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    Deck Out your Workbench for the Holidays

    Do you know an Engineer or Maker on the Go? Or maybe a Pi Enthusiast?

     

    Join the element14 Community this holiday season as we help to deck out your workbench, or someone you know that needs that extra bit of hardware to get their projects completed!

     

    We're returning for another year with a list of products, suggestions and even giveaways this time for the Engineer or Maker in your life, or maybe yourself if you feel you deserve a treat or to spend your holiday season earnings!

     

    The return of the element14 Community Elves

    Who have some outer world assistance from the element14 presents team:

     

    Engineer & Maker Wish List - A Vulcan's First Christmas!

     

    Engineer & Maker Wish List - An Elf's Tale

     

    Engineer & Maker Wish List - A Wooden Christmas

     

    For the Engineer who needs Test & Measurement Tools on the Go Giveaway!

     

     

    If you're an Engineer who needs to use Test & Measurement Tools on the Go! Then head on over to enter the giveaway (click here: Holiday Gift List Giveaway - Test & Measurement Tools on the Go! ) where you can win the following equipment:

     

     

    USB OscilloscopeUSB Oscilloscope

    Although computers used to be the size of a workbench oscilloscope, you can now analyse most signals using your mobile phone - so it makes sense that we're now in the world of USB oscilloscopes! This multicomp pro hardware is ideal for an on-the-go analysis when and where it's required.

    Digital Multimeter with BluetoothDigital Multimeter with Bluetooth

    Taking the readings from your electronics is always important, is there continuity? Is there a signal? Well, you can't beat the signal (most of the time) use this to transmit your readings to your phone or other bluetooth device when you need to monitor, keep track or log the details as you go.

    Digital CalipersDigital Calipers

    Whether you're 3D modelling, or ensuring a bolt is within specification, these accurate digital calipers should be in your repertoire regardless, a ruler just doesn't cut it anymore!

     

    Circuit Assembly Tools for All Giveaway!

     

     

    Every Engineer and Maker needs to prototype with their tools, whether it's with vero/proto board or a breadboard. These Circuit Assembly Tools for all! are perfect to give the holiday season the snip, enter the competition here: Holiday Gift List Giveaway - Circuit Assembly Tools for all!  to be in with a chance to win the following hardware:

     

    Anti-Static Wrist StrapAnti-Static Wrist Strap

    While you may be tempted to pick up your hardware and electronics and get to work straight away, static and electrical discharge is a very real threat to your equipment and some of it can be very sensitive. Bring yourself down to earth with a wrist-strap and ground the discharge before it can do any real damage.

    Jumper Wire StripsJumper Wire Strips

    Sometimes you work on a breadboard and you just want to use a length of wire that's 'just right' and then not want to move it again, perhaps that's just me, but these neat pieces of wiring allow you to color code your layout and keep it tidy.

    Jumper WiresJumper Wires

    When you need to bridge components over one another, or your wire strips just aren't quite long enough by themselves, these are the quick and dirty, but practical, solution to prototyping.

    Knipex Cutters and PliersKnipex Cutters and Pliers

    There are a huge array of wire cutters in this selection here, more than you probably realised you need, for all sorts of wire strengths, sizes and situations to make sure your project is cut down to size.

    TurntableTurntable

    When you need to easily rotate your equipment for access, or perhaps for its first photographic opportunity, a turntable's one of those pieces of hardware you didn't realise you needed, but wanted. Currently this product's only available on our Newark store, but will be shipped to you anywhere for the giveaway!

     

    Raspberry Pi Essentials for the Raspberry Pi Multimedia Enthusiast Giveaway!

     

     

    Whether you're only just starting out with a Raspberry Pi, or you're needing another for a project, hit the ground running with a starter kit in this giveaway to get yourself editing with multimedia with an exclusive 4k Video digital camera, and also a add-on soundcard board! - who knows, we may upgrade it to a Raspberry Pi 4 starter kit - click the link to be in with a chance to win: Holiday Gift List Giveaway - Raspberry Pi Essentials for the following hardware:

     

    Raspberry Pi 4 DesktopRaspberry Pi 4 Desktop

    From the SDCard, to a keyboard and the cables needed to getting started on your multimedia, engineering, maker or programming journey. This is the basis for any budding creator to sink their teeth into the platform that's been very popular across the world and in education through to industrial applications. You can also find out more about Raspberry Pi on the Community.

    Speaker PhatSpeaker Phat

    The add-on board that adds something a bit missing from the Raspberry Pi, and that's audio. Hear what your Raspberry Pi has to say with this audio interface and speaker combination.

    HD 4k 30fps Waterproof CameraHD 4k 30fps Waterproof Camera

    Take your footage in all sorts of environments, indoors and out or in the field with this equipment and then process it on your Raspberry Pi as part of your project, or maybe record it to become one of our element14 presents video content producers yourself! Show us your best side with the high resolution camera.

     

    What Else do you Wish For?

     

    Scroll down to find other inspiring hardware, equipment and parts for your project! Let us know what you wish for in the comments below.

     

    Wera Advent CalendarWera Advent Calendar

    Who cares about chocolates, socks or a picture every day for an advent calendar? As an Engineer or Maker, you want hardware, tools and equipment to build up to the holiday season! Surely this is ideal then? Maybe it's just us that thinks so, but why not start off with something a bit fun anyway?

     

     

    Prototyping the Fast Way

     

    Male to Male Jumper CablesMale to Male Jumper Cables

    For the prototyping engineer and the budding maker, whether you're connecting to an Arduino or a BeagleBoard with a breadboard in between, you'll need a pack of these, and if you're like me, you'll go through a lot of them!

    Male to Female Jumper CablesMale to Female Jumper Cables

    You'd be forgiven for thinking these are the same or not needed as other jumper cables, however these certainly make the difference if you're connecting to a Raspberry Pi or any other development board that has pre-populated pins instead of sockets!

    Magnifier with Helping HandsMagnifier with Helping Hands

    "I've only got one pair of hands!" well now you have two! Whether the item you're soldering is too hot to handle, or you just need to get a grip onto a piece of hardware while you look at it, everyone needs a helping hand now and again.

    Dry Erase Magnetic Project MatDry Erase Magnetic Project Mat

    I've lost count of the sheer number of times I've been taking apart some hardware, and the screw has rolled off the table. Or I need to make a note and my phone isn't responding to my 'OK Google' request amidst the noise. Suitable for working with hardware that's not so sensitive to magnets

    16gByte microSD Card16gByte microSD Card

    Even Raspbian now needs at least an 8gByte SD Card to run on your Raspberry Pi. I now have so many of these little cards, they wear out from the constant image writing. Always in need of more *makes note to buy another*

    Insulated Screwdriver SetInsulated Screwdriver Set

    When you absolutely have to get into that hardware, and you don't know what surprises might lurk inside it. Insulated screwdrivers not only try to protect you, but also what you're working on from making a circuit it isn't supposed to. Makes me shudder to think of it.

    Components and Sensor Kit for Raspberry PiComponents and Sensor Kit for Raspberry Pi

    To get you started with your Internet of Things project or to monitor your garden shed (at least in England) get your blinken LEDs going and read the temperature of your child's cot. Or maybe just your breath, up to you!

    Introducing new Engineers and Makers

     

    CodeBug and accessoriesCodeBug and accessories

    Running from a CR2032 battery (included, and also a USB cable) the CodeBug is the cutest, easiest to program, wearable, portable embedded electronics platform that is very 'hackable' in what it can do. Introducing including a small LED array and being able to communicate on the 'pins' to other hardware, this is a great starter to embedded hardware control.

    BBC micro:bit and accessoriesBBC micro:bit and accessories

    Introduced to the United Kingdom as a spiritual successor to the BBC Micro computer, the BBC micro:bit is a well developed microcontroller platform to introduce programming techniques to young minds and those who want to be introduced to embedded hardware control. A nice one to pick up.

     

    Decking out your Workbench

     

    All Purpose Bit SetAll Purpose Bit Set

    When you're short on space, need to immediately repair something and you're not sure what you're going to encounter? This all purpose bit set has you sorted. Perfect for a trip to a repair cafe or hackspace, too.

    Large Red ToolbagLarge Red Toolbag

    How're you going to carry your hardware to the workshop? Or to work, or to the makerspace? Well, with a suitable tool bag, your outdoors store bought bag will only take you so far with those sharp and pointy objects that you're carrying. You need something hard wearing!

    Rotary Tool SetRotary Tool Set

    If you're polishing off a project, or cutting into something small you need a fast little motor and nifty tools to get you to that end goal. It's small, it's fast and it spins. Chances are you needed this and didn't realise it.

    Bench ViseBench Vise

    When you absolutely, totally, need another pair of hands that do not move. Can also act as a makeshift heatsink, though don't try to solder while using it for that exact reason. Also includes an anvil.

    Soldering Tool KitSoldering Tool Kit

    On a bit of a portability kick, I'll admit that I'm more often asked to repair someone else's computer software problem than to ensure wires are stripped and attached - then again, the solder stations are often in use at Leeds Hackspace, so I could probably do with one of these.

     

    Soldering StationSoldering Station

    I feel this should be a standard household item, whether or not you have a workbench, having your own soldering station is like a typical item you need to repair any electronics. In fact, I've had to use this to repair ornaments and jewelry as well. Okay, it was dress jewelry, but still.

    Multicomp Pro 150W Soldering StationMulticomp Pro 150W Soldering Station

    We may be a bit crazy for including more than one soldering station in this list, but it's all about having a choice with our wishes, right? The Multicomp Pro range is bringing the professional hardware to levels for that professional home office workbench.

     

    Ratchet Socket Bit Tool KitRatchet Socket Bit Tool Kit

    I thought that this type of kit was only useful for vehicles, and even then I wouldn't need one anymore, I have breakdown cover. Yeah I was wrong, sometimes fixtures need to be mechanically put in place, or removed for enclosures and projects can get pretty creative. Not everything uses duct tape.

    129 Piece Cased Tool Set129 Piece Cased Tool Set

    When you need a set of tools, but don't necessarily need or have a carry case for them all. Especially if you want everything in one place, and in its place, without flailing around in your bag and wondering where that one particular sized screwdriver head has gotten to...

    Assorter CaseAssorter Case

    With drawers that have catches on them and a carry handle, this isn't just a set of drawers to save you scratching your fine, pine furniture. These are useful boxes to carry around your jumper cables, development boards and parts in at least an assorted way.

    Tektronix MDO34Tektronix MDO34

    Frankly, this is on the Community Engineer Staff wish list, this is a serious piece of kit that combines several different functionalities into one package, not least an oscilloscope with a built in spectrum analyser. If you get this for the holidays from your wish list, can we visit?

    Embed your Processing Power

     

    Raspberry Pi Camera BoardRaspberry Pi Camera Board & Raspberry Pi NoIR Camera BoardRaspberry Pi NoIR Camera Board

    These almost complete the Raspberry Pi to be feature-full. Connecting to the CSI port on the Raspberry Pi you can opt for the standard or no Infra-Red filter cameras, capturing at up to 60 frames per second and in 8 megapixels, you'd be kinda silly not to want one of these on your hardware.

    Pocket BeaglePocket Beagle

    The little pupper of the Beagleboard BeagleBone family, the Pocket Beagle makes for an excellent, open source alternative for a single board computer. This board is teeny tiny small and powerful with a lot of general purpose digital input and output with lots of analog input.

    Raspberry Pi 4 Model B (1GB, 2GB or 4GB RAM)Raspberry Pi 4 Model B (1GB, 2GB or 4GB RAM)

    The latest and fastest Raspberry Pi to date, with the same footprint and connectivity as its predecessors, almost everyone has a Raspberry Pi at least lying in a drawer these days, and with it being part of most school curriculum you'll likely be teaching how to program to a younger relative. The onboard WiFi and Bluetooth just seal the deal, especially with the updated processor, USB 3 and Gigabit ethernet!

    Raspberry Pi Sense HATRaspberry Pi Sense HAT

    Not many devices you can say you're working with that have been sent up into space. As part of the AstroPi initiative by the Raspberry Pi Foundation, sensor boards like these are currently orbiting Earth running school children's code. They're great for sensor readouts, displaying them in various ways or creating little games using the onboard joystick.

    3D Printing Pen3D Printing Pen

    Unfortunately this isn't available everywhere, but I couldn't resist putting it on this list. This is effectively an extruder from a 3D printer, in your hand. I've used mine to repair 3D prints or small plastic devices where I couldn't really use glue or something similar. Oh, and of course free-hand models for fun.

    Arduino Mega 2560Arduino Mega 2560

    I consider this the grunt horse of the Arduino boards, that launched a thousand 3D printers. RAMPS 1.4 is an add-on board that's typically used with the Mega 2560 and almost every single 3D printer available is based around this combination. So this is one, very capable, Arduino.

    BeagleBone BlackBeagleBone Black

    A fully opensource solution to embedded electronics hardware around a single board computer. Pretty much fully documented, and customisable, down to the dual microcontrollers that run at 200Mhz (PRUSS) on the processor to the 1Ghz CPU with HDMI output. Many people compare this board to the Raspberry Pi, but really they can work alongside each other, or completely independently. With this, you can run low-level easily.

    BeagleBone AIBeagleBone AI

    The latest offering from BeagleBoard.org is not for the faint maker, to take advantage of this hardware you should be up to the challenge of embedded Linux, push your programming knowledge and get down and gritty with device tree compiling. For this, you get a fully open source, documented processor, board, schematics and the ability to embed it in your design from source or scratch, unlike some other single board computers - this one gives you full control! This time packing more power than its BeagleBone Black counterpart. You can find out more at BeagleBoard

     

    Arduino UnoArduino Uno

    Whether you're new or old to microcontroller programming, the ATMega328P based Arduino is the one that started it all and is still a reasonable staple for prototyping a circuit, or just turning your holiday lights on and off, we won't be choosy.

    Arduino NanoArduino Nano

    Moving to a project that needs a little more portability, the Nano is effectively the Uno in another package. Small and slim for even wearable projects, and you can never have enough Arduino to work with.

     

    Tools to go the Extra Mile with your Project

     

    Borescope with 2.3" DisplayBorescope with 2.3" Display

    Gets to parts that other cameras simply cannot reach, within reason. Need to view down a pipe? Or inside an awkward piece of machinery or electronics? Then let this articulated eye on a stick help you out.

    Raspberry Pi IoT Learner Kit with IBM WatsonRaspberry Pi IoT Learner Kit with IBM Watson

    It's the combination that really drives the benefit of this kit, setting up the Raspberry Pi Sense HAT with the Raspberry Pi and an intelligent place to put the data in the cloud with IBM Watson sets you up for monitoring with the Internet of Things.

    Matrix CreatorMatrix Creator

    While sold as a daughter add-on board for the Raspberry Pi, the Matrix Creator sports its own FPGA and processor to function to some extent on its own. With a microphone array that rivals an Amazon Echo and a ring of RGB LEDs I've seen this device be used at the heart of drones, let alone robotic devices.

    PicoScope USB OscilloscopePicoScope USB Oscilloscope

    Most devices that you use to look at digital signals, and analogue readings are relatively large devices with a screen and probes and they take up bench space. Somewhat lots of bench space, and maybe you already have a laptop on that bench. With this, you can use that laptop as your oscilloscope. Makes things a bit easier!

     

    153 Assorted Tool Kit153 Assorted Tool Kit

    For the maker or engineer who doesn't have everything (yet). This useful collection would be suitable for an every day carry or a backup in emergency for the zombie apocalypse.

    Pi-Top Modular Development Laptop KitPi-Top Modular Development Laptop Kit

    Setup and create your own laptop based around the Raspberry Pi, with the GPIO ports broken out to useful components and an added Real-Time-Clock you'll be either creating software or controlling hardware wherever you go.

    PiFace Motor, Relay, Control and DisplayPiFace Motor, Relay, Control and Display

    The PiFace add-on boards for the Raspberry Pi have been an ideal way for interfacing with some real heavy hitting hardware, we're talking higher voltage control, sensors and making things move. These add-ons are controlled via Python for ease and have tried and tested libraries sat behind them for use. They should still be compatible with the Raspberry Pi 4!

    Flick HAT and accessoriesFlick HAT and accessories

    Touch sensing is finally taking its place in computing hardware, it's on mobile phones, virtual reality controllers and now gestures on your mobile phone. So why not add it to your Raspberry Pi project with the Flick HAT gesture sensor and supporting hardware?

     

    Touchscreen Case EnclosureTouchscreen Case Enclosure

    There aren't many cases that you can claim are LEGO compatible, as well as supporting Raspberry Pi add-on boards and the official touch screen. At least there's this one!

    BeagleBone DisplayBeagleBone Display

    Working with embedded hardware's all fine and well, however it can help to see what you're doing! Whether it's for while you're developing on the BeagleBone hardware, or if it's for an embedded hardware project, you can use the LCD display with your project.

    BeagleBone Robotics CapeBeagleBone Robotics Cape

    With a footprint not too dissimilar from the BeagleBone Blue, this add-on cape expands the BeagleBone's capabilities to control the very motors needed for robitics to function, and perhaps even drones!

     

    3D Printing and Printers

     

    Multicomp i-20 3D PrinterMulticomp i-20 3D Printer

    When you want to get your hands on, deep and dirty into 3D printing and customise every possible setting to configure your 3D print, Multicomp's sturdy offering is there with its metal chassis and solid build while keeping things simple. A decent edition, especially if you have to move it around a bit.

    Lulzbot Mini 2 3D PrinterLulzbot Mini 2 3D Printer

    With the ability to customise the printer as much as you dare, Lulzbot offers itself up as an 'either/or' when it comes to letting you get down into the details or buying off-shelf parts and using standard setup configurations to output a quality print.

    Creality CR-20 ProCreality CR-20 Pro

    A back to basics 3D printer with hands-on control, similar in vein to the multicomp i-20, except in a different form factor and not quite as customisable. Creality have a good reputation for building printers that are up for modification at an affordable price point, one to get your hands on if you're familiar with 3D printing and you're not afraid of switching up your slicer!

    Ultimaker S5Ultimaker S5

    Some 3D printers we just wish we were able to use and have a go with, the Ultimaker S5 may be more suited to the workplace than the home office, however some people really like to wish big! Capable of handling soluble print materials alonside ABS and PLA, the Ultimaker S5 is a printer with a big reputation, and print volume.

    3D Printing Filament3D Printing Filament

    ABS, PLA, your plastic of choice. 3D Printing with a machine such as the Lulzbot Mini 2 or Multicomp i-20, or even a 3D Printing Pen. It's one of the most useful prototyping tools of this century, and filament is the fuel.

     

    What's the holiday season without a little reward?

    Join in with the festivities and you'll see yourself rewarded with a badge, as usual there's the typical badge, and the extra golden badge for those that work out how to go the extra mile

     

     

    Login and Register, and 'Add Comment' below to share with us your shopping basket from one of our online stores to let us know what exactly you would want for the holidays, or simply post with a link!

     

    Don't forget to enter the giveaways by clicking through to the links above!