Wednesday, 26 November 2014

A Christmas tree for your Raspberry Pi

I recently backed Andrew Gale’s short Kickstarter campaign for a small soldering kit shaped like a Christmas tree complete with several LEDs. It only uses 4 GPIO pins to control 7 LEDs and it does this by charlieplexing.   The Kickstarter campaign has successfully been funded so Andrew has started to send out the kits, mine landed on the doormat today.
Christmas tree parts

First impressions, the PCB looks well made and is nicely laid out. The instructions are very clear and easy to follow.   Also included with my kit was the bi-colour LED which can be used in place of the yellow LED at the top of the tree.
It took me no less than 10 minutes to solder the kit together due to the low component count, though some less experienced constructors may take longer.  Upon finishing the kit, I plugged it into my Raspberry Pi and tried some of the example Python code which worked well.
Completed Christmas tree

All in all I am very impressed with this kit.  It’s a great little project to learn to solder on and it makes a nice little Christmas decoration for your Raspberry Pi.
You can find out more about this kit on Andrew’s website