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[DPRG] PCB fab & SMD parts

Subject: [DPRG] PCB fab & SMD parts
From: Ray Xu rayxu123 at gmail.com
Date: Sun Jul 25 11:16:40 CDT 2010

Hey Guys,

Anyone know cheap and fast PCB Fabrication services?  I'm reconsidering my
decision to fabricate my own boards now (advice from a friend)...

Board size would probably be around 6x6in.
I only need a specific board design made several times.  I also have several
designs needed to be made.
Solder mask not required; but would be nice...
silkscreen not required
double sided & SMD use
board material doesn't really matter
Electric testing not needed.
MOST IMPORTANTLY: affordable/reasonable cost and fast fabrication time (1-3
days).  Preferred total cost below $30 per 4 or so boards; $50 at most.

And also...  Since I'm novice to soldering parts onto circuit boards, I've
never really soldered SMDs before.  I'm considering using SMD resistors,
capacitors, transistors (SOT23 package), and ICs (SOIC14 packages or larger)
in my design.  Would the soldermask be very helpful for my level?  What size
resistors/capacitors do you guys recommend?  I want to use a size that is
big enough to be hand soldered and thick enough so it can be easily grabbed
by a small tweezer from the top.  And what about the SOT23; I have scrap
boards and they look awfully small to solder...How hard is it *actually* to
solder?

And lastly....I have this
http://www.vellemanusa.com/us/enu/product/view/?id=522806 soldering station
(and with a couple screw driver-like tips).  Is this suitable for SMD
soldering?

Thanks,

Ray Xu
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