board::mini

by bmc::labs

The ultimate vehicle-hacking platform

View all updates Apr 01, 2021

Desk Frame & GridBox Housing

by Florian Eich

We come bearing gifts! A small one, a bigger one and a preview of things to come.

The small one

When working with development boards, the pins on the underside of the PCB are always naked on the surface - the desk, the mat or worse: something on a vehicle that has a lacquered finish! We solve this problem with the desk frame:

mini::base bolted into desk frame

mini::base next to desk frame, desk frame bolted to desk

Yeah, yeah it’s a gimmick. And yeah, yeah, we’re perhaps a bit OCD about the whole "pins on the working surface" thing. Nevertheless, we like this little detail and wanted to share it with you. It also has holes, so you can use it to cleanly bolt your mini::base to the wall if you like!

The desk frame will be included with every starter pack. It’s 3D printed, and we’re also making the design available through our GitHub repo.

The bigger one

The philosophy of the project is to be ready for prototyping, and potentially ready for a product application. But to achieve that, the boards cannot stay "naked" - they need a housing! Ideally of course, we would like that housing to be solid, IP certified for a vehicle application, all the good stuff.

We can’t give the housing an IP rating (just yet), but we still believe this is a solid start to protect a mini::base plus mini::grid stack from the environment:

Rendering of GridBox housing

For our own applications, we are looking at machining the housing from aluminium, but it is designed to be 3D printed for now. We’re considering offering it for sale in both versions at some point, but in any case, we’ll be making the designs available through our GitHub repo.

The Preview

More housings are in the works! It’s not our primary focus so it’s not the fastest work ever, but there is a PitBox (housing for mini::base plus mini::pit) in the works, and then some other nice wrappings for things we haven’t announced yet. We’re worth subscribing to!

Stay up to date by checking out our campaign page, following our updates, and visiting the bmc::board website.

About the Author

Florian Eich

cdbrkfxrpt


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$65

Early Bird board::mini Starter Bundle

Everything you need to get started with the board::mini ecosystem, including one mini::base, one mini::out breakout board, and one out::cable for connecting the latter to an ST-Link/V2 adapter (not included).


$49

Early Bird mini::base

An STM32F103 microcontroller board featuring a CAN transceiver with a hardware filter and ESD protection, a microSD card slot, a 24 V power supply, an atmospheric conditions sensor, a USB Type-C port, and much more. Ready to be combined with one of our expansion boards.


$19

mini::out

A simple breakout board for the mini::base. It includes two 12-pin headers for IO access, a JTAG connector and a reset button for flashing the firmware, and a spring loaded clamp that provides CAN bus connectivity and up to 24 V of power. Comes with a custom out::cable programming cable for connecting your mini::out to an ST-Link/V2 adapter (not included).


$35

Early Bird mini::grid

Supports GPS L1 C/A code and quad-band GSM connectivity. Antennas can be connected via U.FL connectors, and a nano-SIM-card slot is located on the back. A pair of Binder subminiature connectors carries power and data to and from mini::grid.


$25

Early Bird mini::pit

Based around the ESP32-WROOM-U, which supports both WLAN 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth LE, base::pit also adds a second CAN bus with transceiver, filter, and ESD protection. A pair of Binder subminiature connectors carries power and data to and from mini::pit.


$75

board::mini Starter Bundle

Everything you need to get started with the board::mini ecosystem, including one mini::base, one mini::out breakout board, and one out::cable for connecting the latter to an ST-Link/V2 adapter (not included).


$59

mini::base

An STM32F103 microcontroller board featuring a CAN transceiver with a hardware filter and ESD protection, a microSD card slot, a 24 V power supply, an atmospheric conditions sensor, a USB Type-C port, and much more. Ready to be combined with one of our expansion boards.


$39

mini::grid

Supports GPS L1 C/A code and quad-band GSM connectivity. Antennas can be connected via U.FL connectors, and a nano-SIM-card slot is located on the back. A pair of Binder subminiature connectors carries power and data to and from mini::grid.


$29

mini::pit

Based around the ESP32-WROOM-U, which supports both WLAN 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth LE, base::pit also adds a second CAN bus with transceiver, filter, and ESD protection. A pair of Binder subminiature connectors carries power and data to and from mini::pit.

Credits

bmc::labs

solid engineering. sustainable code.


Sebastian Kruse

Florian Eich

Camilla Lotti

Jannik Sch├╝tz

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