Chadlanser - Sorry I missed this when you posted your question here a few months ago.
In terms of vehicle wraps, it depends on who will see them, what the company is selling, and what they need people to know.
For example, if a car spends a lot of time driving around the campus and town of an engineering school, a car wrap about an Arduino-based product might be a good thing. That same wrap out in any old town would likely be a waste of money. In the case of the Arduino product, the only people really interested are the actual potential buyers. Without a lot of them, the wrap is just noise written in a foreignlanguage.
Example number two: Go back to that "any old town". If the company is selling something that a lot of people need and has an easy message, the wrap might work. A safety switch that would turn off your coffee pot if you left it on, and could easily be installed by about anyone, would benefit from a wrap. There are a lot of potential customers and the message is easy.
Example number three, again in "any old town." The electronic product, in this case, is something that the city might spend $250,000 on that would protect homes from lightning strikes. In this case, the wrap is more like a political lobbying device. The people that see it most won't buy it, but they may tell their city manager to look into it. A wrap might be a good idea.
@Duane the ideas you presented about good marketing and bad marketing strategies are interesting and companies should take them into consideration when advertising a product. There is a small electronics company in our city that started using custom vehicle wraps to advertise their business, what do you thing about their decision?
Duane Benson, I thank you for this article and you had some very good information to share. But I think you are still on the dark side. Engineer marketing? I am sure the people at Harvard Business School will laugh.
David - With a thru-hole part you want the capillary action to wick solder down through the hole to the other side. That same capillary action will cause the solder to creep further down the part leg causing the required fillet.
empty vias don't have the component lead to keep the solder in place and, especially with surface mount parts, everything tends to be smaller, so there's really no good place for the solder to go.
Duane, very interesting, thanks. But what is the difference (apart from maybe size) between C in your diagram (which you say is a NO NO NO!) and a through plated hole for a normal wired or DIP component?
Karen - I pass out this sort of information in a company blog. Probably nine out of ten posts on the blog are tips and hints for PCB designers - not too much marketing glurge. We also have a few white papers that are essentially the top ten list of things not to do.
Based on what I've seen and heard, there are a couple of different reasons that errors like open via in pad are so common. One is that fewer young engineers have older engineer mentors available to them. Another is that, with staff reductions, many companies that used to have PCB layout specialists on staff don't any more and the design engineers are now tasked with the layout, which isn't necessarily their area of expertise.
A long time ago, I worked for In Focus, the projector company. We had a layout specialist - Tom, who's last name I can't remember. This guy was an absolute wizard. He could be in the CAD layout software hitting key-codes with one hand, moving the mouse with the other, all while holding a conversation with someone behind him. Most engineering departments used to have that but very many have downsized that position away.
But wait - there's more... those same engineers are often tasked with more to do in a shorter period of time than was the case years ago. Sometimes the designer simply isn't allocated enough time to take the care to learn and avoid such mistakes.
Hi Duane, greast explanation of a common problem and why it's not a good idea. Why is it, do you think, that engineers continue to keep making the same mistake? I think back to my early days as an engineer, when the "old guys" would take younger engineers under their wing and tell us about all the bugaboos to avoid that they'd only learned through hard experience. Does your company, for example, include this in a "Ten Things NOT to do when designing a PCB?"
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