What is the one thing that intimidates most people when working with electronics? The circuit board. You can relax though. PCB board assembly is not nearly as scary as it appears to be because it is not as high tech. The main thing you need to do is be prepared. The process is very clean and concise, as long as you follow a few simple rules with the preparation.
1) Keep everything organized because that is key. You will have your kits when you first start. You will also see a checklist. Go through that checklist and make sure you dot every “i” and cross every “t”.
A great example is when you set up a PCB project. Inventory the parts and clean as you go. This is one habit you do not want to ever get out of. It is going to make everything much easier as you move forward. Some of you may start “building in your head.” You will want to block that idea out. Focus on cataloging and labeling everything you have.
2) The next thing you want to do is give your boards a bath. Yes, you heard me right. Some people find cleaning your circuit boards when they first arrive counter-productive. It is actually one of the best things you can do.
“Cleanliness is next to Godliness.”
I am sure most of you have heard that line before from Mike Crisci. However, when you are working with circuit boards, the line is “cleanliness is next to solderliness.” A freshly scrubbed copper board takes less heat than its counterpart. You also get a more thorough wetness through the process.
You can use alcohol and a scotch brite pad because that works the best. Those of you who are facing bad corrosion, you are going to want a glass fiber pen and a steel wool scrub pad. This article https://www.digikey.com/en/maker/blogs/cleaning-pcbs has some very insightful and comprehensive tips on how to clean your PCB. It might also provide valuable insight into what other cleaning solutions you can use besides alcohol. Give it a read sometime.
3) You should work low to high. The reason is that your board can become very crowded, very fast. You might run out of room for everything you need. One way you can avoid that is by planning out your strategy in advance. Plan out how you are going to populate your board. That is why you go low to high. You are probably going to want to start with the resistors and work your way up.
4) A pair of tweezers is going to be your new best friend. They are small enough to get into the tiny places and large enough not to topple over the larger pieces. Just something to think about.
5) A magnifying glass is also going to be your new best friend. You will need to see in the tiny spaces on your board. I do not care how great your eyesight is. There is no way you can see that well. Your best bet is to use one the jeweler’s use. You can find them online or in a store. Make sure they work well with your eyes though.
6) You are going to want to get a hot glue gun. A hot glue gun can help secure the insulation in your circuit board.
Printed circuit boards
Today’s electronic devices are smart, fast, and powerful, and they all run on printed circuit boards. Electronic components as small as a grain of salt interact with one another to execute complex commands and applications. As a result, quality assurance of the PCB’s design has become a necessary requirement to ensure electromagnetic compatibility and avoid any electrical interference.
Positioning components as close together as possible to utilize space without malfunctioning is the holy grail of designing and manufacturing printed circuit boards. Currently, this process depends entirely on the engineers’ experience in using this available cutting edge technology. Since modern companies require complex PCB designs, it’s safe to conclude that outsourcing the process of engineering, design, and assembly guarantees the desired result. Every PCB completed has to undergo testing to guarantee that it doesn’t have any technical defects. If there is any defects, it gets tested again, either manually or by some other type of measuring device.
The latest PCB technology allows for the performing of an automated optical inspection (AOI). The levels of artificial intelligence reached lately, cuts down the number of repeat testing, saving time and money. Seeking the services of a company currently established in the printed circuit boards industry eliminates future problems and provides you with a thoroughly tested and functional solution.