When you are designing a PCB, you need to make sure that you are considering what sort of circuit board it actually is. The design process of a regular rigid circuit board is very different to what you need to do with a rigid flex PCB and so you might come across some problems if you aren’t used to it. Here, we have are going to talk you through some of the common issues with rigid flex PCB design. Keep reading if you’d like some help with avoiding these.
Solder Pad Spacing
One of the first things that you might come across when you are designing rigid flex PCBs can be the issues with the spacing coming between your solder pads. It is really important that you leave enough space between your different solder pads and the traces if you want it to work properly. The common issue is that there can be shortcuts of solder bridges which is something that you would like to avoid.
Have you come across a fracture in your PCB? This could be due to stacked traces which have occurred due to some of the traces cracking when they are on the outside of the bend. This is not ideal as it can cause real problems for your PCB and the product that you are designing. Make sure that any copper stays within the neutral axis of the bend in your PCB to avoid this happening again.
Conductor Stress Points
Another common rigid flex PCB issue that you might come across in the design process is being able to add stress points. You might find that you add stress points to your rigid circuit board with ease but struggle when working with a rigid flex board. Not assessing the issue properly can cause fractures and delamination which is obviously problematic.
Issues With Solder Joints
One of the things that you need to remember when working with a rigid flex PCB is that the solder joint is very rigid in comparison to the other components. This is why you need to make sure that you avoid placing the solder joints too close to the bend in the PCB, otherwise, you will come across a lot more problems. Try your best to avoid this to create an effective printed circuit board for your product.
When you are designing a rigid flex printed circuit board, you need to approach it in a different way to regular rigid circuits. Think about all of the components that you are going to be using and make sure that they are spaced far enough away from each other. If you are able to avoid these common issues, then you should be able to come up with a solid design that will pass the testing stage of this process. Follow our tips and see your rigid flex printed circuit board come to life in the future.