Storage of assembled PCBs

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by kojinakata, Mar 22, 2015.

  1. kojinakata

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2015
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    Hi everyone,

    I just received some stepper drivers and an Arduino from a friend, but how should I store them? Is a plastic bag ok? Will humidity or sunshine damage the boards?
     
  2. MaxHeadRoom

    Expert

    Jul 18, 2013
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    If plastic bags put some silica-gel tablets in the bag.
    Max.
     
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  3. kojinakata

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2015
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    Thank you Max. I will try to find some silica gel packets.
    Should I get some antistatic bags? What are they for? I don't want to ruin the drivers because they are not cheap :).
     
  4. MaxHeadRoom

    Expert

    Jul 18, 2013
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    If you want to be extra safe, but there is not much really exposed in stepper drivers to worry about static.
    Max.
     
  5. kojinakata

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2015
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    [​IMG]
    These are the ones I got. Pololu A4988. I am not sure if they are not exposed. I am going to buy some antistatic bags then.

    Thanks Max, for all the help!
     
  6. crutschow

    Expert

    Mar 14, 2008
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    Antistatic bags are always a good idea, better safe than sorry.
     
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  7. MaxHeadRoom

    Expert

    Jul 18, 2013
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    I assumed you had enclosed commercial drives such as Gecko etc, not open boards!:confused:.
    Max.
     
  8. kojinakata

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2015
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    Any tips for storage of open boards? :D
    Sorry for not specifying what type it was.
     
  9. MaxHeadRoom

    Expert

    Jul 18, 2013
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    Probably anti-static would be in order in that case.
    Max.
     
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  10. Arx&Sparx

    New Member

    Feb 19, 2015
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    use a grounding wrist strap when handling. anti-static bags or anti-static foam will work. you could get by with plastic bags and dessicant. if you have a storage device available (drawer, cabinet, etc) i guess you could get by with lining the inside with electrical tape, but not a strong recommendation.
     
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  11. takao21203

    Distinguished Member

    Apr 28, 2012
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    How about plain plastic boxes? I use them for all parts including ICs.
    Some are in antistatic bags, some arent.

    How about keeping the plastic box shut? If you have water dust from the seaside, actually you should keep them almost airtight + add dehumidifier.

    If you dont have static generating carpets or floor coating, you dont need to do a thing about antistatic.

    If there are enough parts inside a plastic box theres so much metal no charge can build up.

    Another thing is aviation (sending it with plane). Certain ICs should have antistatic foam and bags.

    We do actually have sea climate here so the air isnt very dry, but not as much as causing corrosion.
     
  12. kojinakata

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2015
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    Thank you for you reply. I am going to keep each driver in a static bag in a plastic box with silica gel packets. That seems to be the safest route.
     
  13. takao21203

    Distinguished Member

    Apr 28, 2012
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    If there are residual dusts, you can spray water mist in the area.

    Old plastic bottle from window cleaner can be refilled many times.
    You can cover smaller plastic compartment with aluminium foil, or put antistatic sheets on the sides.

    then you dont need to keep the original component bags.
    Not complete cover is required, so you can cut them down.

    A professional from the US used this trick: Put 50 PLCC ICs in regular plastic bag.
    Add a small piece antistatic foam.
    And also store ICs in aluminium foil.

    I later used kitchen foil strips, just when using these foils, must check them for static.
     
  14. takao21203

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    Apr 28, 2012
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  15. crutschow

    Expert

    Mar 14, 2008
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    Regular plastic bags and plastic boxes are not recommended for the storage of modern solid-state parts unless you want to take the chance of occasionally zapping a part due to static buildup in the plastic.
     
  16. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
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    Once they are on a board with a mid to high value resistor connecting the gate to the source, Is there really so much risk?
     
  17. crutschow

    Expert

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    Hard to say. Depends upon the circuit.
    But is it worth taking the chance?
     
  18. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
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    Depends. Anti-static bags are just low conductivity, static-disappative plastic with a few 100k ohms resistance per cm. I would say it depends on the circuit as well but, if I take many different permutations of circuits out of the picture and focus only on circuits where the gate is connected to the source with a resistor, I was thinking I was just as safe as the plastic bag. Am I wrong or does the plastic bag add other safety factors to the story?
     
  19. takao21203

    Distinguished Member

    Apr 28, 2012
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    some plastics have antistatic properties
     
  20. crutschow

    Expert

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    Standard plastics can collect significant static charge on their surface which can zap a sensitive semiconductor junction. That's why all suppliers dealing with semiconductor parts use ESD safe plastic bags and containers. I wouldn't take a chance storing any of my electronics in standard plastic, but that's your choice.
     
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