I am completely new to electronics and just picked up a breadboard. I have a 12 volt power supply with a 2.5mm plug that I want to connect to the breadboard. I went to Radioshack and found the salesperson was completely useless. With power supply in hand, I asked him what I would need to connect it to a breadboard and he said "what are you going to use as a power supply?"
I'm assuming that I need a 2.5mm power jack but, I'm not sure how they work or if there is a certain type that I would need. The breadboard does have 3 binding posts if that helps. Can someone please help me here?
Well there are many ways! If you want the fast method, just cut off the output plug and connect the wires to the required binding posts. I assume you can check polarity with a VOM ? Perhaps a better way would be to mount a DC socket (that suits the output plug) into the breadboard and connect it to the posts underneath the breadboard (Once again check polarity). You will have to find somewhere or someone with practical experience for buying parts.
Lots of luck with your learning, you will get help here if you make an effort yourself.
Hi, Webb. You've got a good start here. I've got to assume you've also got some kind of voltmeter, too. You can get a digital multimeter (DMM) for less than $12 just about anywhere. I'm also assuming you've got access to some 24AWG or 22AWG solid conductor wire, and a wire stripper. (Hint: look around for some older 4-conductor phone wire -- it's got 24AWG solid, and is great for breadboards).
Now the binding posts on the top of the breadboard can accept banana jacks, but you can also unscrew them to reveal a couple of holes in the metal center of the post. With the 12V supply unpowered, curt off the plug at the end, and strip off about an inch of insulation. Then cut a couple of lengths of the 24AWG solid wire, and strip off an inch or so of insulation on each end.
Now, for both conductors from the wall wart, twist together the stranded wite and one of the solid wires. Insert the two wires into the binding post, and screw the binding post down on the two wires. You've now made a connection between the power supply and the jumper wires.
Briefly plug in the wall wart, and see that the red binding post has the + end and the black the - end. Unplug the wall wart. If your polarity is reversed, turn 'em around.
Now you can finish. Route the + wire to the top row of the protoboard, strip off 1/2" of wire, and insert the wire into any of the holes in the top row (the horizontal row of holes in the top rows are connected together). Do the same for the - wire and the bottom row of holes.
Now you've got + on the top horizontal row, and - on the bottom horizontal row. This should be sufficient for you to get started.
The reason you've got three posts is if you wanted a split supply (say,
+/-12V). Typically, the topmost row is +, the bottom-most row is -, and the two other horizontal rows are common. This is the easiest and most common way to hook up a protoboard with split supplies.
Here's a good educational link showing some protoboard basics:
I agree that the simplest way is to cut 2.5mm the end off of the wire. Take a meter and determine which is the positive wire and which is the ground wire. When your volt meter reads 12V, the wire tied to your black lead (the common) will be ground; the wire tied to your red lead will be the positive. Now tie the ground wire to the black binding post and the positive wire to the red binding post. If you have a 12V supply, then you probably have limited current, maybe 300mA, so it is relatively safe. You can fry components, but you are not likely to fry yourself.
FYI, Radio Shack used to be a place to go for electonics advice. Not anymore.
surplus solid cat5 wire is good too, and plentiful in commercial consstruction-site dumpsters once the network guy has started "terminating", but the best stuff is the wiring on the ancient phone exchanges as it's tinned (plated) so it doesn't tarnish as quickly... and comes in lots of different colours.
He might mean the grease that they use to pull long runs through conduit.
But if you can put up with greasy hands for a little bit, if you find its ripcord, you can pull that, and strip the jacket off the whole bundle in one swell foop. ;-) (leaving the jacket and the rest of the grease there, of course. :-) )
Sounds like you and I are in the same dilemma! I went to Radio Shack and they thought I was going to use my shamefully limited knowledge of electronix for evil!! The clerk laughed at my expense when I asked him about powering my Archer Universal Breadboard with a 1.5 Volt to 12 Volt @ 800mA AC to DC power supply. He said to cut off the wires and hook them to the black and red leads. Yeah, right! I'm not ready to die yet. Take the soldering route. Do you solder? Oh, it's lots of fun. I soldered some rockin' Seymour Duncan pick-ups into my Fender Bass guitar. Heat the work, not the solder... Use a 2.5 mm jack for your 12 volt AC adapter. Solder wires to it, one red wire for positive, one black wire for ground (common). Then hook those wires to your breadboard's leads. No cutting wires or electrocution. Yeah, it takes a little longer, but it's so mucher safer and professional. Electronics is an art. The nicer your circuits and connections look, the better. It sound like you will be breadboarding analog electronics. Use a power bus -- the horizontal strips at the top of your breadboard -- to connect them to your voltage supply. It saves time, wires, and cuts out a lot of agony. Thanks for asking a great question. Stay with electronics and you will be very happy in the long-run!! Good luck to you.