Tech Tidbit: Mousebites
Happy new year! I’m starting a new series where I’ll share short tech tidbits that I discover as I continue to learn more about synth design and electronics manufacturing. First up: Mousebites.
A mousebite is a tiny connector between two printed circuit boards that contains a series of stratigically drilled holes. These holes create a weak point that can be snapped-off by hand.
It’s an easy way print multiple boards on a single panel.
Snapping the boards apart will leave small nubs on the edges of the boards. I use a file to clean them up. You can see me do that in this video.
Which footprints to use
I have been informed that JLCPCB prefers 5mm mousebites, which madworm also conveniently added last month in the same repo.
I’ll make sure to use those in future designs!
For PCBWay, pricing is based on the panel dimensions + the number of different designs within the panel.
Five pieces of my MiniOSC board, for example, which had three designs and 94.1 x 128.5mm total panel size costs about $60 USD at the time of writing.
I have no experience printing with mousebites using other manufacturers, but I assume they’d follow a similar pricing structure.
It probably would have been cheaper if I printed my modules using three separate projects, but I chose to do this mostly because I was curious about the process. It’s also pretty convenient to share them as kit this way.
Due to the extra cost per different design, this would make more sense if you have to print the same design multiple times in one panel.
I’ll try to print the three boards separately in the future to compare the experince and expenses.
Let me know if you’ve used mousebites. Any tips for a noob like me? Tag/DM me on IG @benjiaomodular. Thanks for dropping by.