[time-nuts] Prototype boards. Was: Re: Divide by five
kb8tq at n1k.org
Fri Nov 7 21:39:06 EST 2014
Tools are one thing that makes it happen. Practice is another thing that we often forget about being in the mix. Start slow and simple. Work your way up. Plan on setting up a bit better bench than you have now. Don’t try to work of 20 hours straight on that first board. 1206 R’s and C’s work ok on your first board. A dozen parts is plenty to do something useful without you going insane putting it together.
> On Nov 7, 2014, at 9:27 PM, dan at irtelemetrics.com wrote:
> Hi all,
> I completely agree here. Dip parts are so 'old school'! :) You do get a much better board layout with SMT components. I do understand it can be difficult for some to solder these new SMD components. However with good magnification, a little liquid or paste flux, and some tweezers, a lot of you may be surprised how quickly you'll pick it up.
> As for the cost of the prototype boards, there is a board sharing site worth looking into. For any of us wanting to 'try something', OSHpark.com is a community circuit board order site. They have great prices, if you don't mind purple boards! Silk screen, solder mask, through hole vias, and any shape, 2 or 4 layer boards, with gold plating. They work well with Eagle, if you have it. (FYI, I have no affiliation to them, just used them a few times in the last few weeks...). The really nice thing is if you make a board and others want it you can 'share' the board. Then anyone can order it for themselves.
> For example, I did a layout of an SMT version of Warren S's HP10811 outer oven controller (Thanks again Warren!), with some extra stuff added and received three boards shipped, for a total cost of $10 (Not per board, for the whole order and shipping!). Other boards I have ordered were $1.30 and $2.80 (Synergy GPS connector boards, etc.) for sets of three shipped. (Yeah, postage should be more than 1.30!)
> Don't completely knock surface mount until you try it. SOIC size packs, and 0805 and 1206 passive components can be pretty easy to work with! Eventually you'll start to think .5mm spaced leads, 0603 and 0402 passives are too big! :)
>> The days of DIP parts are drawing to a close. Most of the DIP’s are now surplus and stocked by odd places here and here. The risk with many places (even major names) is that the part you get isn’t what you think it is. It may be a re-labeled something else pulled off a board in China with a blowtorch. I think that in a lot of ways, you are better off with something in one of the larger SMD packages than a surplus / questionable DIP. The other half of the equation at higher frequencies is good layout. That sort of forces you in the direction of a pc board. Custom boards are now so crazy cheap that doing them for a one off makes sense. Bob
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