cutting pcb board

Tips to Make Cutting and Soldering Pcb Boards Easier:

The how-to guide on how to cut PCB boards is finally here. We will show you how easy it can be to make your custom printed circuit board by following these simple steps. You'll learn how to select the proper tools, how to layout the design for cutting, and how to use a saw or Dremel tool for cutting out the design. Don't worry about soldering your new PCB - we'll cover that in another article!

PCBs can be cut with a variety of tools, including saws and Dremel tools. To make the process easier, it is important to select the right tool for the job. Saws are good for straight cuts, while Dremel tools are better for curves and intricate designs.

Before you start:

Before you start cutting, you'll need to layout your design on the PCB. This will help ensure that all of the pieces fit properly and that there are no mistakes in the cutting process. It's also a good idea to use a marker or some other type of temporary adhesive to hold the pieces in place while you're cutting.

Once you have everything laid out, it's time to start cutting! For straight cuts, a saw is recommended. If you'd prefer to use a Dremel tool, make sure that it has the proper rotary blades for cutting PCB boards and set your speed appropriately.

If you're using an etching method instead of drilling holes in the PCB, this how-to guide will show you how to do so successfully! However, if you are still unsure how to get started with creating custom printed circuit boards or how they work at all, we'll start from the beginning and help show how easy it can be to design one yourself through our other blog posts:

Here are simple steps:

  1. - Use a PCB cutting machine (if you can afford it).
  2. - Find the center of your printed circuit board with the 'centimeter ruler' tool in Fritzing
  3. - Mark off how big you want to cut your PCB with a Xacto knife or other sharp blade.
  4. - Make sure that there is no copper on the line where you are going to cut so the solder won't go through and create problems for any connections later.  This means if there is already trace routed, rip up those traces before sawing!
  5. - You will now need to either drill out or file down at least one side of each hole that needs to be drilled into - this makes it easier as well as reduces the chance of breaking the PCB
  6. - Cut your board using a fine tooth saw blade. If you're cutting straight through, make sure the direction of the cut is perpendicular to how it will be mounted
  7. - Clean up any burrs or rough edges around the newly cut edge with an emery board or file - this is important as solder won't adhere well to a rough surface
  8. - Finally, if you are going to use plated through holes (PTH), drill out each hole that needs to be drilled for the component leg(s) to go all the way through
  9. - Rejoice! Your PCB is now ready for assembly.
  10. - Use a sharp knife or scissors to cut the board. Be careful not to nick the copper traces on the board.
  11. - Cut the board as close to the component pads as possible. This will minimize the amount of excess board that needs to be trimmed off later.
  12. - If you are using a jigsaw, make sure to use a fine-tooth blade and cut slowly. Start by cutting in one corner of the board and work your way around.
  13. - Once you have cut the board, use a file or sandpaper to smooth out any rough edges.
  14. - To solder components to a PCB do, it is helpful to first tin the pads with solder. You can do this with a soldering iron or with a hot air gun.
  15. - Once the board has been cut and any rough edges have been filed, it is time to solder components onto the board. To do this properly, start by placing a good amount of solder on one pad. Then place your component in position and heat both points with either a soldering iron or hot air gun until you see the solder flow between them.
  16. - When using an LED as a power indicator it's important to keep in mind how much light it emits when voltage flows through it (forward voltage drop) Use Ohm's Law ($V=IR$).
  17. - If there are several LEDs in series then they share current equally because each diode drops half of the supply voltage across itself ($0.45 \cdot V_{drop} = I$)
  18. - If there are several LEDs in parallel then the current is divided evenly among them ($I=\frac{V}{R_{combined}}$). The voltage across each LED will be the same, but the current through each will be different.
  19. - Make sure to use a resistor in series with an LED to limit the current flowing through it. You can determine the value of the resistor by using Ohm's Law and solving for R ($R=\frac{V}{I})$.

For more information on how to solder components onto a PCB board, please see our tutorial on How to Solder: Through-Hole Components.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them in the comments section below.

By hqt001