Printed Circuit Board Assembly & PCB Design SMT Electronics Assembly Manufacturing Forum

Printed Circuit Board Assembly & PCB Design Forum

SMT electronics assembly manufacturing forum.

Trace cuts

Chris McDonald


Trace cuts | 24 March, 2000

Our customer has requested that we cut traces and add fly wires alot. What we use now is an exacto knife and a soldering iron to take off the trace. This works but does not look good and is not very efficient. Does anybody know of a tool to cut traces?

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John Storjohann


Re: Trace cuts | 24 March, 2000

I have used either a Dremmel tool or a Pace rework station on the past to do the trace cutting. You basically grind through the mask and the trace with the edge of a very thin cutter, stopping once all teh copper is gone. You may want to cover the cut portion with some liquid mask material.

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Re: Trace cuts | 24 March, 2000

Hello Chris As John says, a Dremel works well but be careful not to let it grab and get away from you or to let it cut too deep on a multi layer board. If you are using one of the traditional long and pointy Exacto blades I can understand the frustration. Try going to an art store and looking at the large selection of blades available. Look for one like a small jeweler's screwdriver about twice as wide as the trace. This will cut the trace cleanly and after the second cut you can sort of "plow" the connecting piece off. You will also need a blade with a short diagonal point for mask removal. Look at the Circuit Technology Center's web site for some good guides on cuts and jumper wires. Good luck John Thorup

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