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Barcodes for PCBs - what systems?

Views: 3165

#55039

Barcodes for PCBs - what systems? | 11 June, 2008

Hi,

we have to print a serial barcode on a low volume PCB. For another module we just used our laser printer and cut the labels to size.

However, those laser labels are easy to rub off, and the new labels are much smaller.

What is best to use for electronics? Is it thermo transfer? Any label printers suggested that do not cost a fortune?

Any suggestion on marking it directly on the PCB?

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#55045

Barcodes for PCBs - what systems? | 11 June, 2008

> Hi, > > we have to print a serial barcode on a low > volume PCB. For another module we just used our > laser printer and cut the labels to > size. > > However, those laser labels are easy to > rub off, and the new labels are much > smaller. > > What is best to use for electronics? > Is it thermo transfer? Any label printers > suggested that do not cost a fortune? > > Any > suggestion on marking it directly on the PCB?

Some of our boards require a permanent date code/rev #. We write with sharpie (or sometimes use printed labels) on each board and then cover with acrylic conformal coating. It is an extra step, but it's never coming off.

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AR

#55053

Barcodes for PCBs - what systems? | 12 June, 2008

It is also possible to etch the barcodes directly on the PCB by using a laser. The solder resist mask is easily burned by laser and if there is copper underneath the contrast is quite good. The contrast is satisfactory even if there is no metal underneath (just PCB laminate) but the marking is quite easily rubbed off. No use trying to burn the PCB laminate though, the beam simply isn't powerful enough. But the marking is very clear and rub-resistent when burned on top of metal areas of a PCB.

rgds AR

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#55058

Barcodes for PCBs - what systems? | 12 June, 2008

charliem, thanks for the reply. I have to admit that I find writing barcodes with a pen a little difficult.

AR, I still look at writing directly onto the PCB. But seems those systems are really expensive.

I will look further into the normal label use. Right now we use labes printed barcode labels for another product. It's looks ok, but it rubs off easily. So we have to protect with transparent tape. It still scans well.

I may look into a low cost thermo printer, or ribbon printer and polyester labels.

What's better for electronics, thermo or ribbon? We put the labels on after soldering.

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RLM

#55059

Barcodes for PCBs - what systems? | 13 June, 2008

We use Zebra printers 170xii. If you buy used you can get them for a relatively low cost ( couple hundred $$). You will need to find software to work with the printer. We use Bar One. Brady Labels supplies a full line of thermal printable labels & ribbon that will not wipe off. I am printing 2D barcodes that are no larger than .150" square on a label that is .5" x .275".

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#55061

Barcodes for PCBs - what systems? | 13 June, 2008

Picky For the basics on bar code label selection, look here: http://www.eiminc.com/articleelec.htm

We have no relationship, nor receive benefit from the company referenced above.

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#55067

Barcodes for PCBs - what systems? | 14 June, 2008

There are several systems on the market. Consider 2D Matrix Barcode, since it will only use a very small area of the pcb. Laser machines for this is among others... /Sincerely

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