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scrabble-dispenser-cover
Having been an avid Scrabble players for years (in my geeky youth I memorized all the two-letter words), I know how tricky it can be to replenish one’s tile rack while keeping the game fair. Troubles such as taking too many or too little letters, accidentally letting your opponent see your tiles, or outright cheating can befall a serious Scrabble player.

Taj Singh has attempted to fix this by building a beautifully designed Scrabble tile dispenser. It’s based on a PIC 16F628 microcontroller and a stepper motor. You push the button, a tile slides down the chute, and you take it to make your next play. Let’s take a closer look at how Taj did it.

This is the circuit designed by Taj.

This is the circuit designed by Taj.

Hi circuit appears to be hand-etched, and a snappy job at that.

His circuit appears to be hand-etched, and a snappy job at that.

Taj says, "Recessed grooves were cut to allow tiles to be stored for users to load the dispenser as it empties."

Taj says, “Recessed grooves were cut to allow tiles to be stored for users to load the dispenser as it empties.”

Finally, a stepper motor is programmed to push the tile out onto the slide and down to the awaiting player.

Finally, a stepper motor is programmed to push the tile out onto the slide and down to the awaiting player.

Taj has done a fine job on this project and has also gone the extra mile in providing extensive documentation. Check out these links if you want to learn more about his PIC code and components, design features, and the motor and PCB window.

Michael Colombo

In addition to being an online editor for MAKE Magazine, Michael Colombo works in fabrication, electronics, sound design, music production and performance (Yes. All that.) In the past he has also been a childrens’ educator and entertainer, and holds a Masters degree from NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program.


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Comments

  1. Eran says:

    Nice, now – how about some video!

    1. Taj Singh says:

      Hope to have a video soon. Thnx

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