Peter Lyons

New Geek Badge: Soldering

November 19, 2013

So after a few months of Chinese holiday delays, my ErgoDox DIY keyboard kit has finally arrived. There are amazing videos of how to assemble the thing on youtube, and thankfully my roommate was an electrical engineering student at CU and lent me his soldering station. I've started the process of soldering extremely tiny surface mounted diodes to the printed circuit boards. All together the project will require over 300 solder joints by my arithmetic. Pretty ambitious for a first project given my meatspace skills are severely deficient. The SMDs are so tiny that I need a magnifying glass to check they are facing the right direction. The project will for sure be sloppy, but I'm hoping it will indeed function once done. We'll see. I put about 18 SMDs on tonight and by the third row of 6 I was markedly improved from the first few. But there is a real skill to this soldering stuff.

Anyway, when I get it done, assuming it functions at all, it will be pretty kick-ass and by far the geekiest thing I have ever done. Tomorrow night I'll be taking it with me to the Solid State Depot hacker space open house to work on it some more and maybe get some pro tips.