Housing for IOIO UART extension board SoarTronic

SoarTronic developed an extension board, which connects electronic varios, IGC loggers, FLARM etc. to an Android device running open source gliding software XCSoar over a IOIO board. The extension board provides 4 serial RS232 compatible data ports and an additional port for a FLARM display, power supply for the Android and with access to the rest of the IOIO pins possibilities are endless. Check www.soartronic.com and www.xcsoar.org to find out more.

Akaflieg Graz member Michael Huber developed a housing for the IOIO / SoarTronic board. This page describes how to build it. If you have access to a CNC router and want to manufacture the two blanks required yourself, you can download the drawing. This design is provided for your private (or clubs) use. All other rights are reserved, and no warranty of any kind is implied.

Both parts are made from 1.5mm thick aluminum plate. Outline contours are shown in yellow and inline contours in red. The cyan lines show where the housing is bent. Route these lines 0.7mm deep with a 2mm router bit. If you happen to have no CNC router available, you might want to order the blanks from SoarTronic together with the PCB.

Deburr and break all edges. Double check that you did not miss any sharp edge, once the sides are bent it is much harder to do. Countersink the four mounting holes from the bottom side of the blank. Make sure that the screw heads are flush or slightly recessed to avoid scratching the surface you will mount the housing to.

Bend the blanks to the shape as shown. Use a vice to clamp the parts, and make sure that the slots milled at the bend lines are on the inner side of the bend! Start the bottom part with the bend at the small front panel, continue with the two long sides and finish with the back. Once the bend is made, never bend back or the bend line will break!

Mount the 10mm long hexagon spacers with internal thread to the two forward mounting holes of the IOIO with M3 x 5 screws as shown. If your IOIO board is already soldered to the extension PCB, you might want to use a spacer with a stud as shown on the right. Shorten the stud as required, and mount it with a M3 nut.

Solder the IOIO board to the extension PCB using 5mm spacers between the PCBs.

Insert M3 x 25 screws from the bottom and apply black 10mm spacers at the aft two mounting points.

Route the required cables through the front panel. Fit 5mm spacers between the PCBs and insert the PCBs in the housing (USB connector goes in first). Mount the PCBs with two M3 nuts in the back and two M3 x 8 screws from the bottom in the front. Do not over-tighten the screws, there is no need to. If you fly a powered glider, make sure that you applied thread lock to all screws and nuts!

Double check everything and apply some protection for the wires going through the front panel. Use rubber grommets, or at least some good shrink sleeve. Finally, attach the cover with 6 self tapping screws 2.9 x 9.5mm. (Yes, the picture shows 10 screws, but 6 ought to be enough to withstand use even in a gliding club).

Now if everything looks more or less like the picture above or probably much better, its time to be proud of yourself! Do some final testing, install in your glider and enjoy!

Happy Soaring!