Feather BlueFruit Stacking DC Motor wing and Music Maker wing


I am trying to stack on top of the Adafruit Feather 32u4 Bluefruit LE:
DC Motor + Stepper FeatherWing + Music Maker FeatherWing w/ Amp

From what I understand this 2nd row of pins on the motor wing should be identical to the outside row, so that is how i am stacking the ‘music maker’

Hopefully the pictures I have attached show what I am trying to do.

When the 2nd board is stacked, the yellow light (batt charging light) on the main feather goes solid yellow. Once the connection is made i get a slight crackle out of the speaker.

The example file for the Music maker doesnt detect the sound chip
Using a 2nd piece of code to scan for I2C addresses doesnt detect the music maker.

Am I right in thinking these are stackable? Is it correct that the yellow charging light should come on when the ‘music maker’ is connected?


Whether they are stackable depends on the pins used by each feather. Two or more using i2c is fine, as long as no two devices have the same i2c address. Any other pin if trying to be used by two feathers at the same time isn’t going to work out very well.
I’m thinking you more than likely have a soldering issue. You also want to make sure one board isn’t touching another board, component wise.
Female headers to plug one board into the next would have been the way I would have gone. Just a for next time comment.
Or something like this

Thanks for the response, I will double check the soldering and try again. I may also force the I2C address to change on the Motor board and see if that helps.
I have to keep the height as low as possible due to space constraints, but I guess testing it all first using female headers would have been the sensible option! Thanks 😊

There are “short” feather headers.

I can’t see why they would clash with each other, the Motor hat just seems to be I2C while the music maker seems to mostly be SPI. However, I’m not sure why the charge LED on yours is lighting up, did you have a LiPo connected at the time?

I’d take a wild guess not detecting the Music Maker wing is a soldering issue, it’s hard to see the SPI pins in your photo because they’re on the other side of the board but the SCK pin looks like it doesn’t have a lot of solder on it. Take a look at the Adafruit guide to soldering to see what you should be getting. Is the music board actually soldered onto the motor board? It’s hard to see.

In my experience the short headers don’t reduce the height much unless you trim down the male pins as well, but you probably don’t want to lower the board any lower than the LiPo connector on the Feather 32u4 anyway.

I was wondering if the short headers saved much space. There are matching male headers, that’s not going to help much if you already have the stock ones installed.
I had plans to buy some feather stuff a while back but it just never happened. I had plans to go with the side by side board I linked too above, but soldered on to reduce height. I wanted clear access to the top of the boards. One was a display and another had environmental sensors on it. I didn’t want to have to stack them at all.

So they drop it a few millimeters, but the biggest thing preventing thin stacks is the height of the LiPo connector on the board. One thing you could probably do is solder male headers onto the board, use pliers to remove the black plastic part of the header and then insert it into the side-by-side board and solder that.

Having that one black part between them wouldn’t be that big a deal for me. I just want them side by each instead of stacked.
If you put the black bit on top, long pin end going through the top of the feather and out the back. You could then just solder the back side where there is just bare pins.
Then plug that into whatever and solder it. Assuming the black bit and short pins on top aren’t an issue. Those black bits aren’t as easy to remove as you might think.

Long process but i have now unsoldered everything and I am testing just stacking the ‘music maker’ on top of the feather board.
I still get the lipo charging LED come on even though i dont have a li-po connected.
Is this common? Should the music maker itself light up at all?

Hi, quick update for you, it was the speaker causing the issue! very strange to be causing the Li-po light to come on but as soon as i pulled off the speaker suddenly the IDE could see the board.
thanks for the suggestions, got there in the end