I was In college once as a Electrical Engineering major. While being a self taught programmer is very cool I was a self taught electrical guy. The difference is the type of tools needed, I needed soldering irons, wire cutters, wire strippers, component storage, breadboards testing equipment, power supply etc.
I tried fitting all of this into my college dorm room. And I succeeded for a while. Until I had to do another subject. My desk had become a mess and it took nearly an hour to re organize and hide everything. It was a bad situation.
I decided to research portable electronic workstations. But they don’t exist and the ones people made were super huge. I resolved to build my own and this what I came up with.
This is one of my biggest projects to date. And its due for a redesign.
The overhead light:
So this is easily one of my favorite features I literally thought I was a genius. In the top left corner of the box was a light. There is a magnet on the top and cardboard for flexibility holding the light arm to the box. Swing it up the magnet holds it. Turn it on done!
The power supply:
I took a 24v 6A power brick apart and used a buck converter and ATmega to regulate and display voltage, The output went to screw post of my breadboard. 12v 5v variable.
I was very proud of this. I stayed with in the dimensions of a standard briefcase. That meant I only had an inch to store all my components. So i designed and 3d printed 1 inch capsules to store resistors, LEDs, transistors etc. and it worked! I then took some chipboard and looped it and stapled it to hold all of my capsules.
The built in Arduino
I drilled a hole into the side of the box to expose an Arduino USB I then broke out the pins through a slot and inserted them into the breadboard. This was great because Arduinos slide everywhere and break my jumpers.
The power strip
I mounted a power strip to the side, You wouldn’t think you would need one but I did so I did it and I can’t tell you how often it came in handy. Computer phone, soldering iron, etc.
The Wire holder and jumper holder
I had a wire holder with feeder holes, and a sliding drawer that held modules as well as a chipboard covered compartment that held Jumper wires.
The solder station.
I mounted helping hand in the bottom right of the box for holding perfboards. There was also a small computer fan with a carbon filter under it. For soldering in my dorm room, This box is just packed with features. Also there was a slot on top to hold a soldering iron holder.
The process was very amateur I cut parts and glued them in the shape of a briefcase with a breadboard in the center. but I was satisfied. All in all I got alot of use out of it.