PCB Assembly Services - Screaming Circuits: Suspect Thru-hole Packaging


Suspect Thru-hole Packaging

Surface mount components are carefully packaged up in strips, tubes, or trays, because they're machine assembled. The assembly robots need order and organization to properly do their job.

Thu-hole parts, on the other hand, are almost always manually inserted by actual human-type people. That being the case, the manufacturers and distributors are sometimes more lax with their packaging. They assume that, since a human is picking the parts, a jumble is okay. Sometimes it is, but not always.

DB-25 jumble

In the case of these thru-hole DB-25 connectors, the jumble was too much and lead to a number of bent pins. Slightly bent pins usually aren't a problem, but some of these ended up a lot more than "slightly" bent.

DB-25 bent pins

To make matters worse, these pins are small thin-wall tubes, which are more susceptible to breakage when bent than are solid wire pins. For the connector on the bottom of the image, some of the most horribly bent pins may not be straightenable without breaking. If they are, they'll certainly be weakened.

The moral of the story is that thru-hole parts need care too. We can't toss them around just because they aren't the latest technology.

Duane Benson
Spider-Pin, Spider-Pin,
Does whatever a Spider-Pin does


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