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Start Electronics Now! – Pages

Start Electronics Now! Part 2:
Beginner's Tools

Created on: 27 July 2012

These are the basic tools needed to start building breadboard circuits:

  1. Electronic Breadboard – for building circuits on
  2. Side-cutters – for cutting wire and stripping insulation from wire. Also used for cutting component leads
  3. Half-round-nose Pliers – for straightening component leads
  4. Soldering Iron – may not be needed right away


There are some very small breadboards available which can be used with the beginners tutorials on this website, but I would rather recommend getting a bigger one (as shown below) which can be used for larger circuits in the future. Some breadboards are available with a box of wire links used to make connections between components as shown here:

Electronic breadboard and wire links

Breadboard and Box of Wire Links

Hand Tools

The side-cutters and half-round-nose pliers need to be the small type intended for electronic use. Do not get the bigger tools intended for use by electricians. The photo below shows the difference in size of electronics tools (left) and electricians tools (right).

A comparison of electronic tools and electrician tools

Side Cutters and Half-round-nose Pliers: Left - Electronic Tools and Right - Electrican Tools

Soldering Iron

A soldering iron and stand or soldering station may also be needed by beginners. Although you will be building circuits on breadboard initially, with no soldering needed, some components will need to have wires soldered to them so that they can be plugged into the breadboard. This is only necessary from tutorial 12 in this series of beginner's tutorials.

If you want to get a soldering iron when you are ordering other tools and components, then first read the article on soldering irons and then the article on soldering.

The next part of this article shows what electronic components you will need.

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