenco SL-540 soldering iron.

After getting the new gear it was a much easier task. I dropped a gob of flux on the pulled up wires and pushed them in to place. I dripped some solder blobs on the contacts in the corner and attached the chip. After that i just wicked away the excess using a braided wire and used a tiny bit of solder and lots of flux to get the rest of the contacts down.

Here’s the finished result:

Arduino UART replacement up close.

Arduino UART replacement up close.

Pointing to the UART.

Pointing to the UART.

I was terrified of plugging it in but it turns out it worked perfectly, it just looks horrible.


One Response to “USB UART Replacement”

  1. Dan said

    Yeah, soldering those little connections is tough, but if it works, that’s great.

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