No one ever said microcontroller housings can't be pretty.
NOTE: THE HOUSING CAP IS NOT INCLUDED IN THIS ITEM AND MUST BE ADDED TO YOUR CART SEPARATELY! MORE INFO ABOUT CAPS BELOW.
So here's the thing. The LilyPad Arduino
is made specifically for wearable e-textile projects, with oversized contacts meant to be sewn through with conductive thread rather than to be soldered to - but they CAN be soldered to, and the LilyPad can be used for just about anything most other standard Arduino-compatibles can be used for, so there's no fundamental reason why it can't be used in fixed applications. Finding ways to use things outside of their intended design parameters is the very spirit of hacking and makering and, to be blunt, I like the way the LilyPad looks. There are, however, no existing housings for the LilyPad that I am aware of - as you would expect, since they are meant to be sewn down instead of mounted in a case. Here then I present to you a round, pretty housing for a round, pretty microcontroller board, with an embossed lily on the cap no less!
The mainboard is held in place by three locating pins through the contact holes, and three barb clips around the edge. The board sits up on top of the base rather than down inside, allowing connection of the FDTI programmer while the cap is off without removing the board from the base. The mainboard can be installed in any orientation, however the three contact holes that will go over the locating pins must be either left unused or soldered in such a way that the holes are not blocked, and the FTDI connector should be located so that it is not blocked by the retaining clips.
There are two locations in the floor of the housing and three in the outer circumference (located 120° apart) which are flattened, thinned out, and crossmarked to be drilled out up to 6mm diameter for wire passthroughs. Of course these locations are merely convenient suggestions, you can drill it however you please.
The base will actually mount either a standard LilyPad mainboard, a 50mm LilyPad protoboard
, or a LilyPad XBee board
. It will NOT however take a LilyPad Simple, as the hole arangement is different (though I might change this in the future) and you would have no way of accessing the power switch inside the closed housing. Naturally it will not take a LilyPad SimpleSnap either.
This item is the standard case, which leaves 11mm of free space below the mainboard for routing wiring or placing a battery or whatever. Two alternate boards exist which have a second set of locating studs and barb clips for mounting a second board underneath the mainboard - one for a 20mm LilyPad protoboard
which can be found here
, and one for a standard (non-switched) LilyPad coin cell battery board
which can be found here
. The barb clip tabs holding down the mainboard were made quite large for easy removal of the mainboard to get underneath, in particular if you need to access and replace the battery.
The caps for the housing are listed separately for two reasons. First, the caps are available in different materials, including translucent Frosted Detail and Frosted Ultra Detail plastic, appropriate if you want to mount LEDs under the hood. Second, there are two types of caps. The standard cap
leaves 7mm minimum clearance above the mainboard, and the whole assembled housing with the standard cap is 32mm (1.25") tall. The second type of cap
makes the whole assembly 44mm (1.75") tall, with locating studs and mounting tabs on the underside of the lid to mount a 50mm LilyPad protoboard, a LilyPad XBee board, or even a second LilyPad mainboard if you're into that kind of thing; this type of lid leaves 12mm clearance between the two boards and 9mm minimum clearance above the upper breakout board.
NOTE ABOUT THIS BEING A PROTOTYPE/ALPHA VERSION OF THE HOUSING: The physical dimensions of the LilyPad are not terribly well documented and I don't have one in-hand to measure at the present time. The current dimensions were derived from the LilyPad EAGLE files as well as VERY CAREFUL rotoscoping of the photos from SparkFun's product pages, however - discretion being the better part of valor - I have intentionally left the board locating studs slightly undersized for this reason, so the boards might currently be a slightly loose fit. On top of this I'm willing to take suggestions how how to improve the design in regards to, say, the type of screws used, the dimensions and locations of the wire feedthroughs, or whatever else comes to mind. With all that in mind these cases are currently marked v0.1 on the insides and are subject to change.
Outer diameter: 72mm, not including base mounting flanges
Overall height : 32mm tall with standard cap, 44mm with breakout cap
Flanges: 16mm wide, 4mm thick, protrude 9.5mm from housing body
Mounting holes: 4mm inside diameter, 41.5mm from center of housing at 120° incriments
Clearance below mainboard: 11mm
Clearance around edges of mainboard: 4mm
Clearance above mainboard with standard cap: 7mm at edges, 10mm at center
REQUIRED HARDWARE (Not Included):
Three M3x8 screws
for mounting cap to the base, and three M4 screws for mounting the base to whatever. Whether or not the M3x8 screws for the cap will self-thread in the plastic remains to be seen, but there are clearance/expansion gaps on either side of the hole in pursuit of this goal. Worse comes to worse you may need to tap them out.