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Author Topic: COMPLAINT: Starter kit components not fitting  (Read 7393 times)
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I am new to Arduino but not electronics and I expected problems with the starter kit.
One problem I encountered is the pot supplied with the kit. It's marked as 10k but in reality is 50k as measured by a multimeter. Couldn't figure out why the LCD "hello world" project wouldn't work. In fact it was working but the LCD backlight was too dim to see.

Adrian
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Wow... that's a pretty big one to screw up. You could put a 10K resistor in parallel with the pot and that would make the total resistance always less than 10K. But, yes, it should have came with the proper pot.
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Update

3) The reason the potentiometer base doesn't fit well is because of the pin shapes. They're metal strips that measure 1.05mm wide and .29mm thick at the breadboard end, but this thin shaft is only 3.9mm long at which point the width broadens to 1.98mm. I do not have a tool to measure the breadboard holes; that wider shaft doesn't fit in the hole but the length of thin shaft isn't long enough to make contact unless you push it down hard.

Presumably I need to solder header pins onto the ends to make it work as intended. I don't have the first clue about soldering, anyone throw me a bone?

You can actually fix it very easy without soldering. The reason the potentiometer doesn't fit well is that the holes in the breadboard are actually not round, but slits. The slits are horizontal, whereas the male pins of the potentiometer are vertical. If you take a small plier and carefully rotate the thinner bottom half of the potentiometer pins by 45° they will fit nicely. I just came across this while doing Project 05 of the starter kit. Honestly, I think these minor misalignments are part of the beauty of the kit, it's you are working with off the shelf components, not with something 100% pre-baked for you.
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I agree, and what's more is that actually hacking it is poor engineering, and especially if the right way is readily available.
I think a desperate enough situation combined with that knowledge of how it looks, and feels having been done right, that anyone will find a way.
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