Grab and drink, sit back and relax for just over 12 minutes of pure pleasure. It merges Lego with our favorite microcontroller RP2040, just like it powers the Raspberry Pi Pico. The creator of the project, his Ancient James, is familiar with these pages, having made his STM32 version in mid-2022. The goal was to integrate the RP2040 board inside a replica of a LEGO Space series computer terminal, but AncientJames went far beyond that goal, making the build process a lot of fun.
AncientJames’ video begins with a series of RP2040 based PCBs being removed from the panel. It remains to sand lightly to remove any burrs and solder the panels that make up the terminals. AncientJames expertly creates 3D printed jigs (easily printed on our best 3D printers) to hold parts in place while soldering. Their soldering iron of choice seems to be the TS80P. This is what I reviewed as part of my guide to the best soldering irons and stations. The TS80P is a decent soldering iron, but our review found the new TS101 to be a much better choice if you’re looking for a smart soldering iron. is a .42 inch OLED display with a flat flex connector and a razor-sharp 72 x 40 pixel resolution. The resolution may be small, but the quality is crystal clear. Another custom jig is used as a means of securing the screen to his PCB while the epoxy resin mass dries.
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A quick test shows a series of space-themed animations that recall the history of LEGO space themes and science fiction itself. I’m sure you’ve seen the Starfields reminiscent of the Star Trek movies and the Nostromo (alien) landing guidance graphics.
But the build isn’t finished yet. Another 3D printing jig is here, this time offering a negative mold for pouring the resin. The resin is colored a nice dark blue and placed in a vacuum chamber to remove air and air bubbles.The resin is then poured into a mold and the RP2040 computer is placed firmly using a jig and some Lego axles. increase. Once cured, remove the RP2040 LEGO terminal from the mold and sand off any burrs.
The final product is a near-exact replica of a LEGO computer terminal, but with a computer inside. When attached to a Lego power brick, through two of his PCB connectors carefully placed on a custom-designed RP2040 PCB, contacts embedded in the power brick give him 3V of power, activating the terminals. I understand. Pressing the stud on top of the terminal cycles through the available animations. I didn’t see any push buttons on the PCB, so my guess is that the touch control is based on capacitive touch.
This project is fun. AncientJames YouTube Channel. I’ve returned to AncientJames’ Twitter account, which now appears to have been deleted. It would be a great shame to lose the history of this fascinating project.