Screaming Circuits: Layout

PROTOTYPE AND SMALL VOLUME
PCB ASSEMBLY MADE EASY

Missing Mars Probes

Back in ancient times when multi-legged beasts ruled the earth, there were a lot more standards. Or maybe there were just fewer total things resulting in fewer total variations, which looks like more standards. In any case, if you got... Read more

More Thermal Examples

Speaking of thermal relief... Here's an interesting example I ran across the other day. Thermal relief can be a pain. If you've got a high current device, you may want more than just the thin little connections, one per side,... Read more

Passively annoying

Passive components can be kind of offensive sometimes. I can understand them in analog circuits or charge pumps. But the fact that we need to put them all over our digital logic is just rude. Technically, I understand why they... Read more

Electrolytic Ambiguity

I've written about ambiguity a few times before, like this post about fiducials. But I'm not talking about the PC board today. I'm talking parts. More specifically, I'm talking about silk screen markings for your parts on the PCB. Diodes... Read more

Counting once, counting twice...

Let's say you have two options: First, you could send in your PC boards for assembly as individuals. Second, you could send them in a panel. That's all fine and dandy. For a few, send individuals. For a bunch, panels... Read more

Fiddling with Fiducials again

I recently posted a note about fiducials but I didn't have any images. Here's a couple of examples: This first example shows what IPC would like to see. If this is an individual board, this would be it. If it... Read more

Is it your fiduciary duty to use fiducials?

We don't require fiducials here. It's not mandatory. That's because we live in a prototype world and in that world, theory doesn't always match up with reality. That being said, there are things we can do and things we would... Read more

Ambiguity

It's pretty important to have unambiguous polarity markings and pin one markings printed on your PCB. In theory, for SMT parts, it really shouldn't matter; the centroid would take care of the placement orientation. But, you may have noticed that... Read more

More CAD footprint woes

AT this point, I really shouldn't call them "woes." More like business as usual. I'm talking about the need to make custom footprints, or at leas modify footprints. Back in the old days, the only thing needed to make footprints... Read more

Shrouded vs. non-shrouded

A connector isn't a connector isn't a connector. In this photo, the original PC board was designed to have an unshrouded break-away header, as shown in the inset on the right. I measured it. The entire header fits within the... Read more