Tommy Nielsen's Sandwizz Turns KiCad Projects Into Wire-Free Breadboard Prototypes

Just upload a netlist to the Sandwizz Breadboard and it'll tell you exactly where each component needs to go — all without jumper wires.

Gareth Halfacree
1 month agoHW101

Engineer Tommy Nielsen is looking to make your breadboard projects tidier with the Sandwizz, a jumper-free solderless breadboard that configures itself based on KiCad circuit designs, crowdfunding now.

"Sandwizz Breadboard is designed to offer the new generation of electronics enthusiasts and experienced developers the optimal tool to realize their projects faster and more efficiently," Nielsen writes of his creation. "With Sandwizz Breadboard, we aim to provide users with the ability to easily experiment and create."

The Sandwizz Breadboard aims to make physical circuit prototyping quicker and easier, by ditching the wires. (📹: Microaware)

The Sandwizz looks, from the outside, like any other solderless breadboard. In use-though, the difference becomes clear: there are no flying-lead jumper wires connecting components together. Instead, the connections are made from beneath under programmatic control — based on circuit designs created in the open-source KiCad electronic design automation (EDA) tool.

"The built-in algorithm will transform the KiCad netlist into an optimized Sandwizz netlist, substituting net labels with row numbers on the breadboard," Nielsen explains. "To facilitate connections between rows that aren't naturally linked by components, as well as to embedded components within the breadboard, silicon 'wires' are integrated into the breadboard structure."

That's not all that's hidden in the circuit beneath the breadboard, either: Sandwizz includes "a variety of analog and digital components" that can be used in circuits in place of external parts, with the placement algorithm prioritizing these — minimizing the number of parts you need to manually place into the breadboard, Nielsen claims.

The Sandwizz accepts netlists from KiCad, configuring itself accordingly — and telling you where each component should go. (📹: Microaware)

The core concept of the Sandwizz, replacing manual jumper wires with programmatic control of switching circuits, isn't new: Kevin Santo Cappuccio has seen great success with the Jumperless, a family of slick jumper-free breadboards recently proven in-the-field as part of a neat 16mm camera project. and which has received a high-speed probe mode for quick rewiring.

Neilsen, however, is hoping to stand out by expanding Sandwizz into an entire ecosystem of compatible parts — allowing multiple boards to be connected together and expanded using "Library Card" add-ons that sit beneath the Sandwizz Breadboard.

The Sandwizz Breadboard is funding on Kickstarter now, with physical rewards starting at €79 (around $86) for early-bird backers of a kit including a single Sandwizz Breadboard, transportation case, USB cable, and miscellaneous components.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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