Problem Connecting to Lilypad Main Board Via FTDI FT232RL Breakout Board


I have recently started a project which requires the use of a Lilypad Main Board. I purchased an FTDI FT232RL (Datasheet: in order to connect to the Lilypad. However, after following the steps on the Arduino site and installing the drivers, the COM ports are not appearing. I have tried connecting through both the VCP and the D2XX and neither works on Mac OS X or Windows. I have also tried to unbrick the FTDI board by using MProg, but no devices are detected. Finally, I tried with a new FTDI board, but still no luck.

Also, when going to device manager on both OS X and Windows, there are no FTDI devices detected when the board is plugged in. When the board is plugged in, the LED on the Lilypad Main Board blinks green a few times before going off, which I have read it is supposed to do.

Some background information on the systems: Mac OS X 10.10 (Yosemite) Windows 8.1

I am just unsure what else to try at this point. Any advice or help would be much appreciated, thank you!

Can you upload a photo of your FTDI board and link from where you bought it? Have you tried a different USB cable?

I have tried a different cable and that did not work. These are the two boards that I have tried it with. One was purchased on Amazon ( and the other was from SparkFun ( Attached is a photo of both of the boards.

Sorry, here is the photo

I'm afraid you have me just about stumped. 2 different cables, 2 different computers/OS's, 2 different copies of the same board (one most likely without a counterfeit FTDI chip, and one most likely has a counterfeit FTDI chip), and no devices are detected.

Do you have other devices that work, such as an Uno or other Arduino?

I guess you could try yet another cable. Make sure you're not using a charge-only cable. Make sure you're not using some other device that is common to all of your connections, such as always using the same USB hub or something like that.

The next thing to try may be a completely different USB-serial adapter, such as one with a CH340G chip, or Bluetooth adapter. Or tap the built-in adapter on an Uno.

Thanks for the response. I think next I’m going to try to connect with a microUSB using the FT231X ( and see if that works. I can also try to bum another miniUSB cable from someone to try that again also.

I do have an Uno that connects to my computer.

Something to note is that when I look at the serial ports in the Arduino app I have a few different things that are listed. I have attached a photo of the different options that do show up (note: Chester is the name of my Bluetooth speakers and the HC-05 is a Bluetooth module I had that connected my Uno wirelessly to the computer for a prior project)

Screen Shot 2015-12-01 at 11.52.11 PM.png

Well there you go, there are lots of ways to crack that nut! You should be able to use that FT231X board.

Or you can use your Uno as an FTDI adapter. You can (carefully) remove the ATmega328P chip from your Uno, then hook up the Uno like this:
Uno Lilypad
RX RX — (note RX and TX lines not crossed like you may have been taught!)
Reset DTR

You can program your HC-05 to be an FTDI-like adapter:

Your Lilypad may have a bootloader and processor which runs at 57600 baud or one that runs at 115200 baud. So when you hook it up and try to program it, you may need to first choose on the Tools, Board menu Lilypad and if that doesn’t work, try Uno. The Lilypad selection tries the upload at 57600 and the Uno selection tries the upload at 115200. There are a fair number of Lilypads made with the “wrong” crystal (if you consider 16 MHz to be wrong). Figure out what kind of Lilypad you have. Perhaps you have a round Uno. :slight_smile: