Grounding for PCB work?
  • Do you think it is necessary to ground your body with an anti-static bracelet or something of the like when working on PCB and corresponding components? I have been playing with IC’s resistors and capacitors for more than a year and have never run into an issue, but I was also not aware of the potential risk until recently. What are your thoughts?

  • Real men do it without…just kidding ;-)
    I do not use ESD wrist-wraps, because none of the ic i might possible kill are too expensive. The only exception is working on highly integrated and expensive SMT stuff, due to worktime and costs.

  • Personally i use a Piece of ESD Foam to work on and pay attention that all the tools i use that are plugged into mains (Soldering Iron, Scope) are ESD Savy. I open the ESD Bags of the sensitive Parts, throw them on the Foam, touch the Foam and i am ready to go. I would strangle myself with a wristband….

  • get an ESD mat with a wrist strap. You can find nice ones on ebay all the time.

  • i was wondering some time about this too. then i built my first WTPA sitting on a carpet that was literally throwing sparks on every step, and nothing happened. so, what else would i need to kill the chips?

  • a socket.

  • French onion dip usually helps me kill chips quickly, handfuls at a time in fact.

  • in all my time soldering and doing stupid things, i’ve never once blown a chip. am i just lucky? i think most of the chips we work with are pretty hardy.

  • ESD protection is more for SMT. Like everyone else, I’ve never had an issue and and I’ve zapped a couple of things recently. Winter is brutal for static.

  • one explanation i’ve heard is that chips must have been far more snesitive to statics in earlier days but today seem easy to handle.

  • Well, I certainly feel a little better about it now :P

  • Never bothered taking anti-static measures, and never had any problems when making MI products that could be blamed on static damage, as far as I’m aware.

    Maybe I’ve just been lucky.


  • Can’t say I’ve had any problems not using one. Just don’t rub a balloon on your head before handling chips.

  • I just came across this somewhat related video… :)

  • HAHAHHAA, thank you. that made my night.

  • LOL! :-)
    I never had any issues with components or RAM dying on me because of static discharge. I don’t use a wristband or anything fancy. The only thing I do is that I touch a well grounded/earthed part like the radiator or the shield contact of the mains and while holding this I touch the ground on the board or computer I’m working on. After that I just handle sensitive chips like normal, but I always keep them in the special foam and when I have to store sensitive PCBs I put them on paper and never on plastic or styrofoam surfaces.

  • @larsen that is very funny

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