Friday, April 12, 2013

Adding a bend or two in the build

Part to the control board build involves fabricating 2 capacitors on the back of the control board. This is not a real big deal but can become frustrating if you don't take your time. If you come to this step and have been at the build for some time and are feeling tired then leave it for the next day. Capacitor 103 (the red one) is a bit more involved as the bends are tricky as well you have to add some insulation the the leads. First off before adding either cap to the board check and double check the location. It's funny how lots of places on the board look the same. With Cap 103 I was not sure if it was better to add the green insulation to the wire cap leads and then bend the leads into place or to bend the leads then add the insulation.......So I tried both ways and there are good and bad to both!

Bending cap 103 leads first

- I was able to easily bend the leads and lay the cap on the board to see how the fit was going.
- Sharp bends (like those at the cap body) were done without any trouble.
- Adding the green insulation was a treat when it came to the tight bends, I found it got hung up.
- The extra pushing needed to add the green insulation took out some of the critical bends out of the leads. So I had to re-bend the wire leads several times.

Bending cap 103 with green insulation wire on

- It was nice to not have to fish the green insulation on once the cap leads were shaped. 
- This method was a one step process, once the bending was done that was it.
- Real sharp bends were not possible.
- At first I used small needle nose pliers to bend the wire but I found this deformed the green insulation on the wire. Once I switch to small jewellers screwdriver to bend the leads around without using pliers the leads looked much better.

So what method do I recommend using.....put the green wire on the leads and then start the bending using smooth utensils to do the bending. Tools such as jewellers screwdrivers, dental tools or any other smooth object you can come up with to do the job. 

When cap 103 is ready to be soldered to the board, with the green insulation  in place and the master piece is good to go......make sure you add the heat from the soldering iron for only VERY SHORT INTERVALS or you will be starting over again as I did!! The insulation will melt very very very easily and expose the conductor to possible shorts. If you do happen to melt the insulation don't leave it have a break and  start over again.

The blue capacitor I found to go real smooth compared to cap 103. No insulation is involved and that is a big bonus. Take your time bending the leads so there is no stress on them when making the connection. 
I also found that adding a downward angle to the leads once they are bent helps the capacitor to lay nice and flat on the board. This is because the leads are in the centre of the capacitor and will sit above the spot where they are to be soldered, a small bend downward at the capacitor "can" will allow the leads and capacitor body to sit nicely.

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