Patch shield - Parts list

when you open the bag and spread out the parts, you should find:

One (1) printed circuit board

The PCB is actually five boards in one. The shield itself is the rectangle to the lower right, the tabs to the top and left are the satellite boards. The ones along the top face right and left when you assemble them, and the ones along the left side make inline connections.

Two (2) 1x6 8.5mm/10.5mm female headers

Aka: the short stacky headers.

These plug into the Arduino's power and analog ports.

Two (2) 1x8 8.5mm/10.5mm female headers

Aka: the long stacky headers.

These plug into the Arduino's digital I/O ports.

Eight (8) 2x4 8.5mm female headers

Aka: the patch headers.

These are where you make the connections between Arduino ports and the 8P8C jacks. The shield uses two of these per jack.

Eight (8) 8P8C jacks

Aka: ethernet jacks.

'8P8C' stands for '8 position 8 conductor', which pretty well sums up how they're made.

These are sometimes called 'RJ45 jacks', but that's technically incorrect. A true RJ45 jack is an 8P2C connector.. only two of the pins connect to wires in the cable. Four of the positions are unused, and the other two have a resistor wired between them. The two kinds of jack look almost identical, and RJ45s were around first, hence the naming confusion.

Four of these go into the shield. The other four go into the satellite boards.

Eight (8) 1x4 male headers

These go into the satellite boards, two per 8P8C jack.

Two (2) 1x6 male headers

These are for the minimal build configuration.

If you want to build a shield with a specific patch hardwired in, and have no need to make any additional connections to the Arduino's ports, you can use these in place of the short stacky headers.

Two (2) 1x8 male headers

Again, these are for the minimal hardwire configuration. They replace the long stacky headers.

Four (4) 8-pin chip sockets

These aren't part of the kit per se. They're for off-breadboard prototyping.

The satellite boards have the same pin spacing as an 8-pin IC.. they're designed to fit across the center of a breadboard, which in turn is designed to hold a chip.

That means the satellite boards aren't restricted to breadboards. They'll fit anywhere a chip can go. The sockets give you a way to connect your Arduino to a circuit on protoboard.