Practical tips to use breadboards?

I have one 800 points breadboard, which is “Large” = does not fit the powersource.

I have another 800 points breadboard, which is of poor quality but fits the powersouce pins

I have the Arduino Uno itself mounted next to a mini-breadboard.

I have to extend the circuits by EEPROMs that are mounted each 8 on their own 400 points breadboard.

…and so on.

There are jumpers everwhere, varieous male/female connectors, connected or not.

Briefly wiring became a nightmare. And I am only 1/3 of the project, and only 1/2 of the pieces are attached.

Looking to various tutorials I found different wiring strategies, most I cant apply because I am on a different strategy to work or on different hardware.

I am planning to build a wooden breadboard base, but I postpone the execution to the point I will learn more, fearing I will multiply the mess otherwise.


Question is:

Is there any reliable reference web-site to learn how to prototype / wire on breadboards?

Thank you!



One thing that greatly increases neatness is to make your own bespoke wire links from solid-core wire as you need them - ie every wire is the right length and kept low to the board and neat. It takes more time but the result is more robust.

Lots of arcing over-long wires above the board will increase the chances of cross-talk, parasitics, all sorts of undesirable behaviour. Neatness and tight layout is good.

One thing to note about the premade hook-up wires - they are not really intended for power, only signal, and are often very fine guage. Solid core hookup wire is happy with several amps (more than a breadboard is happy with!)

You need wire with the right core thickness (thicker than CAT5, note), about 0.6 to 0.7mm

Found this rather nice example:

(Sorry its on photobucket, what a horrible site!)


Thank you! Good advices! I didn't know the jumpers are intended mainly for signal.

I found 1 mm wire. Would that be ok?

The photo in the link - is the wiring custom-made, as you said above?

0.6 to 0.7mm is going make positive contact and not stretch the breadboard contacts - its basically the thickness of most component leads. 1mm is too big. AWG 22 is another way of saying this.

Thinner wires may fail to make good contact (especially in a well used breadboard), thicker will stretch the contacts.

I searched the net. It is impossible to find 0,6-0,7 mm wire here. Perhaps is to small item to be posted. Or I am less inspired than ever. :-((

I will visit the street-shops on Monday morning.

I searched the net. It is impossible to find 0,6-0,7 mm wire here.

search ebay for "awg22 wire" for thousands of entries, including sets of precut and stripped breadboard wire.

These may be of interest to you:



I agree with MarkT's advice. I would also recommend using a breadboard compatible Arduino such as Nano over breadboard incompatible such as Uno. Uno/Mega/Due etc are for use with shields. Nano/Micro/Mini are better for breadboard projects. You can power the breadboard with usb power through the Nano, as long as you don't exceed 500mA in total.

With wires, always use red and black for power and ground. Be consistent with the colours you use for other types of signal.

This is the winner:


@ PaulRB - I didn't know Uno is to be used with shields. I noticed that are many shields, but I used an LCD shield once and I found it highly occult and turns very expensive. I love working on I2C, so I hope the alternatives (NANO) may be effective in this respect.

@larryD- I cant see the images you posted #8. In fact I can see images only after download them, not in the body of the thread. :-(

@jremington - I am not based in USA, so I have to pass the custom and to pay transportation. Thank you anyway, I appreciate!

@MarkT - wonderful advises! Thank you!


I was also impressed by the clear look of the breadboards you posted. I agree being consistent with the colors is nice. The only point, here all jumpers sets are multi-colored, so I have to buy quite a bunch of them to get sufficient of each color.


There is also something to have in mind when prototyping : the next stage - PCB. Altough I would be very happy to corrode my own PCB, I do not like to use Ferrum chloride. So I have to rely on something else, thus the pose of the components shall anticipate their pose on further PCB (whatever method I may use, except corrosion). To be honest, in this moment I have no idea how to proceed once the prototyping will be completed. :-((

You can buy solid core awg22 wire locally, I'm sure. I certainly can in UK. Buy a couple metres each of a few colours including red and black.

If you don't want to get into designing your own PCB and having them manufactured, an alternative is protoboard, stripboard, or, my favourite, tri-pad board. You can also buy standard PCBs in the shape of breadboards so you can simply transpose the circuit from your breadboard.

@PaulRB I never know there are PCB in the shape of breadboard! That is very handy, indeed. Saves time. . A tri-pad board also looks very easy to use. I hope I can find either one locally.

All I could find is regular pegboards and "green pegboard" which looks the same as the brown one, except color.

And this one "Eurocard" :-): it is said 3 holes in line, looks somehow similar to tri-pad.

Still, I wonder whether it fits the integrated circuits.

I keep looking. Or perhaps I can group the order with some other items that are difficult to find here at a reasonable price. One brand EEPROM C256 is some 3 USD here, for instance.

Do you know an online shop based in EU?

Is there any (cheap) book (English or French or Spanish) of basic electronics, including boards? I am looking for something very intuitive and explanatory, to meet children expectation as well. To be ordered on-line.

Reason why I am not searching Amazon is that many reviews inthere look biased and most of them are done just after purchasing, thus not mirroring a real use of the book. While some other reviews are certainly paid...

For wiring lots of parallel connections (you mentioned eproms), take a piece of wide ribbon cable, tear it to 8-wire strips and solder male pin headers to both ends. Very handy for connecting sram, bus arbitrators etc ICs.

@hh77 - good idea! @PaulRB - Thank you for the links!

I got an Arduino Nano (a clone) - very nice piece of art!

But the only breadboard that accepted it was a micro-one All 400 and 800 points breadboard that I have refused the poor chip to enter (impossible to stick the pins in).

It comes to the point that not all breadboards are born equal :-)

I mounted a RGB sensor on that micro-breadboard and Arduino Nano, copy a code from some Egypt source (shame on me!) and I got a sensor which obviously does not work correctly (tomorrow is another day and I work it out using some tutorials, to code it myself).

From the point of view of breadboards however, I found a new use of them: mount one function on one piece of small Breadboard (smell of my Robocat in this case).

Any other use of micro -BB you came across?