OSH Park PCB Issues?

General Chit Chat
User avatar
Zippy Zapp
Member
Member
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 6:52 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

OSH Park PCB Issues?

Post by Zippy Zapp »

I have read here and there about people having problems with OSH Park PCBs. I have used them for a long time because I appreciated that they are made in North America and can get them pretty quickly. I haven't really had any problems with them at least I thought. Now I am starting to suspect that one of my DIY projects is not working as a result of quality.

There is a open source Super Snapshot Clone on github. I used the gerbers to order some PCBs from OSH Park. All the components came from Digi-Key. I built one up and it did not work. I thought maybe it was a fluke so I built another one up and it also didn't work. When I say it didn't work, on the first one you get a black screen. On the second one the C64 power light doesnt even come on.

I checked all the chips with a BackBit Chip Tester Pro and they are all good. Then today I decided to revisit it and checked the PCB pads on the RAM and ROM and many adjacent pins are all joined together on one board and on the other board a few less. I checked my 3rd blank PCB and some of those are joined together too. That does not seem right to me. Address or data lines shouldnt be joined together.

So am I right in concluding that the PCBs have internally shorted traces?

I guess I need to get some made from JLCPB.


Commodore - Changing the world 8 bits at a time.
User avatar
Zippy Zapp
Member
Member
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 6:52 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: OSH Park PCB Issues?

Post by Zippy Zapp »

To answer my own question yes they do have shorted traces. I ordered a set from JLCPCB and soldered up a new SS Clone and it works perfectly. The boards from OSH were ALL bad. What a joke. I paid more for those 3 PCBs then I did for 10 at JLC PCB. $30 or so from OSH for 3 ENIG boards. $17 at JLC for 10 ENIG boards. Never again. Now I am re-ordering all my PCBs through them because I just don't trust OSH Park any longer.
Commodore - Changing the world 8 bits at a time.
User avatar
Gyro Gearloose
Member
Member
Posts: 406
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2015 5:20 am
Contact:

Re: OSH Park PCB Issues?

Post by Gyro Gearloose »

Well, to be fair to OSH, wouldn't it be better to take it up with them and see their reaction first?
The price one pays for pursuing any profession, or calling, is an intimate knowledge of its ugly side.
banman
Member
Member
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 15, 2019 12:21 am
Contact:

Re: OSH Park PCB Issues?

Post by banman »

Hi Gyro Gearloose and Zippy Zapp,


This is a very interesting topic.A good conversation starter.

I wonder what other people's experiences have been.

Has any one else used other PCB fabrication companies to provide services to the general hobbyist?

I am sure many people would like to know. :D
User avatar
eslapion
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 1128
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 10:11 am
Location: Canada
Contact:

Re: OSH Park PCB Issues?

Post by eslapion »

I don't order from Osh Park anymore. I had a few GandALF PCBs with shorts between traces and it destroyed the costly XC9572XL on them.

Switched to JLCPCB since.
Wealth, like happiness, is never attained directly. It comes as a by-product of providing a useful service. -Harland D. Sanders
User avatar
Zippy Zapp
Member
Member
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 6:52 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: OSH Park PCB Issues?

Post by Zippy Zapp »

Gyro Gearloose wrote: Sat Apr 16, 2022 10:40 pm Well, to be fair to OSH, wouldn't it be better to take it up with them and see their reaction first?
Of course which I have already done. The problem is that these boards were ordered and finished a couple years ago so well outside of any guarantee they may have or not. I am not a hater, I just think they have some Quality Control issues. The purpose of my message was to see if anyone else had experiences like mine. A few other people reached out to me including experiences from Corei64 who had some similar issues.

Given that the C64 community has a lot of open projects, like these, more and more people are getting boards made for hobby. Like me, they may not be EEs or in that field so may run into issues like I did and not suspect the PCB since it should be the one thing on these projects that you should be able to rely on, IMHO.

I have migrated all my boards to JLCPCB, thanks to @eslapions recommendation. I have put in 2 orders so far, with about 50-60 various PCBs in each. I haven't tested all of them but so far so good. And they did do the beveling, which is slight considering that my gerber files probably didn't account for the space at the end to do it. They came out fantastic and am very pleased. Also the shipping speed is great too as one order with cheap shipping took about 7 days and the other with Fedex took about 3.

I really like the premise of OSH being done in North America and all that but if they don't test the boards and they are much more expensive, then I can't ignore that.
Commodore - Changing the world 8 bits at a time.
banman
Member
Member
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 15, 2019 12:21 am
Contact:

Re: OSH Park PCB Issues?

Post by banman »

Hi Zippy Zapp,

It is very interesting to read about others experiences with PCB board manufacturers.

Big flame wars will erupt with some of my comments I'm sure.

I too used JCLPCB boards on eslapion's recommendations.

I noticed that JCLPCB boards ship from Hong Kong and PCBway come out of mainland China.

I am only a mediocre hobbyist at best. I only ordered HASL PCB boards.
I was very satisfied with this company. They payed attention to details on the C64 cartridge edge connector that sadly PCBway didn't.
I got a good price on big boards (right on the limit of 100*100mm) that PCBway didn't offer.
I found the physical friction between the edge connector and the C64 mainboard connector is less than with the PCBway boards I had in my opinion.

The C64 mainboard cartridge connection is near unobtaniun these days. I wouldn't enjoy replacing one if I had to either.

I have seen compatible ones on the internet however on closer inspection they like have a square leading edge instead of an angled leading edge with the metal spring connectors. I am not sure how this would work out long term with original gold plated cartridges.

I did use OshPark once for some very basic 25xx to 27xx ROM conversion adapters. They came in gold plated. They were ok, though there wasn't much complexity in these PCBs.
User avatar
Gyro Gearloose
Member
Member
Posts: 406
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2015 5:20 am
Contact:

Re: OSH Park PCB Issues?

Post by Gyro Gearloose »

Well it's a dynamic industry that is constantly having to deal with supply issues, it's not just in the hobbyist scene that we see fabrication issues. It's not normal to have such quality variations of a known-good design, but this is the world situation now.
The price one pays for pursuing any profession, or calling, is an intimate knowledge of its ugly side.
Post Reply Previous topicNext topic

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests