What is Break-away
Break-away is a method used in the manufacturing and assembly of array boards, which involves the creation of perforated holes or break holes on the edge of a PCB to attach waste rails or frames. These break holes serve as predetermined weak points that allow for the controlled removal of the PCB from the frame without causing any damage or compromising the integrity of the board.
There are two commonly used break-away methods: mouse bites and the V-groove method. Mouse bites are produced when break-routing or break-off tabs are used, resulting in perforated boards that resemble postage stamp holes. This method is often used in FR4 panels. On the other hand, the V-groove method creates smooth edges on the PCB, providing a more aesthetically pleasing appearance for designers who prefer a smooth board edge with a tab-routed panel.
The addition of break-away holes on the PCB’s edge and the use of waste rails or frames provide support during the manufacturing and assembly processes. However, it is crucial to design the break-away points strategically to ensure easy removal of the PCB without causing any damage. This design feature allows for efficient production and assembly of array boards while maintaining the integrity of the individual PCBs.