Where do I get Sparkcore's breadboard

One of the other thing I really love about my Sparkcore is the breadboard that it came with. It’s really high quality and I absolutely love it!

May I ask where can I purchase the same ones?

Many thanks!

From Spark Devices of course! Haha…

btw will the RC Car platform be available for purchase on the website? I guess I just never realized how much I need one. It would be cool to add a pen to it.

The breadboard is actually pretty standard; there are only two changes we made to the standard design:

  1. It turns out breadboards come in “more force” and “less force” models. More force is better for many products because it holds in your stuff better. Less force is better for the Spark Core because with so many pins adjacent to each other, the more force boards hold onto the Core a little too tight. I think the more force boards are the default, so we ordered less force.
  2. We ordered them in plain white. Why do breadboards always come in that terrible off-white color?

If you guys like them we could definitely start selling them piecemeal!

@BDub as for the RC car, we stopped selling them because it turned out we were losing money on each one. Shipping them is pretty expensive so we were undercharging for everything that we sent. We might consider putting it back on the site at a higher price point if people really want it, though.

@zach Approx. how much would you want to sell just the RC Car Chassis for? If you went through the trouble of bringing the whole RC Car Kit back, it would probably make sense to turn it into a general robotics platform with the motor shield and shield shield combined into one board with some extra prototyping areas. Would also be sweet to give it a easy way to add a pen on a servo :wink:

As for the breadboard, I never would have thought of changing the force of the pins… great job! I do find that the gold plated headers are much easier in arduinos and breadboards than the tin plated ones. I think because the tin is hot dipped or HASL like PCBs, and makes it irregular and/or thicker. Gold is actually plated and smooth/thin.

Still waiting on my Cores, but my buddy got his and let me login as him on the app and webIDE… so I was controlling his Cores from like 20 miles away… so freaking cool. I coded up a SOS blinker sketch real quick and he said, “it’s morse code!” haha… mayday mayday! I need help 20 miles away! Loving the tools thus far. When you sit back and think about how easy it is to reprogram a sophisticated microcontroller from that far away through the internet, you can’t help but marvel at the sheer awexomeness and power at your fingertips!


@zach Yes, please start selling them!! I’d love to have a few more of them. This less force feel is great and they just feel a lot sturdier.

In a nutshell, it’s awesome in the midst of all the cheap Chinese-made breadboards out there. I recently used such a breadboard to hold my header pins to solder my Xbee breakout board… turned out the breadboard itself wasn’t even! So, now I have a breakout with slanted pins. :frowning:

I didn’t know that breadboard was included (other than the one with Maker kit) so I already ordered few 170pin mini-boards: http://reinventor.files.wordpress.com/2011/01/170breadboard.jpg

I counted that they are only 4 row longer than Core (12 + 1 margin) so it could be interesting size. There are no power rails on sides, so I’m not sure if I have to twist component legs to reach or do some frankenstein wire soldering, but theoretically it should work.

Let us know how that goes for you, we thought about including those instead in the Spark Core packaging to make it super super small :slight_smile:

Generally, I prefer more force, because it holds on tighter to jumper wires, which have a tendency to wiggle around if they’re connected to something external to the breadboard. This can mean the difference between random I2C and SPI errors and the connection operating smoothly! That said, you can have boards that are so tight the pins on the jumper wires actually bend when you try to insert them.

The board that came with my Core seems to be in the “Goldielocks” zone to me, being not too hard and not too loose.

The only other boards I’ve found like this are from BusBoard Prototype Systems, which are available on Amazon.com and Prime Eligible! They’re very good quality, so if you want something like the board that came with your Spark Core, I highly recommend giving them a try.

By the way, I must say opening Spark Core box when it arrived and seeing the little breadboard in there really put a smile on my face.

I will agree that the force is not too tight, and not too loose. It’s just right for something with the number of pins that the Spark Core has. Feels and looks like a high quality breadboard!

Oh no. Please don’t change the current breadboard to a smaller one! IMHO, the size is perfect. Not too big, high quality and leaving just enough room to do lots of prototyping work. If it was a smaller one, I would have had to use my own larger breadboard.

So, I vote to keep the current breadboard!

1 Like

Yup, these breadboards are just the right size to me. If you look at the front and back of it, you’ll notice little bumps on one side and grooves on the other; that’s so you can “click” them together to create a longer board! The same applies for the sides of it as well, plus the power rails are removable.

Definitely my absolute favorite size for breadboards, I must own close to twenty of the BBP brand ones I linked in my last post.

Those “mini” sized boards are absolutely worthless for most prototyping. The only real uses I’ve found for them is building a Bareduino (ATmega328P + Crystal + LDO) and for using an Xprotolab (it’s a perfect fit).

1 Like

i use the mini breadboard to carry around my spark in a small altoids tin…because arduinos love altoids.

1 Like

The big one was the right choice. These minis are great if you are using things with 4-6pin connector, or have just few sensors, but more complex circuits are far easier to do with enough space. For beginners those power rails are the greatest thing to keep it clean and easier to understand.

Here is 3 simple projects from first few days. 2 Cores are dummies and none of them are powered, but I do have semi-usefull codes for them in my Build library that I switch back and forth.

For example that motor circuit I made at first with big one and still had many errors. But once completed, it was fun to move it to smaller board. There is still 4 empty slots (+many unused pins) to add potentiometer or something to control speed. With displays, I saved space and wires by aligning connectors directly to core and wiring missing pins under the Core.

That said, I love these mini ones. 90% time I’m using these tiny boards and I can store my project on them without “wasting” the big one. (Even though along with 5 Cores I also got 5 big boards…) I just pop Core out, flash another firmware to it with only usb cable connected and put it to an another board. Only if these had same kind of connectors as the big one to join two boards together.

I even named my main Core “Luigi” after that green board. :ghost:

1 Like

Is there a case available to buy that the Boron LTE Kit breadboard fits in? Or a printable design?

That’s a bit subjective question… but I might have something for you. I recently created an enclosure to house the breadboard for quick prototype deployment. The base accepts the entire breadboard with the particle device positioned as far as possible to one end of the breadboard. From there, the case top is 2 sections, one section is rather enclosed to protect the electronics while one side of the top has openings for better temperature/humidity measurements. I supposed I could edit the top to be one monolithic piece if you need. The top is held on by the screws that are most common in PC cases (The screws I used are the ones that hold the motherboard to the case or secure the PCI expansion cards to the case. I have hundreds collected from disassembling old computers over the years.)

I do all this in tinkercad so I’ll share the link if it helps (the .stl file is posted… I’ll add some photos to the posting later):