As of last October, I’d rarely held a soldering iron.
Today, thanks to the investment I’ve made in tools and practice (and thanks to a lot of great advice from this community), I saved myself around $1500 by repairing the heater in my Toyota Highlander, which had gone on the fritz thanks to broken wires due to a loose knob. A quick Bing search found me this blog post:
which described the exact issue I was seeing, and with the helpful instructions, it was simple to pull the dash apart, disassemble the control panel, remove the old wires from the control knob PCB (solder wick was a BIG help here), and resolder the wires.
In about an hour, the heater was good as new. And without the motivation of .NET Gadgeteer to learn electronics, it would not have been possible.
So the next time someone asks you what you get out of the time you spend on NETMF and Gadgeteer, you can tell them you’re building skills that will pay for themselves over and over.
Thanks again to all of the folks in this community who’ve helped me since I arrived on your doorstep. I am in your debt.