Sunday, 17 January 2010

Building a Display Adapter for the HD44780 LCD

Having successfully written a library for controlling the LCD screen using a shift register I thought: "How great would it be to have a small circuit board that plugs onto the back of the LCD screen so I don't have to use valuable space on my bread board?" So I made one.

Step 1:

Start with the schematic from my last post:

Step 2:

Design the circuit layout. If I was going to make a PCB this would be quite straight forward as I created the schematic in EAGLE; I would just select 'File > Switch to board', position the components and hit autoroute. However, I am going to be using vero / strip board so I have to do the layout myself. I did it on paper, but I have re-done it using DIY Layout Creator

Step 3:

Cut out the board and start soldering in the components:

Once all the components are soldered in we can start placing the jumper wires:

The last thing to do is to attach the cable we will use to attach it to the arduino. I had a good length of 5 core cable from a Nintendo Gamecube controller which is perfect for this task, I just need to attach pins to the end of it so it can plug into the arduino.

Step 4:

Testing. This at least is simple. Just plug and play. Like windows, only this might actually work!

Step 5:

All I need now is a stand for it. Thankfully I have an old library card that will suffice just nicley. So two minutes work with a craft knife, a ruler and a screw driver and we have the finished product!

I know the stand looks a bit crude, but it does the job nicely.


  1. Chris,

    I dont know if you will pick this up but I have been following your work for a few days and I am very interested in your RC Transmitter project from the old Arduino form and this work on shift registers.

    I have a background in electronics and model flying and have just come back into both after a 15 year lay off (family raising). I have an Uno and a mega mini and I am building an FPV plane based on the Bixler. I would like to build a ground station with an integrated encoder to feed the TX of the safety pilot with a view to adding an FrSky TX module at a later date. I have installed these modules in a number of old (er) Futaba FC-16 and they work well.

    I dont know if your project continued after the old Arduino forum site closed but I would be very grateful for some help.

    I used to teach programming, Pascal, COBOL and Basic so i am at home with that area but well out of date. (bit of an age giveaway).

    I am on the new Arduino Forum as AlanGP or alternatively my e-mail is I would apppreciate a PM if you have time.



  2. Testing. This at least is simple. Just plug and play. Like windows, only this might actually work! 300w ac dc switching adapter​

  3. Thanks so much for sharing this awesome info! I am looking forward to see more postsby you!
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  4. structure of display adapter id very helpful to understand
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