The Ultimate Utility Meter — Part 1
Figure 5. Assemble the Dios Universal LCD Carrier as shown.
Assemble the Dios Utility Carrier according to the provided instructions. The Dios Utility Carrier comes with multiple headers. Install them as shown in Figure 6. Use a 25-
pin right angle for the main header and straight headers for
the others. Insert the 28-pin Dios chip and set the jumper
as shown in Figure 6.
At this point, we are ready to mount our carrier
boards, switches, and keypad. I like to use what I call the
sandwich enclosure technique. This is where you take two
pieces of acrylic or compressed PVC and attach them with
spacers as shown in Figure 7.
There are advantages to using clear acrylic over compressed PVC. For one, you don’t need to create a cutout for
the LCD. You can mount the LCD under the top sheet. It
also makes it very easy to mark the locations for all the
Start by creating the top panel out of a 4 x 7 x 1/8-inch
sheet as shown in Figure 8. You can purchase acrylic from
your local home center, where you might get it cut to size. All
the holes are the same for both acrylic and PVC mounting.
For PVC, you will need to make the LCD cutout, as well
as the keypad cutout. I used a scroll saw to make these.
Once the cutout is made, fit the LCD and then mark your
mounting holes. These holes are 1/8 inch in diameter. The
keypad cutout shown is only for the All Electronics keypads
called out in the Parts List. Any other keypad will require
you to mark and cut a hole for that keypad. If you don’t want
Figure 6. Use a 28-pin Dios chip for the utility carrier.
Schematic 3. A look at the three switches.
to make the keypad cutout, you may also mount the keypad
on top of the panel with a slot cut for the header.
For acrylic, things are a bit different if you want to