Kurt Skauen writes:
This is a description of how I designed and built my UV exposure box. After experimenting a bit with dry-laminate photo-resist and liquid UV hardened solder mask I decided to stop trying to improve my toner transfer technique and rather build a proper UV radiation unit for making printed circuit boards.
I wanted it to be powerful and compact so I decided to use UV LEDs as the UV source. The preferred wavelength for the LEDs would probably be 365nm, but those LEDs turned out to be hard to find, and very expensive. The 395nm-405nm LEDs on the other hand are very inexpensive. And best of all, can be bough as high-density LED-strip’s on 5-meter rolls. So I bought two “5M Ultraviolet 395nm 3528 SMD LED” rolls that have 120 LEDs per meter for a total of 600 LEDs per roll. From what I could tell from a bit of googling the wavelength should work even though it is not ideal. Initial tests proved that the 395nm LEDs worked very well.
DIY Double Sided 60W LED UV Radiation Unit With Vacuum Pump – [Link]
by alibenpuff @ instructables.com:
What do PCB production and fake fingernails have in common? They both use UV light sources of high intensity and, as luck would have it, those light sources have exactly the same wavelength. Only the ones for PCB production are usually quite costly and the ones for fake fingernails are a bit more competitively priced.
This instructable is about how to use such a device to build a low cost light source, suitable for exposing the various UV sensitive materials encountered in printed circuit board production, like dry film photoresist and UV curable soldermask.
Make a proper PCB exposer out of a cheap UV nail curing lamp – [Link]
New board is here SO8 to Dip adapter. Dimension of the board is 14.21 x 10.59mm.
SO8 to Dip Adapter – [Link]
This is a 44 pin TQFP to DIP breakout board. Ideal for ATmega32 and other chips with standard 0.8mm pin spacing 44-pin TQFP package. The Board is designed with Eagle Cadsoft software.
TQFP44 Breakout Board to Dip – [Link]
by Dave Gladwin @ edn.com:
In the last ten years, the technology for manufacturing lightweight, flexible PCBs has made huge progress. Lightweight flex circuits are usually associated with materials like Kapton. The use of those materials is typically limited to high-value applications due to price. Fast forward to 2015, and the landscape has changed dramatically.
Printed electronics makes the news on a regular basis. We hear about breakthroughs in printing semi-conductors, organic photocells, or triboelectric fabric. What often goes unnoticed is that the underlying circuits – manufactured on low-cost flexible substrates with copper traces – have quietly moved from the lab to the production floor. Printed copper flexible circuits are now routinely manufactured by the kilometre in a reel-to-reel process. As production volumes go up, costs come down.
PCB future is lightweight, low-cost, and flexible: Product how-to – [Link]
Quite by accident I came across a long time ago for the film on YouTube, which focuses on domestic production of PCBs. Personally, I am convinced that it is better to perform the PCB in a professional company – you know: aesthetics, two-sided layout, descriptions, soldermask, tin holes etc. However, for small, home projects, not specifically that I require. Let us not forget that it comes to this the cost of a few dozen gold and długaśny timeout. So I decided to make myself the right tools to perform such fototransferu tiling method, ie UV platesetters and wytrawiarki PCBs.
UV exposure and PCB Etching solution – [Link]
by USB Armory:
The USB Armory batch production is almost complete and we would like to take this opportunity to provide some details about the manufacturing process. The journey that takes the USB Armory design from schematics to the physical board is truly fascinating and involves several steps.
We decided from a very early stage to manufacture and assemble the USB Armory PCB 100% in Italy, which is where Inverse Path is based. This allows us to efficiently interact with our suppliers and ensure the quality that the USB Armory boards deserve.
The PCB manufacturing is done by TVR, a high quality “Just in Time” manufacturer founded in 1975. Their manufacturing capabilities, efficiency and process quality are remarkable, they are highly praised for the quick turnover in producing complex PCBs with an extremely low failure rate.
Manufacturing Process of USB Armory – [Link]
After my initial PCB success with Maker Studio, I uploaded the design files to three more board houses. I had planned to try four or five more, but I started to get the impression that many of the China-based sources used the same fab house, so I stopped at three.
Elecrow’s basic board fab service supplies 5 or 10 PCBs for $11.90, with a basic international shipping cost of around $7 for 5 boards. Although I haven’t been paying close attention to delivery time for these reviews (too many variables), I will say that Elecrow was significantly slower than the other three sources.
Quick-Turn PCB shop review project: Elecrow – [Link]
Peter of Cytec BG writes:
My idea was for pcb designers to be able to quickly, without too much hassle, check their board for correct footprints (especially for connectors) and collisions between components. Currently one can change soldermask colors, silkscreen layers, move and rotate components around, change component models and import step files.
3D Eagle BRD Viewer – [Link]
By Chris Glaser @ ti.com:
Especially for switch-mode power supplies (SMPSs), the printed circuit board (PCB) layout is a critical but often under appreciated step in achieving proper performance and reliability. Errors in the PCB layout cause a variety of misbehaviors including poor output voltage regulation, switching jitter, and even device failure. Issues like these should be avoided at all costs, since fixing them usually requires a PCB design modification. However, these pitfalls are easily circumvented if time and thought are spent during the PCB layout process before the first PCBs are ever ordered. This article presents five simple steps to ensure that your next step-down converter’s PCB layout is robust and ready for prototyping.
Five steps to a great PCB layout for a step-down converter – [Link]