Soldering and the BabyOrangutan

Just wondering if anyone has had issues when soldering pins or headers to the babyO. For various reasons I am on my third one and with each one I have experienced an issue of a “dead” connection. I solder a lot and work with SMT parts so I am pretty comfortable, but I just got a new mega168 the other day and soldered header sockets to the board. Motor 2 did not work and the motor itself works fine. I then touched the motor to pins 10 and 12 of the motor driver and it worked fine so I know it is the connection of M3/M4 Not sure if there was a bad trace or what, but it is a bit frustrating to have this happen with a new board. I will now have to solder jumper wires from the chip to make the new board work. Any thoughts are appreciated.

Thanks, Mike

I did some serious modification two Mega168 Baby-O boards, and I found that the header through holes and traces stood up quite well to repeated abuse with a soldering iron, hot air rework system, and heated razor-blade. One of the H-Bridge chips stood up less well when I tagged it with the iron by mistake (my fault), but other than that I have never had a problem with them.



I’m sorry to hear about your experience. We do test all of the units we ship with contacts at the final pad to which you are soldering, and the motor traces are relatively wide, so it’s surprising that one might fail. The motor traces do go through vias, so perhaps those are failing as the board gets flexed or heated. Is the dead connection always on the same pin?

- Jan

One other caution regarding soldering, but more regarding de-soldering. For the ISP on the Baby-O, the holes the ISP fit into also act as vias to bring PB3 and PB5 out to the edge of the board. (Pretty sure this is true of most of the pins on the ISP, but I know it’s true for those.) No sweat. Works great. But over the weekend I was helping a friend with their Baby-O and the ISP connector wound up installed upside-down. A little de-soldering and the ISP connector was installed the right way.

Problem was during de-soldering two of the pads got lifted, breaking their traces. One one of these it happened on the leg between the ISP and the edge of the board. On the other it happened between the ATMega and the ISP. Two wire jumpers fixed it, but I’d rather not go through that again if I can avoid it.

Be as careful (or more so!) de-soldering as when you’re soldering!