Automatic bulk programmer
Roman Black email (remove spam text)
Recently we've been programming PICs by the 100, which
is a PITA with a picstart. :o)
I know production programmers are available, but since
the main chips we use (16c505) program in a few seconds,
even using a gang programmer will not save much time
because of the time to insert 10 chips into 10 sockets,
then remove them again. There is just as much labour
needed and not much time saved.
I have an idea for a auto-feeder programmer I would like
to bounce off the list. :o)
* The DIP chips are supplied in a standard plastic "tube".
* Tube is held vertically in the machine, so chips are gravity
fed out the bottom one by one.
* The chip can only fall one chip length, vertically, into
a very simple jig, with a solenoid "gate" at the bottom stopping
it falling any further.
* The chip is secure enough in the jig that a second solenoid
clamps 5 sharp "pins" onto the appropriate legs, 2 on one
side of the chip and 3 on the other, giving Vdd,Vss,Vpp,SDA,SCL.
This is only 2 simple mechanical levers and one solenoid.
* Programming is automatic, and after programming is complete
the pins are released, the bottom solenoid "gate" opens and the
chip simply falls into a tray, finished. The gate solenoid is
fast with an opto sensor, to eject only one chip. Another and
probably better option is a simple side ejector mechanism that
throws the chip out one side, and gravity feeds in the next chip.
* If a program error occurs, the units beeps etc, and operator
removes the suspect chip.
I think this device could be built at quite low cost, I have
a few solenoids in my junk box. Each tube of fresh PICs is simply
inserted, press the start button, and voila 30 programmed chips
sitting in the tray.
Any suggestions?? :o)
http://www.piclist.com hint: The list server can filter out subtopics
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See also: massmind.org/techref/microchip/devprogs.htm?key=programmer