DIY : Build the Secret Garden "Shield"

Shield arduino

Hi everybody !
In this tutorial, we will build the Secret Garden shield so that your Arduino board can exercise control over your garden.

Before reading the rest of this tutorial, make sure you've already got the printed board. If you don't know how to get it, proceed as follows :

To manufacture the Secret Garden printed board, the required files are available at the end of this article and here is a link to a manufacturer (but of course, you can choose anyone else):

A piece of advice : it’s better to make a group purchase because manufacturers rarely print only one card but often at least 10.

To manufacture the shield Secret Garden we will need :

Required tools :

A soldering iron

Tin (diam. 0.7)

A SMD clamp (tweezers will do)

Required equipment :

1X printed board« Secret Garden »

2X diodes 1N4148 DO-35
1X diode Zener BZX55C5V1
2X relays G5LE –1 5VDC
2X transistors NPN BC850B
2X resistors SMD 1206 16.9k 1%
6X resistors SMD 1206 10k 1%
1X resistor SMD 1206 100k 1%
1X resistor SMD 12 06 40.2k 1%
1X resistor 1K 1%
1X  trimmer 20 turns 10k
1X trimmer 20 turns 1M
1X quartz 32.768kHz http://
3X integrated circuit supports DIL 8 ways (optional but highly recommanded )
8X condensators SMD 1206 100nF
1X condensator 100nF
2X condensators 100μF 25V
1X jack BNC female
2X terminal blocks 2 ways
1X DS1307 DIL08
1X TL072P DIL08
1X pin header arduino shield
1X CR1220-SMD battery holder http://


Step 1 : weld the SMD components


We are going to start with welding the SDM components, i.e., resistors, condensators, transistors and the battery holder.

To weld the SMD components, a bit of soldering is deposited on one of the two fixation pitches of the printed circuit board, then with the help of a tweezers one of the two fastening lugs is welded at this place. Thereafter, since the component no longer moves, it's easy to weld the second (and the third if there is one) lug (see photos).

To weld the battery holder, start to weld the negative end (-) marked with « BAT » then weld the positive end, in a similar way as described above for SMD components.


Step 2 : welding the through hole components


It's done, the hardest part is past! Now you just have to weld the through hole components. For these latter, you need soldering components from the smallest to the largest. No major difficulties for the welding in itself.

Warning :

Some components are polarized the other ones are not. Here is the list of polarized components:
C10 and C11 (the longest pin is the positive and the negative pole is  printed on the component.)

D1, D2 and D3 (the black line indicates the cathode.)

D3 is a Zener diode. Do not confuse it with the two other diodes otherwise you may be in for an unpleasant surprise!
For integrated circuits (IC), use the notch to help yourself to place them properly.
For the pinout of the two external sensors connected on the shield, the number 1 printed on the card represents the +5 v (see photo bellow)



Here you are! Now you are a proud owner of a Secret Garden card. You still need to configure it. To do this go to the following address:
PS: For a perfect connection between the Arduino and the shield, I advice you to abrase the pins of all components.

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