New Toy – Theremin

I have a new toy. Some time ago, a friend bought a Theremin online. When it arrived, he was dismayed to realise he’d bought not a fully functional instrument but a kit. I’m the sort of geek with a soldering iron and weakness for musical oddities, so having discovered the thing languishing in his attic, he passed it on.

Hurrah! I love a project.

The first step was to inventory the kit and check the components. I’d mostly forgotten resistor colour codes but it came back to me. The capacitors (three kinds) were easier because all the values are printed on them. Some components were harder to ID, but once I’d managed the obvious ones it was simply a case of matching the leftovers to the component descriptors.

So, I have the bits, I have the solder, I have a couple of hours. How hard could it be?

As it turns out, it’s quite tough. The first job was to identify, locate and solder in the resistors. The capacitors and IC sockets followed, then the semiconductors and sundry bits and pieces.

More bits in place.

The case had pre-cut holes and slots for the antennae and external connections. I have adapted the design to remove the external power connector and replace it with a PP connector (to take a square battery) so the device is completely portable.

Now all I must do is tune it (yes, it needs tuning, apparently) and start recording!


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