The Future of Laser Plastic Welding is Transparent. (It’s time to leave the adhesives behind).

Pumps, catheters, diagnostic valves . . . when you’re combining clear plastic parts, major headaches can occur. Traditional laser transmission welding requires one half of the component being joined to be laser-transmissive (allowing laser light to pass through), while the other half is laser-absorbing, thereby creating a surface which can melt and create a bond. The challenge when welding two clear (and laser transmissive) pieces of plastic together, is that the laser light simply transmits through both halves of the component, as there is no absorbing material present to heat and melt in order to create the bond. But solving that problem created another.

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Looking to truly complete your PCB engineering lab?

Release your creativity with an in-house prototyping machine.

Ever see those posts about “life hacks” – how to use common everyday things in new, creative ways? Like using a gum wrapper and a battery to spark a flame. (A bit useless unless you’re stuck in the woods, but you get the picture.) At LPKF, we see our engineering customers using our PCB prototyping machines for a lot more than just what they were designed for. What’s more, they are saving significant time while boosting their creativity by not having to send out prototype jobs to a PCB or other fabricating vendor.

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Is it Time to Toss the Pizza Cutter?

The top five reasons manufacturers are turning to UV laser PCB depaneling.

Does it bother you that you’re using a depaneling tool commonly referred to as a pizza cutter when you’re working on sophisticated PCBs populated with highly sensitive components for military, aerospace, or other precision high tech applications?  We thought so. The mechanical stress to the board alone and its impact on yield percentage and quality drives designers and production managers crazy. But your CFO has suggested a UV laser PCB depaneling machine isn’t justified. So you’re left with little choice other than to rely on basic depaneling processes utilizing punches, routers, saws and even your bare hands.

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Proprietary PCB Software: The Catch of Free Design Tools

You don’t have to look far to find a PCB fabrication house that offers a free design package as an incentive. On the surface, these packages seem to be a great deal. They boast features that include extensive part libraries, integrated design schematics, and easy-to-use board creation wizards. And instead of paying hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars for your design software, you pay nothing.

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Musing: What Could You do With Four Days?

Sometimes when you are working so close to something it’s easy to lose sight of the little things that matter. That’s how I felt when I stumbled upon a survey LPKF ran in 2012.

Circulated amongst LPKF in-house PCB prototyping users, 86.5% of the poll’s respondents stated they save four days or more per project when compared to their experiences with outsourced PCB prototyping methods. FOUR days! That’s a lot of time!

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