Topics

New HAB PCB

Jared Smith
 

I finally finished the design of my new PCB. It houses the GPS, charge
controller, and transmitter. This will function as a shield that will
mount directly to the Arduino Pro Mini via pin headers, thus
eliminating all wires (except to the solar panels) and decreasing the
weight quite a bit - to maybe 12 grams total.

The Arduino and this PCB will sit back to back. The PCB is the same
width as the Mini, but twice as long. The GPS, connectors for the
tether, and antenna counterpoise connector are at the top, and the
transmitter and antenna radiator connector are at the bottom. The
charge controller stuff is in the middle of the PCB.

There are high odds that something won't work. The PCB design's a bit
sloppy. But I'm to the point where I had to order boards to start
testing. They should be here in ~3 weeks.

The schematic and renders of the PCB front and back are attached.
Feedback or comments are very welcome.

I'm planning to launch a balloon with my previous design this Saturday
if the weather is suitable.

Jared

Jared Smith
 

The new PCBs are here. Photo attached. With the exception of the 2
small solar cells, antenna, and PCB components, this will be
everything for the payload. I've no idea yet if it will work - I have
a lot of find soldering to do before then. But I've already discovered
a minor issue you might be able to help with.

I'm not sure if I sized them wrong or if this drill holes for this fab
house are too small, but the holes for the header pins are too small.
My header pins won't fit through them, so I can't readily mount this
to the Arduino. You can see in the photo that the holes across the top
of my board are smaller than the Arduino ones. They shouldn't be - I
used the official Arduino cad files for the sizing, but something went
awry. Grrr!

Is anyone aware of thinner gauge pin headers that might work? My other
options seem to be grinding down some standard header pins to fit - or
cutting the male ends off of jumper wires and fashioning my own. Any
ideas?

I'll start soldering tomorrow.

Thanks,

Jared

On Sun, Aug 27, 2017 at 11:15 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:
I finally finished the design of my new PCB. It houses the GPS, charge
controller, and transmitter. This will function as a shield that will
mount directly to the Arduino Pro Mini via pin headers, thus
eliminating all wires (except to the solar panels) and decreasing the
weight quite a bit - to maybe 12 grams total.

The Arduino and this PCB will sit back to back. The PCB is the same
width as the Mini, but twice as long. The GPS, connectors for the
tether, and antenna counterpoise connector are at the top, and the
transmitter and antenna radiator connector are at the bottom. The
charge controller stuff is in the middle of the PCB.

There are high odds that something won't work. The PCB design's a bit
sloppy. But I'm to the point where I had to order boards to start
testing. They should be here in ~3 weeks.

The schematic and renders of the PCB front and back are attached.
Feedback or comments are very welcome.

I'm planning to launch a balloon with my previous design this Saturday
if the weather is suitable.

Jared

Bob Wood
 

Grinding the pins would frustrate you a bin as they are already small. Since you only have a few Arduino connections the best route would be wire wrap gauge jumpers.

Bob WA7MXZ

Sent from my iPhone

On Sep 11, 2017, at 7:44 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:

The new PCBs are here. Photo attached. With the exception of the 2
small solar cells, antenna, and PCB components, this will be
everything for the payload. I've no idea yet if it will work - I have
a lot of find soldering to do before then. But I've already discovered
a minor issue you might be able to help with.

I'm not sure if I sized them wrong or if this drill holes for this fab
house are too small, but the holes for the header pins are too small.
My header pins won't fit through them, so I can't readily mount this
to the Arduino. You can see in the photo that the holes across the top
of my board are smaller than the Arduino ones. They shouldn't be - I
used the official Arduino cad files for the sizing, but something went
awry. Grrr!

Is anyone aware of thinner gauge pin headers that might work? My other
options seem to be grinding down some standard header pins to fit - or
cutting the male ends off of jumper wires and fashioning my own. Any
ideas?

I'll start soldering tomorrow.

Thanks,

Jared


On Sun, Aug 27, 2017 at 11:15 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:
I finally finished the design of my new PCB. It houses the GPS, charge
controller, and transmitter. This will function as a shield that will
mount directly to the Arduino Pro Mini via pin headers, thus
eliminating all wires (except to the solar panels) and decreasing the
weight quite a bit - to maybe 12 grams total.

The Arduino and this PCB will sit back to back. The PCB is the same
width as the Mini, but twice as long. The GPS, connectors for the
tether, and antenna counterpoise connector are at the top, and the
transmitter and antenna radiator connector are at the bottom. The
charge controller stuff is in the middle of the PCB.

There are high odds that something won't work. The PCB design's a bit
sloppy. But I'm to the point where I had to order boards to start
testing. They should be here in ~3 weeks.

The schematic and renders of the PCB front and back are attached.
Feedback or comments are very welcome.

I'm planning to launch a balloon with my previous design this Saturday
if the weather is suitable.

Jared


<PicoPCB.jpg>

Jared Smith
 

Bob -

Yeah, I agree that trying to grind/sand them down will be a major
pain. There are 10 header pins between the Arduino and my PCB shield.
If it's not clear from the photo, they'll mate back-to-back.

I think I'll try cutting the male ends off of jumper wires. They're
just a bit thinner than the header pins, but thin enough to fit though
the holes. I'll put them through the standard plastic header spacers
to provide the stand-off. I think that should work, at least until I
can get another order of PCBs here. I've already fixed this and a few
other minor spacing issues.

Thanks,

Jared

On Mon, Sep 11, 2017 at 9:45 PM, Bob Wood <wa7mxz@...> wrote:
Grinding the pins would frustrate you a bin as they are already small. Since you only have a few Arduino connections the best route would be wire wrap gauge jumpers.

Bob WA7MXZ

Sent from my iPhone

On Sep 11, 2017, at 7:44 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:

The new PCBs are here. Photo attached. With the exception of the 2
small solar cells, antenna, and PCB components, this will be
everything for the payload. I've no idea yet if it will work - I have
a lot of find soldering to do before then. But I've already discovered
a minor issue you might be able to help with.

I'm not sure if I sized them wrong or if this drill holes for this fab
house are too small, but the holes for the header pins are too small.
My header pins won't fit through them, so I can't readily mount this
to the Arduino. You can see in the photo that the holes across the top
of my board are smaller than the Arduino ones. They shouldn't be - I
used the official Arduino cad files for the sizing, but something went
awry. Grrr!

Is anyone aware of thinner gauge pin headers that might work? My other
options seem to be grinding down some standard header pins to fit - or
cutting the male ends off of jumper wires and fashioning my own. Any
ideas?

I'll start soldering tomorrow.

Thanks,

Jared


On Sun, Aug 27, 2017 at 11:15 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:
I finally finished the design of my new PCB. It houses the GPS, charge
controller, and transmitter. This will function as a shield that will
mount directly to the Arduino Pro Mini via pin headers, thus
eliminating all wires (except to the solar panels) and decreasing the
weight quite a bit - to maybe 12 grams total.

The Arduino and this PCB will sit back to back. The PCB is the same
width as the Mini, but twice as long. The GPS, connectors for the
tether, and antenna counterpoise connector are at the top, and the
transmitter and antenna radiator connector are at the bottom. The
charge controller stuff is in the middle of the PCB.

There are high odds that something won't work. The PCB design's a bit
sloppy. But I'm to the point where I had to order boards to start
testing. They should be here in ~3 weeks.

The schematic and renders of the PCB front and back are attached.
Feedback or comments are very welcome.

I'm planning to launch a balloon with my previous design this Saturday
if the weather is suitable.

Jared


<PicoPCB.jpg>

Bob Wood
 

That looks like the way to go...

Sent from my iPhone

On Sep 11, 2017, at 9:09 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:

Bob -

Yeah, I agree that trying to grind/sand them down will be a major
pain. There are 10 header pins between the Arduino and my PCB shield.
If it's not clear from the photo, they'll mate back-to-back.

I think I'll try cutting the male ends off of jumper wires. They're
just a bit thinner than the header pins, but thin enough to fit though
the holes. I'll put them through the standard plastic header spacers
to provide the stand-off. I think that should work, at least until I
can get another order of PCBs here. I've already fixed this and a few
other minor spacing issues.

Thanks,

Jared

On Mon, Sep 11, 2017 at 9:45 PM, Bob Wood <wa7mxz@...> wrote:
Grinding the pins would frustrate you a bin as they are already small. Since you only have a few Arduino connections the best route would be wire wrap gauge jumpers.

Bob WA7MXZ

Sent from my iPhone

On Sep 11, 2017, at 7:44 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:

The new PCBs are here. Photo attached. With the exception of the 2
small solar cells, antenna, and PCB components, this will be
everything for the payload. I've no idea yet if it will work - I have
a lot of find soldering to do before then. But I've already discovered
a minor issue you might be able to help with.

I'm not sure if I sized them wrong or if this drill holes for this fab
house are too small, but the holes for the header pins are too small.
My header pins won't fit through them, so I can't readily mount this
to the Arduino. You can see in the photo that the holes across the top
of my board are smaller than the Arduino ones. They shouldn't be - I
used the official Arduino cad files for the sizing, but something went
awry. Grrr!

Is anyone aware of thinner gauge pin headers that might work? My other
options seem to be grinding down some standard header pins to fit - or
cutting the male ends off of jumper wires and fashioning my own. Any
ideas?

I'll start soldering tomorrow.

Thanks,

Jared


On Sun, Aug 27, 2017 at 11:15 PM, Jared Smith <jared@...> wrote:
I finally finished the design of my new PCB. It houses the GPS, charge
controller, and transmitter. This will function as a shield that will
mount directly to the Arduino Pro Mini via pin headers, thus
eliminating all wires (except to the solar panels) and decreasing the
weight quite a bit - to maybe 12 grams total.

The Arduino and this PCB will sit back to back. The PCB is the same
width as the Mini, but twice as long. The GPS, connectors for the
tether, and antenna counterpoise connector are at the top, and the
transmitter and antenna radiator connector are at the bottom. The
charge controller stuff is in the middle of the PCB.

There are high odds that something won't work. The PCB design's a bit
sloppy. But I'm to the point where I had to order boards to start
testing. They should be here in ~3 weeks.

The schematic and renders of the PCB front and back are attached.
Feedback or comments are very welcome.

I'm planning to launch a balloon with my previous design this Saturday
if the weather is suitable.

Jared


<PicoPCB.jpg>