Making a RS-232/UART adaptor

May 28, 2014

A couple of months ago I wanted to experiment with the serial console of an old router I had laying around. Not wanting to buy a UART to RS-232 adaptor, I decided to make one myself. After all, I had some spare MAX3232 left over from a previous project (for which I still haven't blogged).

I just followed the schematic provided by the datasheet and 15 minutes of soldering later, this was the end result.

Top view

Bottom view

Gotta love these cute little perfboards!

I've tested it both with a RapPI and the aforementioned router and it works great. I was able to get a serial console on the router using the serial headers on the pcb. The manufacturer had even marked the TX/RX pin holes, so there was no need for me to go serial hunting.

Now, I'm waiting for some FTDI FT232-RL chips to arrive to make a USB adaptor instead of a RS-232 one. I know you can buy one on ebay for 3 bucks, but where is the fun in that?

Tags: hardware