42 June 2014
BUILD IT YOURSELF
This easy-to-build-and-use tester will allow you to test any BASIC Stamp modules for
bad I/O pins, RAM, and other issues that may cause problems in your projects. This
tester only works on Stamps that can still communicate with a PC and cannot test
modules that are completely dead (bricked).
A Little History
BASIC Stamps are one of the most well-known
microcontrollers out there. That popularity is well
deserved, and includes vast amounts of free
documentation and example code, as well as free
technical support. Parallax takes great pride in
manufacturing these microcontrollers here in the USA,
and every Stamp made is fully tested before being sold.
This procedure is done one Stamp at a time, usually in lots
of 50, 100, or more.
Over time, Parallax has developed and improved the
testing of their modules. Originally, there were separate
programs and test boards for each Stamp model. My goal
as a tech guy at Parallax was to have one board and
source code to handle everything.
To that end, I worked with Senior Application
Engineer Jeff Martin to not only simplify the test
procedure for manufacturing, but make it better and be
able to detect more possible types of problems. While the
code was being improved, I created a test board that
could handle any Stamp module. This includes the BS1
and all 24- and 40-pin Stamp 2 models.
By Chris Savage
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BASIC STAMP MODULE