Last post, I promise - Is there any easy way to connect a broken trace?


#1

I think I may have gotten a little overzealous carving a groove between the signal and the ground on my start button, and now there’s no signal at all. Is there an easy way to reconnect a cut trace, maybe a millimeter in thickness?


#2

yeah. just scrap off where the signal traces to(on the lines) and then get a small 30gauge to solder it.


#3

A 30 gauge what? I tried scraping it off and using a dab of solder to bridge the gap, but the solder doesn’t take to the PCB very well.

edit: Yep, I think that was at least part of my joystick problems, too. The up button doesn’t work at all, and I think there’s a cut trace there, too.


#4

30 gauge wire (very, very thin wire).

Solder isn’t really supposed to stick to the PCB all that well… heated metallic surfaces, however, it should attach to like white on rice.


#5

DO NOT USE SOLDER. Just use some conductive paint and a toothpick. You can probably get some from your local automotive store if you look for a rear windows defogger repair kit.


#6

This is probably the worst advice I have ever heard.


#7

It’s pretty straight forward. Tape around the area, paint it and let dry. I’ve done things like this for years now.


#8

I saw some trace/conductive pens at Fry’s. What are the chances that those would work? I have a audio receiver remote that has a chipped board and I was thinking that might help me fix it…but that little pen of conductive voodoo is over $20. I could just buy a new remote for $45, so I weighing my options.


#9

Conductive pen is the expensive stuff, but the rear windows defogger kit is like less than $10. I’ve used one bottle to do so many mods I can’t even begin to count them all. Just make sure we’re talking about some simple PCB’s were the traces are expose ie: not stuck between a multi-layer PCB.


#10

Could you add some better advice, please? Tomorrow I have to decide whether to bother trying to fix this (possibly a conductive pen?) or just starting over with a new PCB and a lot more experience.

I scratched away some of the green enamel in hopes of getting a good spot to stick a blob of solder to hopefully bridge the traces, but no luck. The broken trace is tiny as hell, and I really don’t think my shaky hands are gonna be able to make a decent connection with an actual wire.

Thanks for the help, though!

edit: I had already heard of the conductive pen thing–would it work? It’s the price of a new PCB…
That windows defogger thing is interesting. What’s the width of the wire? It might be too thick for the trace.


#11

The rear windows defogger kit is a kit you can get at a automotive store that contains conductive paint. You can easily repair PCB traces with it. You don’t have to take my word for it though, google PCB repair and conductive paint to see youtube video’s and multitude’s of forums posts about it. It’s pretty common in computer modding circles. I guess gamingnow thinks they’re all wrong :chat:


#12

go here and read.

http://forums.xbox-scene.com/index.php?showtopic=512248&st=0&p=3406983&#entry3406983

pictures and all. thats how you do it.


#13

This is a wonderful how-to, man, thanks. And it lets me know I wasn’t completely nuts trying to fix it with a bit of solder.

I guess tomorrow I’ll see whether or not I can pull off such a fiddly little repair.


#14

glad to help. its not easy, especially if you’ve never done it before, but its not impossible.