Perf-Boarding LED Projects
What the heck is a Perf? It is an
abbreviation for perforated and that is exactly what this type of
circuit board is. It is a sheet of either fiberglass or synthetic
resin bonded paper with a grid of small holes that allows you to
assemble a circuit on.
That's pretty much the non-technical
version. I'll get a little more technical down below.
A perf board is often used to
prototype circuits. Components like Resistors, Capacitors and LEDs
are put together on a circuit type board that contains lots of holes
in a square grid usually spaced 2.54mm (0.1") apart. This is the
same spacing used in most IC's, (Integrated Circuits) which allows
you to mount them on sockets or just right on the board and then
solder them together by using either point to point wiring or,
with some copper clad perf boards, connecting the copper traces or
tracks in order to make a complete circuit.
Another method is to use wire wrap
sockets for point to point wiring.
Soldering the leads together on the
trackless perf board requires that you bend leads together and
solder them in groups, then connect the groups together with
insulated wire. With the circuit trace type perf board you cut the
traces in whatever path is necessary to connect all of the circuit
together. The methods used are similar to PCB soldering. The main
point is still the same, make sure the two surfaces are hot enough
to melt solder. Never use the soldering iron tip to melt it.
Here are some examples of some
projects from 20 years ago that I played around with. I can't
believe I still have them around. Can you say "Pack Rat"?
this point I would like to point out that my projects look a little
bit better than this one to the right. Back then I was more
concerned with performance than style. Sure made it hard to
Alternative To Perfs
If you don't have a perf board handy or you
just want to build a small circuit, such as an
LED Flasher Circuit,
you can use an IC (Integrated Circuit) socket and build the circuit
right on it. It's simple and if you use a wire wrap socket, it gives
you lots of room to solder. Here are a couple I put together a while
back. They are just like the one's on my
LED Flashing Circuits Page.