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Broken Trace


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#1 taikwondoejoe

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 03:41 AM

When doing some led swapping on my controller I broke a trace for the player 3 led. So now when player 1 is lit so is player 3. Player 2 and 4 works fine. When your player 3 nothing lights at all. Its kinda crappy right now, so how could I wire this so all 4 are always lighting? If you have any ideas let me know

#2 sicknasty413

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 03:50 AM

If you mean, have them all lit.. at the same time.. then you could have it as.. if youre player 1, then all your SMDs will be lit. This is accomplished my wiring up all the Anodes of the other SMDs to the Anode of the player 1 SMD. And wiring up all the Cathodes of the other SMDs to the cathode of the player 1 SMD... of course, i have no idea if that would work, just speaking outta my ass.

To fix, a trace.. well i have no idea..

#3 RDC

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 06:30 AM

All of the Anodes are already connected.

Are you wanting them ALL to light at the same time? or just to fix the fudge up? (which will have to be done reguardless)

#4 RDC

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 08:21 AM

Without knowing exactly what trace is broken it's hard to give an exact repair procedure, but this will apply to any "trace" that's messed up. If you have a "lifted pad" or other type of fudge up let me know and I'll see what I can do about explaining the repair on it.


Here we have a typical trace, minding it's own business...

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...along comes Mr. X-acto knife and just ruins his fun of sending electrons happily along thier way from point A to point B.

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Now we scrape down the Trace on both sides of the break...

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...making sure you get to the copper under there. If you leave any masking (the green stuff) on there the solder won't stick or may make a weak joint that may fail later.

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Now get out that Soldering Iron and "tin" the exposed Trace parts.

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Now we need some wire to use to "bridge" the gap. In some cases the solder will make the bridge when you tin it, if that happens you can just leave it and you should be OK, but I'd install a wire to be sure. You can use any kind of "stranded" copper wire, speaker wire, an old lamp cord, just about any kind of stranded copper wire will work just fine. This is a small piece of speaker wire.

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Strip off half of the insulation and "fan out" the strands, we're only after 1 of these little things.

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Now that you have it all by itself...

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...ambush it with the Soldering Iron and tin it also. This makes attaching it to the traces MUCH easier in the long run.

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Now you should have yourself a nice little "trace reapir kit". Complete with an insulated "handle" so you don't have to worry about torching your fingers when installing this horribly small wire.

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Lay it over the tinned traces and bridge the break.

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Then get some solder on the tip of the Iron and touch it all at once, it should only take a second or two for it all to "flow" together, since everythings already tinned. Then trim off the excess wire with an X-acto knife, not the same one that made the mess in the first place, use the surgeon this time, Dr. X-acto.

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That should fix up any trace that has a cut or crack in the board that broke the trace along with it, though as I said earlier, a different kind of "break" or other trace fook up may have to be repaired a little differently.


RDC

Edited by RDC, 13 May 2006 - 08:19 AM.


#5 Chancer

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 09:44 AM

Trace Repair Pics Added to the pinned FAQ/TUTs

#6 phenoptix

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 09:44 AM

Excellent advice! Is that stickied somewhere? It certainly should be!
One small thing, maybe different in the states, but in the UK surgeons are known as Mr due to their barber/butcher history tongue.gif
Apart from that superb! beerchug.gif

#7 Chancer

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 09:52 AM

QUOTE(phenoptix @ May 13 2006, 09:51 AM) View Post

Excellent advice! Is that stickied somewhere? It certainly should be!


It was done as we were posting smile.gif


#8 phenoptix

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 09:55 AM

Great minds think alike eh? biggrin.gif

#9 Lemon Crevice

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 12:47 PM

RDC you have great pics and that was a great tut keep up the good work

#10 sicknasty413

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 01:42 PM

RDC your pics make me feel fuzzy inside. happy.gif

#11 RDC

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 01:24 PM

Little more trace repair info for anyone that may need it.


Some of ya may have thought, "Well that was pretty good info, but what if I took something that looked like this...

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...and turn it into something that now looks like THIS"

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Well, 2 things. First, congrats, you've discovered you probably have no business messing with this kind of stuff, put the soldering iron down and slowly back away. Second, crap happens sometimes and maybe this will get you going again.

First remove what's left of the trace, there's no point in trying to salvage it and sticking it back on the board with super glue will only get you into trouble later when you go soldering on it. It may have been completely ripped off anyway ad all you're left with is the little bit around the Via* to work with. *(Via = vee-uh, some also call it an eyelet, it's the part in the board that provides the connection form traces on the top of the board to traces on the bottom)

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Now we need to remove the Masking off there so the solder can stick. Use a Fiberglass Pen, X-acto knife or small flathead screwdriver to remove it. REMEMBER to make several LIGHT scrapes and remove a little at a time, DON'T go trying to scrape it all off in a few passes, you'll just dig into the board and remove what little there is there to work with already, making a real mess to have to fix up.

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Here we can see most of the Masking removed...

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...hold it at different angles or use a flashlight to see if you're down to the copper yet. If it's really shiny you're there...

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...and looking even closer we can see a little bit is still there to be removed (top left corner of the Via).

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Now we have it all scraped down and ready for some solder.

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If you have it scraped down to the copper good enough and go to solder on it, this should be the result you get. If not, remove the solder that did stick and go back and scrape a little more.

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Now remove the excess solder and you have a nice tinned Via for your wire...

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...which should be something really small but easy to work with. This is 30AWG Wrapping Wire (also called Kynar "ki-nar" Wire). You can pick it up at Radio Crack and a ton of online places. Make sure you measure out enough wire to get over the bad spot and from you're new Viato wherever you're soldering the other end to, maybe what's left of the trace on the other end or to another Via and "jumper" over the entire bad spot. Just remember that cutting wire shorter is easy, stretching it really isn't. Also make sure you're not going to be routing the wire anywhere it may get pinched or interfere with something else on the board.

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Once you have the wire the length you need, strip off 1/4" or so from the end and tin it with the soldering iron and a little solder. Then trim it down to just a few millimeters.

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Place the end of the wire in the Via...

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...and solder into place, there ya go. Run the other end to wherever the other half of the original trace was and you should be good to go, be it wat's left of the trace on that end or another Via on that line somewhere.

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Sometimes the Via is filled with Masking or solder from the factory and the wire will not fit in there at all. DO NOT try to clean it out, you'll end up ruining it and making the repair job way more work than it needs to be. Instead just cover over the Via with solder and then lay the wire flat over it and solder it down to it like so.

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#12 HSDEMONZ

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 01:46 PM

Someone contact me in a few days when you are sure this is complete.. and I'll PDF or .DOC it.. and host it permantly for XS. Awesome job.


#13 Lice_01

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 04:54 PM

that really is a nice tut. props to you.

#14 GeToChKn

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 05:28 PM

The other option for fixing traces that I read here on long, long ago is using a rear windsheild defroster repair kit. It comes with a liquid that you paint on and is essentially conductive. When it dries, you have a new trace. I never tried it myself, I just usually do like in the tutorial and use a wire or a piece of wire to make a new trace.

#15 Arjun

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 08:08 PM

Wow very nice tut. Mind if I ask what cam you are using?




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