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PICList Thread
'[EE]:SMD chip prototyping'
2003\10\04@102656 by Ian McLean

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Hello everyone,

It has been some time since I have been on the PIC List, so g'day to
everyone.

I would appreciate any bright ideas that anyone has for prototyping SMD
chips.  I have been using, for example, the FT232BM USB chip from FTDI on my
latest PIC designs (with great success I may add, they work great !), but
boy are they fiddly to prototype with.

My method has been to epoxy them right side up to a veroboard (actually I
don't use "veroboard" as such, but the boards with copper donuts on the
holes only and make my interconnections with Kynar and/or plain wire
traces).  I then run thin Kynar wires stripped of their insulation to the
pins of the SMD chip and solder with a needle point and a magnifying glass.
I can then run the Kynar to appropriate spots on the veroboard for
interconnection.  Whilst this works, and looks pretty neat, it is horribly
time consuming.

I would like to proto chips like the PIC18F8720, but the thought of using
the method above on chips such as this scares the hell out of me.  The FT
chip is only 0.8mm spacing, but I can see my method not working when getting
down to 0.5mm pin spacing.

Does anyone make "header" boards for these chips, something like a solder
pad for the chip with tracks out to pads for prototyping, if you get my
drift ?  I cannot find any such thing from local suppliers.  I have however
found sources of ZIF sockets for some TQFP and SOIC chips, but they are
outlandishly expensive.  I also remember a friend doing this with a HC16
chip and they are not exactly "zero insertion force" anyway, he had to use a
vice to get the damned socket closed over the chip with no real guarantee
that all pins were making good electrical connection to the socket.

Any ideas will be greatly appeciated.

Rgs
Ian.

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2003\10\04@105019 by gtyler

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I also have the same problem, I bought a couple of 18F8720's and then tried
tto make a prototype voard using Boardmaker, but the resolution is not good
enough! I am thinking of creating a footprint 4X full size and getting it
reduced photographically to make a dip header.I suppose it is really time to
change my pcb program.

George
{Original Message removed}

2003\10\04@110302 by Trevor Page

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> Does anyone make "header" boards for these chips, something
> like a solder
> pad for the chip with tracks out to pads for prototyping, if
> you get my
> drift ?  I cannot find any such thing from local suppliers.

I am not sure if they are what you have in mind, but I personally have
been using these SMD IC prototyping PCBs that were obtained from either
RS or Farnell here in the UK, and I also got exactly the same PCBs from
Konrad in Germany when I was visiting there.

Basically it's a Eurocard sized board that has lots of SMD IC footprints
of varying sizes and pitches, with their pads leading out to circuilar
pads that you may solder your Kynar wire to. I have been using these a
lot at work lately. What I did was cut out the footprints I actually
needed from the board and fixed those cutouts down onto the topside of
my veroboard, like with the EPSON LCD driver chip here:

http://www.introspectiv.eclipse.co.uk/images/happy.jpg

By the time I finished this board there were several other 80 and 100
pin SMD chips sitting on it as well, with pitches going down to 0.5 if I
remember right. It was quite easy to do this using the SMD prototyping
boards and chipping them into pieces.

Thankfully my project has moved onto the proper PCB stage now.

Trev

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2003\10\04@111340 by Ian McLean

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Thank you Trevor !  This is exactly the sort of thing I had in mind.  Could
not find this in the Farnell catalogue, but that does not surprise me,
because Farnell's online catalogue really sucks :(  I will dig deeper into
the catalogue to try and find them.

If you have a part number(s) (?) that could possibly save me another
frustrating search through Farnell's brain-dead on-line search engine.

Rgs
Ian



{Original Message removed}

2003\10\04@142331 by Wouter van Ooijen
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part 1 950 bytes content-type:text/plain; (decoded 7bit)

> I would appreciate any bright ideas that anyone has for
> prototyping SMD
> chips.  I have been using, for example, the FT232BM USB chip
> from FTDI on my
> latest PIC designs (with great success I may add, they work
> great !), but
> boy are they fiddly to prototype with.

Make a dedicated PCB....

I sell two FT232BM-PCB kits: one has the FT232BM, and (optionally) the
EEPROM, two resistors and some decoupling, and brings out all FT232BM
pins to a DIP-32 pinout. The other contains a standard FT232BM circuit,
and brings out most releveant connections to a 2x5 pin header.

Wouter van Ooijen

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Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products


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part 2 12717 bytes content-type:image/jpeg; (decode)


part 3 10208 bytes content-type:image/jpeg; (decode)

2003\10\04@143407 by Wouter van Ooijen

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> I sell two FT232BM-PCB kits: one has the FT232BM, and (optionally) the
> EEPROM, two resistors and some decoupling, and brings out all FT232BM
> pins to a DIP-32 pinout. The other contains a standard
> FT232BM circuit,
> and brings out most releveant connections to a 2x5 pin header.

Sorry for the useless jpgs, I meant to attach pics of the build bords,
which can be found at http://www.voti.nl/usb-1/index.html and
http://www.voti.nl/usb-2/index.html

Wouter van Ooijen

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consultancy, development, PICmicro products

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2003\10\04@175959 by Bob Barr

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On Sun, 5 Oct 2003 00:15:11 +1000, Ian McLean wrote:

>Hello everyone,
>
>It has been some time since I have been on the PIC List, so g'day to
>everyone.
>
>I would appreciate any bright ideas that anyone has for prototyping SMD
>chips.  I have been using, for example, the FT232BM USB chip from FTDI on my
>latest PIC designs (with great success I may add, they work great !), but
>boy are they fiddly to prototype with.
>

There's a company that makes a product called "Surf Boards" (or some
similar name). They have various SMD land patterns available. I
haven't used them myself but they look like they'd do the job for you.


Regards, Bob

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2003\10\04@220203 by David P Harris

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Hi-
This might be the place...http://www.beldynsys.com/snapapart.htm
David

Bob Barr wrote:

{Quote hidden}

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2003\10\05@065920 by Ian McLean

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Thank you all for your advice, links, and images on prototyping SMD chips.
I can now cut prototyping time down quite considerably by using one of the
commercial SMD prototyping boards mentioned.  My original method of Kynar
traces to the pins, whilst effective, was way to time consuming and fiddly.
It was a great feeling to get the FT232BM chip working first time using my
method, but I am certainly not interested in doing that time and time again.

As a closing observation on this subject, I would just like to say that the
FT232BM is a chip ideal for prototyping PIC USB solutions.  I cannot for the
life of me understand why FTDI only brought the chip out in QFP format.

Now I cannot wait to start prototyping the PIC18F8720.

Ian.



{Original Message removed}

2003\10\06@025034 by Luis Moreira

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I am using those headers to and I find them the perfect solution... the only
reservation is noise, but saying that I had no problems as yet.
regards
               Luis

{Original Message removed}

2003\10\06@064254 by cdb

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There is another SMD proto board in the US

http://protoboards.theshoppe.com/index.html

I've purchased some of his boards and they aren't too bad.

Colin
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cdb, spam_OUTbodgy1TakeThisOuTspamoptusnet.com.au on 06.10.2003

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