PCB assembly tips: the making of the AASaver

Last March Ray presented his design of a portable breadboard power supply with a selectable voltage using the Microchip MCP1640 boost converter he dubbed the AASaver. After receiving and assembling batches of AASaver PCBs he wrote this tutorial explaining the techniques he uses to manually assemble the boards into a finished, functional product. This is a good explanation of how to populate PCBs with SMD components for beginners.

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  1. I bought 2 of those. If you’re gonna use it with a breadboard mount the pins facing up instead of down and use jumpers to connect them. Wish they had mounting holes too. But still they were way worth the price! Especially when you consider I only use “dead” batteries in them…

    1. I also really like this little board for supplying breadboard power (and finding the occasional dropped part with the fairly bright LED flashlight). Nice to not need a cord or dangling battery pack for power and I have a large box of “dead” AA batteries that generally work great for a few extra weeks (at least) with this board.

      Jay’s tip is probably a good one if you have a smaller breadboard (or larger circuit), but mine seems to sit fairly comfortably at the end of a standard 830 hole breadboard. If I get another I may try the “pins up” jumper method.

      A nice article about their “hand-crafted” manufacture too.

      1. I use Male-Female jumpers for this as well as connecting other things like displays and Bus Pirates to my protoboards.

        If it had mounting holes, I could mount it too. Looking at making a metal plate with some rubber feet to mount everything on.

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