I'm intending to solder several protoboards in a few weeks when I get all my materials.

I was wondering what is the best way to keep the rectangular angles (so it looks similar to the picture below, see for example the black arrow pointing to the red wire).

I don't need all the angles but some angles to keep the shape a bit tidy would be nice.

Is glueing the wire onto the protoboard acceptable? Soldering will not work, since it will melt the (colored) unsulation. I'm using 22 and/or 24 AWG wire.


  • I do not want to use an 'ordered' PCB because I will need only one, and there is a low possibility I might need to change something.
  • Also I'm using the prototype on (music) stages, while functioning it will be steady, but it will be moved/bumped regularly during transport.
  • The jumper-symbols (straight wires) are only used for convenience for drawing, I will not use jumpers but stranded 22/24AWG wire.

enter image description here

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Have you considered "sewing" the board with the wire? Simply go through the board at the corners. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 18, 2018 at 0:08
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Sewing is not a bad idea. I think by isolation you mean insulation on the wires. Many of the connections you've shown appear to be mechanically secure. Hot glue is a common old fashioned solution to mechanically secure things to boards. Take care not to thermally insulate anything that must dissipate heat. You can also secure entire boards in potting compound if you wish for cases of extreme vibration or to aid thermal dissipation or insulation. \$\endgroup\$
    – K H
    Sep 18, 2018 at 0:58
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ I won't post a complete answer since I'm only adding up: you can use a small screwdriver or something that fits through the hole near your 90 degree angle. That way you can wrap your wire around that pole solder the connection in place and then remove the temporary pole. If you need several corner, simply put several pole on your way. It will be a bit faster than sewing and you will get a similar result. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 18, 2018 at 3:53
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I wouldn't suggest bending wire at such a sharp 90 degree angle, because there is risk of breaking the conductor. Could you cut up the wire into multiple smaller wires and use the bread board to solder them together? \$\endgroup\$ Sep 18, 2018 at 13:34
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @MichelKeijzers Then you can safely use your screwdrive to bend it around without risking soldering it in place. The solder connection will be far away from the corner. You can even bend first, stick the wire to fixate it, remove the screwdriver and then solder. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 18, 2018 at 15:19

2 Answers 2


This is not typically done. Prototyping is a very practical, and often isn't pretty. Wires everywhere, cats and dogs living together, etc.

Ideally, with these boards, you just throw as much solder as you can and bridge from one point to another. Your layout would need some work, and the occasional small jumper instead of using wires everywhere.

But you can do exactly what you suggested. Superglue or hot glue are fine. You can use tape (kapton tape is used for this on some commercial products and reworks). Sewing as Harry put it in the comments, can be done to keep the wires on the other side of the board where they won't be seen. That's sometimes done as a cheap strain relief for wires, but the holes must be big enough for your wire or you will need to drill them out a bit.

Keep in mind, solid core wire will be weakened by sharp 90 degree bends. Stranded is slightly better, but the more you flex and bend either, the sooner it work hardens the metal and makes it fragile.

Your beginner designs will tend not to have things where these right angles are a problem. Right angles in high speed circuits can result in refraction and signal issues. Gluing down high current wires can cause thermal issues depending on where and how it's done.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ the reason I 'draw' jumpers is that it is the easiest way to draw straight lines, I will not use any jumpers at all. I ordered some kaptan tape, but also have superglue or use sewing. Good to know about high speed circuits, so I will make sure the bands are not too straight. I will use some 220V (but max few 100 mA) wires, but those are thicker and do not need to be glued since they are in the bottom under the lowest proto board. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 18, 2018 at 8:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ As someone who is extremely socially awkward, how did my comment appear "humourly"? \$\endgroup\$ Sep 18, 2018 at 13:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Harry I've never heard of sewing wires onto a pcb, it just popped up an image of a pcb under a sewing machine. I'll rephrase, nothing negative meant at all. \$\endgroup\$
    – Passerby
    Sep 18, 2018 at 14:03

I think point to point soldering is a pain especially if the design might need some tweaking or component values changed. Parts in wire wrap sockets and then wiring with 30 AWG wirewrap wire that wrapped onto the legs of the sockets, no soldering at all, is my preferred method.

Here's a great page with pictures using "island of holes" board. http://www.gammon.com.au/forum/?id=11109

enter image description here

Parts, wire, and wirewrap tool are available here, I use the gold wrapping tool. http://www.phoenixent.com/ (changing to peconnectors.com)

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Interesting, although I think I prefer using a breadboard for unfinished/changable 'projects'... However, in my case I want it to be resistant against 'movement', I'm not sure if this will work, but it could work for more stationary projects. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 18, 2018 at 15:50
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ This is great for projects that are still in the design/debug stage, but require moving around. Way more stable than breadboard, but still very easy to change. Put down a few extra sockets for adding parts if you're going to work on it away from home. If you scroll down to my Fencing Scoring Machine here crossroadsfencing.com/BobuinoRev17 you can see I built the whole thing up using green island of holes boards, Velleman ECS1/2, jameco.com/Jameco/Products/ProdImag/2193598.jpg \$\endgroup\$
    – CrossRoads
    Sep 18, 2018 at 15:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ I will use the current project away from home, but changing I can do at home, but I can use it for 'temporary' projects (like projects where I want to test something, or try for some time before making a final enclosure with soldered items). \$\endgroup\$ Sep 18, 2018 at 15:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ To the OP, wire wrap applied with a wire wrap tool is very reliable. More reliable than soldering done by an unskilled person. \$\endgroup\$
    – user57037
    Sep 18, 2018 at 16:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ One drawback of wire-wrapping and the reason I gave it up many years ago: When wire-wrapping is done for prototyping of a design in progress, changes to the circuit are pretty much a given. With multiple wires on a post, to remove a wire you usually need to unwrap the wires above it. These wires cannot simply be re-wrapped as that causes frequent breakage, therefore these wires need to be replaced and the same problem can compound on the other end of those wires. I don't like adding extra length to wires either as that can sometimes affect the functionality. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tut
    Sep 18, 2018 at 16:21

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.