I’m starting to feel distinctly silly, because yet another DIY electronics hobby project has failed to perform as expected…
Do you recall the Atmospherics Monitor project I was waffling on about last year? This is a circuit that can detect electrical activity in the atmosphere from thousands of miles away and present it in audible form as Sliding Whistles, Tweaks, Pings, Chirps, Risers, Chinks, Clicks, and the exotic Dawn Chorus. (Click Here to see my original posting, which includes the circuit diagram and construction notes.)
It took me quite a while to gather all of the parts together. The item that was most difficult to track down was the ferrite rod. Fortunately, one of the guys on the Yahoo “How Things Work” group (of which I am a member) had one in his “box of bits and pieces,” and he kindly donated it to the cause.
Even when I had all of the bits and pieces in my hands, it still took me ages to get around to pulling the little scamp together … a bit here and a bit there … until, finally, a few days ago, it was finished. Hurray! (Happy Face)
And then I applied power… and absolutely nothing happened… (Sad Face)
My unpackaged circuit
(taped to a piece of cardboard in preparation for shipping)
I’ve checked the obvious things, or at least the things that seem obvious to me. The problem is that I’m a digital man at heart … I get confused by all of those wibbly-wobbly analog signals (the fact that I was once the Analog Product Marketing Manager at a large EDA company was just some strange twist of fate to which I seem to be susceptible).
But turn that frown upside down into a smile. Fortunately I know just what to do, which is the same thing I did when my DIY Geiger Counter
failed to perform its sole function in life (Click Here
)… I shipped it to my electronics guru friend David Ashton in Australia and he soon brought the little rascal to life (Click Here
). In fact, it’s happily clicking away to itself on my desk as I pen these words.
I’ve already contacted David, who says that he’s standing by in dread anticipation, so keep your fingers crossed and watch this space…
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