Nanode 5

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Component List Component Legs

Front of Board Soldering Legs

Back of board Cutting Legs


Welcome to your Nanode 5 in kit form. You will find in your pink bag that you have a whole heap of components, a PCB and a slip of paper with an url on it that has led you here. Within a couple of hours soldering you will have a fully working Nanode 5.

If you are new to soldering and want some tips – have a look at this guide. Building a Nanode is just a case of replicating the steps shown in the following picture sequence – no real electronics experience needed – just basic soldering skills.

Tools you will need

  • Soldering iron
  • Solder
  • Solder sucker in case you make a mistake
  • Side Cutters – to cut the excess component leads off
  • Multi-meter
  • Programming cable – you can buy one from us for £5 or if you have an FTDI cable or similar you may use that.
  • Once you have built your Nanode, you will need access to a computer so you can program it with your application.

Kit Layout

Here you see all the resistors, capacitors, connectors, crystals and ICs needed to make the standard build of Nanode 5.

MAC Chip

You should find that the tiny MAC address IC has already been soldered in place on the back of the PCB.
We have soldered this on for you as we were worried it would get lost in the kit bag.

Orientation or board

Make sure the board is the right way up. All the photographs are taken form this orientation to keep it as simple as possible. If you look closely on the board you will see that it is marked in white writing showing the position of each of the components.


We are going to start with soldering the resistors in place. Most of them form a central strip down the middle of the board (apart from one stray one when you get to step three.)

Tips: Resistor leads should be bent very close to the resistor body. To do this, hold the resistor between thumb and first-finger, and use the other hand to bend the resistor lead as tight to the body as possible. Work methodically, – it looks neater if the resistors are all inserted the same direction so that the colour code can be read easily from left to right. The resistors supplied all have a slightly separate brown band at one end. This brown band should go on the right hand side.



Insert each of the resistor values in turn, for example insert all five of the 10K at a time and then solder then from the back of the board, cutting off the excess leads with your side cutters as close to the board as possible.

We will work through each of the resistor values in turn. We will now solder five 10K, four 51R, three 270R, one each of 1R, 10R and the 2K.

10K Resistors

There are five 10k resistors (they should come in your kit in a strip of 5, if not, you can easily identify them as their colour coding bands are as follows: Brown Black Black Red (The last band on all resistors is Brown). Place all 5 in their position on the board then solder them in place.

51R Resistors

Next up are four 51R resistors – again they can be easily identified them from their colour coding bands which are as follows: Green Brown Black Gold. (The last band on all resistors is Brown).


Now add the three 270R resistors – again they can be easily identified them from their colour coding bands which are as follows: Red, Purple, Black, Black.

Note: Two run down the centre of the board with the third one on the far right of the board as shown in the picture.

1R, 10R, and 2K

The last three resistors go in the following places.

The 1R resistor is to placed on the board where it says “ferrite”. Colour coding bands are as follows: Brown, Black, Black ,Silver

The 10R resistor’s coding bands as follows: Brown, Black, Black ,Gold

Note: The silver and gold colours look very similar in certain light conditions – if in doubt use a multimeter to check the value before you fit it.

2K is Red Black Black Brown

Note – you will see on the board there is space for other resistors, these are not needed in your Nanode 5 kits so ignore them.

IC Sockets

Next we are going to solder the three IC sockets. These sockets will be where the chips sit. There are two longer ones -28 pin and one shorter one – 14 pin. You need to make sure that you solder the socket the right way round.

Notches in sockets

If you look carefully at the IC socket you will see that at one end there is a small semi-circular notch molded into the black plastic. This can been seen in the photograph, the socket at the top of the photograph shows the notch end.

Notches on Board

Look at the board and note the ‘notch’ symbol at one end of the IC position. I have pointed to it in the photograph. When you solder the socket, all you need to do is make sure that the notch on the board lines up with notch on the IC socket.

22pF and 10nF

Now we are going to add all the capacitors starting with those that are brown in colour. Again pay attention here as all six look the same, on closer inspection you will see that four of them are marked with the number 22 and have a flash of black paint on them. (22pF capacitors). The other two are marked with the number 103 and do not have a black flash on them. (10nF capacitors).

Four 22pF

Lets start with the four 22pF capacitors (ones with the black flash). I have photographed them in close up so you are sure to get them in the correct place. Two go in the top left of the board…….


The other two fit here.

Four 22pF


……. and the other two are situated on the right hand side of the board.

Three 10uF’s

We need to solder in three 10uF’s capacitors. The first one goes next to the IC socket that runs horizontally across the board on the left-hand side, as shown in the photo.

Tip: Make sure the long leg of the capacitor goes into the hole with the plus mark on the board.




The next two components that need to be soldered to the board are the crystals. Again they look the similar but have different frequency values. One is 25MHz crystal marked 25.00SCA and the other is a16MHz crystal marked 16.00SCA


Both the 25.00SCA and the 16.00SCA crystal should not be inserted so that they are flush with the top of the IC sockets. This raises them slightly off the surface of the board.

16.000SCA Crystal

The position of 16.00SCA is shown in the photograph

100nF capacitors

Now let’s add the seven 100nF capacitors, these are blue and marked 104. Note: There is a spare location for a 100nF capacitor next to pin 1 of the ATmega328 IC. Do not fit any component in this location – just the seven in the picture. Two go on the side of the board where the 25.00SCA crystal is situated and……….

100nF (cont)

…..the other five 100nF capacitors go are situated on the right-hand side of the board.

Board So Far

So here is the board so far – at this point we are more than half way through the build.

Six and Eight SIL Sockets

Now we need to solder in the SIL sockets or “shield” connectors. These are the flat black components, two of them have 6 ‘legs’ and the other two have 8 ‘legs’. They are referred to as 6 way and 8 way SIL sockets. In this picture you will see the 6 sil sockets in place.

Attention: Make sure you solder them to the inner line of holes, not the outer ones. Make sure they are fitted straight and vertical. Best to tack one end pin with solder whilst you hold them straight – check the alignment and then solder the remaining pins in place.

Six and Eight SIL Sockets (cont)

Then solder in the eight SILL sockets in.

Header for Programme Lead

Now we are going to fit the component that will allow you to plug in the programme lead so you can get information from your computer onto the chip on the Nanode. This is called also referred to as an FTDI header and is positioned to the right-hand side of the pcb. As with all your components, make sure it is straight and level.


Underneath the 6 way right-angled header towards the bottom of the board is where we are going to solder the reset switch.

5V Regulator

Next is the 5V regulator, make sure you attached it the right way round with the thick black plastic bit facing into the board. The legs on this component are quite tough to cut into so use good side cutters once you have soldered in into place.

Screw Terminal

Solder this to board, again make sure the screw terminal the right way round with the holes for the wires facing out away from the board.


Fit the 1N4001 protection diode to the position on the board as shown. Note that there is a thick white line on the legend…..

Attention is needed again as there is a thick white band at one end of the diode and this needs to be lined up with the band on the pcb.

3v3 Regulator

You will see the component has three legs and you are going to pull middle leg out slightly backwards, so it looks a little like a stool.

3v3 Regulator

Now – the tricky part because we messed up and have marked it incorrectly on the pcb. The 3V3 regulator needs to be fitted in a certain way – so follow the photograph exactly.


We have not quite finished assembling the board yet, but now is a very good time to test it for the correct voltages. That way if you have made a mistake it will show up now and you can re-trace your steps and hopefully correct it.

You will now need to use your multi-meter and your programming cable, which you plug into a usb port on your computer.

We are going to do two tests. We are testing to see if the 5V and 3V3 power supply rails are working OK. We do this before we insert any of the ICs because if we don’t and we have made a mistake, we run the risk of frying the IC’s and as they are more than 60% of the kit value its worth doing this test.

How to Test

Plug the programming lead into your computer with the other end attached to the 6 Way Right-Angled Header as shown in the photograph. (If you are using an FTDI cable, the black wire closest to the centre of the pcb.) Then take your multi-meter and put it on DC Volt setting and select 20v on the dial.

Put the positive (red) probe on pin 14 of the 14 way IC socket and the negative probe on pin 7 of the same socket.

Test (cont)

Look at the multi-meter for a voltage close to 5.00V. Your reading should be between 4.85 and 5.15 volts. If it is lower than 4.85 this suggests that there might be a short circuit somewhere on the board and you will need to check over your soldering carefully.

Test (cont)

Now for the next test. We are now going to measure the 3V3 supply. To do this, keep the black meter lead on pin 7 of the 14 pin socket but now move the red meter probe onto pin 28 of the far 28 pin socket – refer to photograph. We are now looking for a voltage close to 3.3V- between 3.2 and 3.4 is normal. Again if it is less than 3.2 you probably have a short circuit and will need to check over your soldering carefully.

Mag-jack Connector, USB, and LED<