About the manufacturing of PCBs (Printed Circuit Boards).

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3
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1answer
156 views

PCB design: the setting of the test point and the use of variable resistor

I am designing a PCB circuit and meeting two problems: My design includes a two-stage MFB band pass filter. To make sure the center frequency of the filters is the same, I need to add a variable ...
0
votes
2answers
62 views

Which layer of PCB is used to identify cut-out of individual boards within a panel?

Let's say I'm using a software like EagleCAD to create a panel with a few copies of a design (or even different designs). There is a "Dimension" layer (mapped to an Outline layer, e.g., GKO), but ...
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2answers
175 views

Is quality China manufacturing possible without being there? [closed]

I'm looking for some help with manufacturing in China with respect to PCB fabrication and assembly, plastic injection molding and metal forging/brushing. Common wisdom in our days is that one HAS to ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

How many of these UV lamps do I need for PCB fab?

I want to build a PCB UV exposure unit. It will be in a wooden box, it will have lamps and a glass above them. Basic design. For the lamp drivers I will use the circuit from the neon lamps at home. ...
3
votes
1answer
98 views

How to choose PCB manufacturing technology/factory?

I have sent some PCB designs to factories for prototyping. The price, however, varies greatly. Some ask 200USD for a four-layer 5cm*10cm PCB prototyping. While some only ask for 50USD. I assume that ...
6
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4answers
1k views

Are acid traps real? (2014)

Some people online say that acute angles in trace routing will cause these problems: "Acid Trap" - PCB etchant gets stuck in the corner, and eats away too much, causing open circuit "Peelable" - ...
0
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1answer
46 views

adding limiter to reduce distortion in audio amp

I got this schematic from adafruit. But at high volumes, it exhibits distortion. A guy from Maxim Integrated referred to include a diode-resistor network(BAV99 and R-100 Ohm) b/w C22/C23 and R8/R9(to ...
7
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3answers
148 views

What rules and tips make automated assembly easy?

What rules and tips make automated assembly easy, rather than unnecessarily difficult or completely impossible? In particular, if I have a circuit board that works fine after hand assembly, some ...
5
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3answers
500 views

PCB fabrication vs PCB assembly

What is the difference between PCB fabrication and assembly? Some companies like Golden Phoenix list that based on the size of PCB, it outputs a quote. Mine was 2.1 x 1.6 inch. It outputted 29 pieces ...
21
votes
6answers
981 views

Is it better to route a pad to a trace, or a trace through a pad?

When routing a PCB, is it better to route a trace through a pad as in 1 below, or to route a pad to a trace as shown in ...
2
votes
3answers
354 views

What is a suitable temperature rise for PCB traces?

I'm designing a PCB for a 10A relay and am trying to determine what the trace width should be. According to this trace width calculator, the biggest factors in the width are copper thickness, ...
3
votes
3answers
149 views

How much clearance should you include in through-hole component holes? [duplicate]

Is there a general rule as to how much clearance you should add to through-hole components' holes to allow them to fit easily? For example, if I have a component with 1mm pin diameter, what should ...
1
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1answer
73 views

SMD component clearance limitations and guidelines?

I'm laying out a fairly compact PCB (first SMD design of this degree) and am concerned about how close some of my SMD components are getting. I've been unable to find any guidelines or advice online ...
4
votes
3answers
608 views

How to make final good looking prototype of our project?

The handmade projects we make contain a lot of loose wiring and are actually bad looking products. So what should I do to make my product look better and that we can actually sell directly to people? ...
9
votes
4answers
814 views

Why do PCBs always have an even number of layers?

Looking at many online PCB fabs, when spec'ing out a board and uploading your gerbers, often you select how many Layers your board should have. Invariably, the options are always multiples of two. ...
1
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1answer
81 views

Correcting printed PCB (add a via)

This board is a prototype for the project and is for testing. It is missing the soldermask and silkscreen layers, so correcting mistakes is very possible. The board was printed correctly, but somehow ...
0
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1answer
99 views

FR4 measurement tolerances

I am going to get a PCB produced, but was wondering how the FR4 thickness measurements work, i.e. how thick are 1.6 and 0.8 FR4, in millimeters, to a few decimal places?
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vote
1answer
124 views

How can I quickly build PCB prototypes? [duplicate]

The development cycle of the company I work include building alfa prototypes, sometimes in breadboards, and beta prototypes in printed circuit board assembly. A considerable slice of the development ...
3
votes
1answer
171 views

What are the steps for a beginner to electronics to get custom PCBs made for a simple adapter?

I need to make an adapter between two 14-pin board-to-board connectors, one being a MicroMatch and the other being a JMC. What is the most straightforward way to get a PCB designed and ordered so ...
0
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1answer
128 views

gold finger plating needed on prototype board edge connector?

I am making a PCIe card and will be ordering prototypes. I know that in my production cards I should order hard gold plating on the edge connector. Can I skip this plating on my prototype cards to ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Altium Designer: How do I scale the output gerber file generated by Smart PDF into 1:1 ratio?

I'm trying to export a PCB layout PDF from Altium Designer 13.2.5. When my PCB design is open, I click Menu > File > Smart PDF... to open the PDF generation wizard. Throughout the wizard, I do the ...
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0answers
194 views

KiCad: Component outline on the soldering pad - will it disturb the soldering process?

Lots of KiCad's SMD components (including capacitors and resistors) print the component outlines over the solder pad. The pictures are shown below, please notice C25-27, R5-6 and D2-3 PCB design ...
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2answers
124 views

PCB - Why to use Iron chloride?

Soon, I'll try to create my own PCB with the iron chloride method. I watched a video on that and it seems quite "easy". The only thing that I don't understand is the need to put the PCB on the iron ...
2
votes
1answer
544 views

How to add Mouse Bites or V-Groove to PCB In Altium?

I know mouse bites are more used to snap off one of many of the same boards in a panelized array, but I'm hoping to put mouse bites to snap off part of the same board if that's possible. Is there ...
2
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3answers
141 views

Preventing corrosion of copper PCB tracks

I do DIY PCB with the following steps: ...
3
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1answer
108 views

Defining a flex bus in Eagle

How does one go about creating a board file for a board with both "normal" PCB material, and flex materal? I have a project where I want the PCB and a flex bus to be seamlessly joined, like: ...
25
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4answers
3k views

What is Copper Thieving and why use it?

On many boards I've seen, there are little copper dots used for the purpose of "Copper Thieving". They're small round copper dots connected to nothing and arranged in an array. Supposedly they're for ...
3
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2answers
130 views

Will MG Chemicals Positive Developer 418 Develop pre-sensitized circuit boards?

I'm trying to find a cheaper alternative to the Datak stuff ($18 for 4oz!), and I came across this (MG Chemicals 418). I'm wondering if it will work with the pre-sensitized Datak boards I'm using (ex ...
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0answers
59 views

.PCB view from protel 1.5

I have some .PCB files created through protel 1.5 and advanced pcb when I had win98. How could I see or convert my files now on Win8. Any suggestion?
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1answer
109 views

plated through hole file?

I'm designing a new product and my manufacturer can't continue with out a "plated through hole file". They say that I didn't put it in the gerber files. How do I generate this in ultiboard? Or any ...
4
votes
3answers
257 views

Is a 1.0 mm thickness for a 4-layer PCB recommended or even common?

I just learned from the websites of a couple of board manufacturers that they can go as low as 0.8mm on a 4-layer board. I think going to 1.0 mm (instead of my standard use of 1.6 mm) would be ...
1
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1answer
61 views

how to understand a positiveresist PCB developed enough

I have a positiveresist PCB that I exposed the board to UV to transfer a layout for 5 min. I use UV box that I bought from Mega UK. After that I put the board onto positive developer. As I did not ...
2
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0answers
84 views

How long does developer solution last within its bottle

Originally I was going to just use UV exposure method but the boards tend to be expensive. Now that I've invested in a laser printer I can do toner transfer which I find much much easier/ more ...
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1answer
71 views

layout transfer to epoxy resin via UV light

I have an epoxy resin PCB board, inkjet transparent film, photo resist developer (Natriumhydroxid), and UV box. I printed the circuit layout onto the transparent film and cleaned the PCB's surface. ...
0
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1answer
110 views

how to print a PCB layout for UV etching

I am new to UV etching. I have a 2 layer PCB layout that I prepared on Eagle Cad. I am confused what layer do I need to mirror? After printing the layout what side of the paper turns to the UV light ...
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0answers
99 views

Solder stop mask and tinning sequence

Is it recommended to tin PCBs before applying solder stop mask or should I apply the solder stop mask to the PCB and then apply the tinning? Would tinning before applying the solder stop mask be ...
2
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2answers
796 views

Non Plated Through Holes in Eagle

I am thinking about a project that has need for various different complicated wiring connections. I would like to make a single board that would make it as easy as possible to make arbitrary ...
0
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1answer
59 views

Double sided board w/ d2paks, solder paste?

Can you use paste on a double-sided board w/ d2paks on both sides? There is a small area below the tab but it seems like not really enough room for paste. If not, then how the heck do you do a double ...
4
votes
2answers
234 views

How to specify castellations in gerber files

I am making gerbers where I want one edge of the PCB to have castellations ( plated half-holes) on the edge. What is the safest way to specify castellations in the gerbers that will ensure that: ...
2
votes
2answers
456 views

Drill files from Kicad for PTH and NPTH

I have a board in Kicad that uses a mixture of plated and non-plated through holes. It generates two drill files for these. However, manufacturers seem to expect only a single file. If they don't ...
9
votes
1answer
300 views

Using a via to strengthen surface mount connector on or near pad

I am trying to design a board that has a surface mount connector. I was shown a picture of an example board that has vias on the pads of the connector. I don't believe the via is for connecting to a ...
8
votes
4answers
410 views

An easy method to align a two layer PCB

When I prepare a double layer DIY PCB using Press-n-Peel I have a problem aligning the bottom and top layer so that the holes and vias match on the copper between layers. Can you suggest any easy ...
1
vote
1answer
128 views

PCB layout toner transfer - ink printer

I use iron to transfer toner to the copper board, and have been using laser printer. I saw some discussion on the net that it is also possible to use use ink printer if the ink is a good quality. I ...
2
votes
1answer
86 views

Determining the best UV exposure time

I would like to manufacture DIY PCB. I am planning to make a UV box like on this link, then I wonder how I can determine the best UV exposure time? or if I use the Sun as the UV source, how I can ...
1
vote
1answer
177 views

am I on the right path to fabricating a pcb for my robot

So I'm a software engineer with the dream of wanting to build some cool robots and understand electronics as a result. I'm currently hacking with a raspberry-pi and arduino, but mostly I'm trying to ...
0
votes
1answer
208 views

How to use HDL designs in hobby circuits and how to do transistor level tuning [closed]

Please excuse the noobness. What is the process a lone (or few) individual can send an HDL design off to a fab (tools, file formats, potential fabs)? I have played around with FPGAs but I'm curious ...
1
vote
2answers
377 views

PCB boards: Epoxy resin vs Epoxy glass

I see these PCB material types often: FR4 epoxy resin, FR4 epoxy glass. I see epoxy resin is cheaper than epoxy glass (at least the price that I see from couple suppliers). I wonder if there is a ...
5
votes
3answers
702 views

PCB drilling - drill bit material selection

I am planning to buy a bench drill (something like that one) to make small hole, 0.5-1.0 mm. I recently used a Bosh drill and 1mm steel drill bit to make a hole on a FP4 fiberglass board, but the ...
5
votes
2answers
200 views

a good way to detect disconnections on the PCB traces

I make home-made cheap PCBs (I use toner transfer, then acid etching method now, but I might use UV etching someday). I wonder what is the best (and cheap) way to control if there is no problem on ...
6
votes
2answers
216 views

How to route signals across to a breakoff tab?

I have a small circuit board that will be paneled with a breakoff tab that allows for easy handling during assembly. Currently we just V-Score the square breakoff tab, but we're trying to find a way ...