Deck The Workbench this Holiday Season.
Are you stuck with what to buy an engineering friend or family member? We were! As I am sure most of you know, people that work for us are Geeks, Engineers and the type of people to have a electronics workbench in our office or tucked away in the basement. The question was raised in the element14 offices on what to buy for our Engineer friends, family and colleges over the Holiday season. We had an ideas session to find the most desirable (and affordable) presents that we would like to receive as a gift divided into different price points, because there are not a lot of friends I could justify buying a $500 Oscilloscope for, no matter how many times they have fed the cat while I was on holiday.
Are these the product you would have chose in the $10, $20, $25, $50, $100, $150, $500 price ranges?
Think we are talking Reindeer poop and you can do better?
Then post your essential products and stocking fillers in our price ranges below.
Deck The Bench - element14 Engineer Wish List
Flush Cut Snips
A cheap pair of snips are always a welcome addition to any tool kit.
You could be snipping legs of freshly soldered components or breaking free from ziptie handcuffs in some James Bond-esk adventures. You never know when you need a cheap pair of snips.
M-F Jumper Cables
Jumper cables, and by extension, Breadboards are a must for any engineer or maker. They have revolutionized prototyping circuits to the point where you can test out a project in full without wiring, soldering or creating your own PCBs.
DIP Breakout PBC
This is a PCB with tracks and pads to breakout for 6 of the most common small surface mount ICs.
It gives you a great way to access the pins of the tiny IC in a more manageable way using terminal strips or jumpers.
The ESP8266 is quickly becoming the industry standard for makers and engineers to add well defined and supported WiFi to their IoT Projects.
This tiny, sub $10 chipset and antenna is a must buy.
Weller Battery Powered Soldering Iron
Built by Weller and recommended by e14phil for light and handy duty.
ESP8266 Dev Board
Adafruits super tiny ESP8266 WiFI Dev Board for tiny experiments in IoT suggested by peteroakes
The ESP8266 is becoming an industry standard in miniature WiFi Connectivity for IoT Devices. With the addition of a Micro controller and IO pins the feather is a great addition to any prototyping set up.
RDM-KL43Z Dev Board
.In terms of dev-boards the FRDM range is my favorite currently The is good value at$20 it has a built-in 4-digit LCD screen for easy debugging or presenting information and the micro-controller has lots of memory and built-in DAC and high-resolution ADC and tons of I/O pins and as easy to use as Arduino
Magnetic Field Sensor
"This flux-gate magnetometer plus a multimeter or oscilloscope provides endless hours of experimentation (see this Project14 blog post and the comments section for ideas), as me and jw0752 found out." - shabaz
The Engineering essential for almost any job.
It is cheap, cheerful, portable, accurate, easy to use and can be thrown into your kit bag without too much guilt.
Flick, A 3D Tracking
Gesture interface with I2C interface.
Raspberry Pi NoIR
The Raspberry Pi 8MP camera is always a welcome addition to any stocking, but peteroakes recommends a twist with the Pi NoIR. This is the official Raspberry Pi low light Infrared sensitive camera for Night, IR and UV Photography
58 Piece Precision Screwdriver Set
There are good 58 reasons to buy this screwdriver set.
That is less than 50c per reason!
This set was recommended by community members.
Arduino Uno, 65 Piece Starter Kit with Breadboad
A great introduction to microcontrollers, breadboards, programming and building your own interactive projects.
Tenma Digital Multimeter
4.5 Digit LCD Display, Data Hold, Diode Test, Continuity Buzzer (always useful), Batteries included... Everything a growing Boy or Girl needs! - Again suggested by shabaz
EXTECH Digital Multimeter
Next up in the, "You should
always have a Multimeter on you" section is another cheap and reliable autorange multimeter from EXTECH.
Suggested by fmilburn
TI myParts Kit
A great introduction and useful parts kit from Texas Instruments that includes a collection of resistors, ICs, Capacitors, sensors, a screwdriver, LEDs and a buzzer.
Raspberry Pi 3 Starter Kit
This includes the Sense Hat, IBM Watson IoT systems training modules as well as everything else you need to get started in the world of Raspberry Pi.
Tenma Bench Power Supply
Sometimes a Single channel programmable bench top power supply is all you need to light up your world!
- Suggested by Workshopshed
Insulated Tool Set
A 11 Piece Insulated tool kit that manufactured to IEC 60900 standards for hazardous work environments. These hansom yellow and red tools are rated and tested to 10000 VAC. Who wants to test them?
Beaglebone Blue Robotics Kit
The Beaglebone Blue is the the Beaglebone Black's bigger brother. Built around the the ever-popular BB linux dev board but with lots of additional features, Servo, Motor and Bluetooth connectivity to help you with developing your robot building skills.
Bitscope USB Oscilloscope / Logic Analyzer
Weller Soldering Station
A fantastic, versatile, no frills soldering station. There is not much more to be said about it. suggested by peteroakes
Pyropen Piezo Butane Gas Soldering Iron Kit
A portable Butane Gas soldering iron, that works on the go! No power required for this trusty little, self igniting, hot air blower and Iron from Weller.
Suggested by the-dubster
A handy and easy to use 10x 70x 200x magnification hand held digital microscope. These handheld microscopes are great for really getting to the route cause of problems by giving you the best view of the issue.
Tektronix make some of the best oscilloscopes in the world and this $500 model gives you most of the desirable features without the professional pricetag.
Keysight InfiniiVision 1000x Oscilloscope
Analog Discovery 2 USB Oscilloscope,
Flexing our price points a little, this device is around the $200 mark and is a
The Analog Discovery 2 is a USB oscilloscope and multi-function instrument that allows users to measure, visualize, generate, record and control mixed-signal circuits of all kinds.
Stereo Zoom Microscope
The DI-LI 900-T is a trinocular Stereo Zoom Microscope specially suitable for LED, PCB inspection, pressing plating and electronic component inspection. It comes with fluorescent right light and then trinocular port enables the addition of photographic or video capability.
Think we have got the basics wrong?
Please comment below your alternatives and what you would like to get as a gift.