I've built a small voltage regulator that I can use with my breadboard or to test circuits. It is the first circuit that I've actually soldered together, so please disregard the hack job. The problem with the circuit is that when I hook up a very small load to the supply, the voltage plummets. A few things I did wrong keeping track of wires and component terminals. I replaced two capacitors that I managed to overload and they swelled up like a frozen soda can. The LM317, I had the ports all mixed up. Instead of looking at the data sheet for the unit, I was referencing the circuit schematic. I had the Vin passing through the Adj pin, the Vout passing from the Vin pin, and the Adj lead (10K pot) hooked up to the Vin. I have to say, I've learned more from this little DIY than about any class I've taken. When I connect the supply, the voltage readout is fine (about 2V less than the input); however, when a small fan is hooked up, the output drops to ~2 Volts. Could it be the voltage regulator that is no good, my soldering joints (which doesn't really make sense, since the output is fine without a load), or the way I have the circuit connected.