Monday PCBgasm

Hey Terrence, hope you have plenty of tin foil…it’s nearly September :smiley:


@ Justin - Oh Man, that looks like Christmas. Going to store to get another roll of foil.
How is your soldering iron and magnifying glass?

@ Terrence - Still under 50 so don’t yet need a telescope :smiley:

Oven is awaiting parts which are somewhere out on the rural roads of Northland…

I just ordered some PCBs for my first real project last week :). I made a 2-layer for the peripheral and a 4-layer with a G120 and a WiFi-Module (plus the powermanagement and a interface) on it as Mainboard (just because I wanted to see how difficult that will be with 4-layers, it could also be done with a 2-layer). As I’m only a hobbyist, and I just have my tiny soldering-station (so no oven :-[) I’m looking forward how hard my design will be to solder (and if it even works at all :D)…
If it works I’ll upload some pictures :), but I just ordered boring green ones ;)…

@ glx - Look forward to seeing your first masterpiece all shiny and populated :slight_smile:

Oh I do :)…

By the way, where do you let your PCBs being produced? I first looked at a local store and on Eurocircuits but there I would have paid nearly 400€ for my PCBs (I think volume-production is much cheaper). Now I ordered it in China, I pay $33 for 25 of the 2-layer boards with HASL (the are only 160x28mm) and $68 for 10 of the 4-layer boards with immersion gold (they are 85x60mm) and they are shipped via DHL-Express (what costs $30, so I ordered some more PCBs that I actually need) that price is ok I think. Normaly I preferably buy things form local stores (if they have the things available) but as I don’t have a goldmine or something I chose the cheaper china-thing, let’s have a look what quality they have :).

@ glx - These ones were made locally in Middle Earth so the quality is better than China… But otherwise i usually use DFRobot for low to mid sized runs.

Second on DFRobot. I got 2 custom boards made from them outside the PCB online order and one was a PCI board with the edge chamferred and they did an excellent job of it.

@ Justin - Here is an interesting thread about LoRaWAN pcbs on TheThingsNetwork. Dan seems to be creating some great boards.

My PCBs arrived today :). I hope I didn’t do any major mistakes, so they work :).

That looks great.

Quick question as I see this is a 4 layer board. Did you also cut out the internal planes in the area around the WiFi antenna which I see you have marked with silkscreen?

By the way, it’s not clear but I don’t seem to see your differential pairs for the USB signals? Can’t see anything coming away from the USB on the top or bottom side?

Yes, the inner planes have a cutout under the antenna-area. Only the USB-port on the left has connected data-lines (on both sides od the port they go to the bottom layer), the top one is just for powering. The plan is, that the left port is only accessible from inside the device, so the “user” just has access to the power port.

@ glx - What PCB design application did you use to get these done ?

I used Eagle Make (Pro I think, the cheapest of the non-commercial buy-versions, because of the size-limitations of the freeware). It’s no commercial product the PCBs are for.

@ glx - Cool, Thx. Read ur pm …

Hm some kind of notifications on new messages would be nice ;)…

By the way, if anyone wonders, there is a small circuit for a LM1117 on the bottomside of the board. It’s because I never designed something with a switching power-supply (thats on the topside), so I didn’t know if that works nice the way I made it, so i just put a backup-solution on the back ;).

@ glx - Since the notifications of new inbox messages are not activated, supported or what so ever … here is one 4u :whistle:

Check your account profile.

@ ianlee74 - I’ve got those active as well and only do get notifications on when a new PM is coming in not for subsequent replies … :wall: