PCB Assembly. Soldering. SMT. Thru hole. Stencils. Paste. https://www.forksand.com/
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README.md

#Summary

PCBA

PCB Assembly. Soldering. SMT. Thru hole. Stencils. Paste. Equipment. Tools. HOWTOs.

This documents free software and open source hardware manufacturing of PCBAs (Printed Circuit Board Assemblies).

Focus is particularly on tools that can be used with hackerspace- level technology.

Software

Various Free Software (as defined by FSF) applications available for the creation of PCBAs.

Debian

The below packages are in Debian Buster. Note, even though it is in Debian, you may want to build some of these packages from scratch since the version in Debian is old. Debian backports maintains an up to date KiCAD.

The following Debian packages are in use in the current production toolchain:

  • freecad --- Visualization of PCBAs and more. 3D CAD application.

  • inkscape --- vector-based drawing program.

  • kicad --- Electronic schematic and PCB design software.

The following Debian packages are NOT in use:

  • electronics-pcb --- Debian packages for PCB development (meta package).

  • fritzing --- Easy-to-use electronic design software.

  • geda --- GPL EDA -- Electronics design software.

  • gerbv --- Gerber file viewer.

  • lepton-eda --- Lepton Electronic Design Automation.

  • pcb --- printed circuit board (pcb) design program.

  • pcb2gcode --- command-line tool for engraving PCBs using CNCs.

  • pcb-rnd - Modular Printed Circuit Board layout tool.

  • visolate - tool for engraving PCBs using CNCs.

Other Software

Other PCBA software available under Free Software licenses.

Used:

  • J-Tech Photonics LASER Inkscape Plugin.

  • raster2gcode --- Inkscape Plugin.

Not Used:

  • InteractiveHtmlBom --- Interactive HTML BOM generation plugin for KiCad https://github.com/openscopeproject/InteractiveHtmlBom

  • OpenPNP --- Pick and Place software.

  • flatcam --- Free and Open-source PCB CAM. FlatCAM lets you take your designs to a CNC router. You can open Gerber, Excellon or G-code, edit it or create from scatch, and output G-Code. Isolation routing is one of many tasks that FlatCAM is perfect for.

Electronic Design Automation (EDA)

To design PCBs, KiCAD is used. Export Gerber files for manufacturing.

PCB Manufacturing

You can make your own PCB or have them made by numerous suppliers. Recommended suppliers (amongst many):

  • OSHPark --- Strong FLO supporters, high quality, quick turn, USA.

  • DirtyPCBs --- Lowest possible cost out of Shenzhen, China.

  • ProtoExpress -- Quick turn, high quality, high cost, USA.

  • Many others that also support KiCAD!

Board Types and Features

FR1, FR4, etc.

Copper Layer

Cu later.

Soldermask

Green...

Silkscreen

White...

Standards & QC

Standards:

  • RoHS (no lead).

  • cf. NASA Standards.

PCB Assembly

You can have a board assembled by a house such as ProtoExpress, or you can assemble it yourself. There is an endless variety of DIY approaches to this. This you have the PCB finished. You need to:

  • Source components.

  • Place components.

  • Solder Components.

Placement

The many ways to place a part...

  • Fingers.

  • Tweezers.

  • Vacuum.

  • Pick and Place.

What method is used depends on the type and size of the part and what equipment is available. We'll be working with SMT, BGA, and through hole parts.

Solder Paste

To solder SMT parts to PCB.

In use:

  • CHIPQUIK SMD291SNL50T3, 50g jar.

  • Zeph ZeroLead, 96.5Sn / 3Ag /.5Cu, 10cc syringe.

Solder Wire

In use:

  • Kester K1000D, no clean, no lead, 0.8mm.

  • Kester Sn96.5Ag3.0Cu0.5, no clean, no lead, 0.8mm.

Flux

In use:

  • Zephlux No Clean Flux, 14 gr. jar.

Flux Remover

But you just put flux on...

In use:

  • Zeph Flux Remover.

Low Melt Alloy

To desolder, perchance.

  • Zeph ZERO No Lead Low Melt.

Solder Wick

Solder wick, aka desoldering wire.

In use: variety sizes.

Heat

You need to melt that solder...

  • Solder Iron.

  • Skillet.

  • Oven.

  • Hot air pencil.

  • Hot air bath.

PCBA Processes

Working with PCBs and components:

Solder through hole components with soldering iron

HOWTO solder through hole components to a PCB with soldering.

Solder SMT components with soldering iron

HOWTO Solder SMT components with soldering iron.

Solder SMT components with hot air

HOWTO Solder SMT components with hot air.

Solder SMT components with oven

HOWTO Solder SMT components with oven.

Solder SMT components with skillet

HOWTO Solder SMT components with skillet.

Solder BGA components

HOWTO Solder BGA components.

Rework through hole components

HOWTO Rework through hole components.

Current Practice:

  • [Through Hole Component Removal HOWTO] (HOWTO/through-hole-component-removal-HOWTO.md)

Rework SMT components

HOWTO Rework SMT components.

Current Practice:

  • [SMT Component Removal HOWTO] (HOWTO/smt-component-removal-HOWTO.md)

Rework BGA components

HOWTO Rework BGA components.

Create solder paste stencil

HOWTO Create solder paste stencil.

Current Practice:

  • [HOWTO create a solder paste stencil with Inkscape] (HOWTO/laser-solder-paste-stencil-inkscape.md)

Apply solder paste with solder paste mask

HOWTO Apply solder paste with solder paste mask.

Apply solder paste with syringe

HOWTO Apply solder paste with syringe.

Apply solder paste with electronic syringe

HOWTO Apply solder paste with electronic syringe.

Solder Pot

HOWTO Use a solder pot.

  • [Solder Pot HOWTO] (HOWTO/solder-pot-HOWTO.md)

PCBA Testing

Pins.

Equipment

The equipment considered is what is generally available to hackerspaces. This leaves out industrial gear like large wave solder machines.

LASER

LASERS can serve a few purposes in manufacturing PCBAs. Inexpensive LASER cutters are available at many hackerspaces. Inexpensive LASERs can be retrofit to RepRap 3D printers.

  • Cut solder paste stencils.

  • Etch paint, which is then chemically etched.

  • Board marking, such as serialization.

CNC

Large CNCs are overkill for PCBA assembly. Very small CNCs can be used. CNCs are available at many hackerspaces. CNCs can be used to:

  • Engrave PCB.

  • Drill PCB holes.

3D Printer

RepRap 3D printers are available at many hackerspaces. 3D printers can be used to:

  • Make CNC fixtures.

  • Make board holding fixtures.

  • Make other tools, etc.

Solder Station

Solder station tools:

  • Soldering iron.

  • Hot air pencil.

  • Hot air bath.

  • Fume extrator.

  • PCB holder.

  • Lights.

  • Magnification.

  • Solder paste dispenser.

  • Vacuum pencil.

  • Oven.

  • Heat plate.

  • Solder pot.

Pick and Place

A variety of free software compatible and open source hardware pick and place machines are available.

  • OpenPNP designs.

  • LitePlacer. Note, works with Free Software OpenPNP, but is non-commercial design licensed hardware. Manufacturer supplies proprietary application.

Production Boards

Boards manufactured or slated to be manufactured.

Copying / License

This document is available here: https://code.forksand.com/forksand/pcba/src/branch/master/README.md

License: CC By SA 4.0 International and/or GPLv3+ at your discretion. Other code licensed under their own respective licenses.

Copyright © 2019, Fork Sand, Inc.