Winner, Name that Ware August 2015

Last month’s ware is a controller board for a cutting machine, made by Polar-Mohr. The specific part number printed on the board is Polar SK 020162, which I’m guessing corresponds with this machine. Henry Valta pretty much nailed it, by guessing it as a Baum SK66 cutting circuit board. I’m not quite sure what the relationship is between Baumfolder and Polar-Mohr corporation, but it seems to be close enough that they share controller boards. Congrats, email me for your prize!

I do have to give a shout-out to zebonaut for noting the use of “V” designators for discrete semiconductors and linking it to German/DIN-compliant origins. I’m pretty good at picking out PCBs made by Japanese manufacturers, and this little factoid will now help me identify PCBs of EU/German design origin.

2 Responses to “Winner, Name that Ware August 2015”

  1. zebonaut says:

    I appreciate the shout-out. Here’s a source: It’s in German, so I’ll add some info… Some parts are named the same as in other regions (R, L, C). V for tubes, transistors and diodes has already been discussed. Other uncommon designators (for Americans or Asians, at least) are D for digital ICs, N for analog ICs, X for connectors or their individual pins and maybe K for relays. The standard (DIN 40719-2:1978) has been obsolete since 2000, but the successor (EN 81346-2) is very weird in some places (K for transistor or op-amp, anyone?!), so many companies still stick to DIN 40719-2. Or use a mix of American, Asian and European traditions. I, personally, have given up worrying about The Good Way Of Using Reference Designators ™ and just use whatever various companies or existing CAD libraries have to offer, as long as there’s still a slight chance for me to read a schematic or BOM. I even don’t care any more whether a resistor symbol is boxy (Euro) or zig-zaggy (American). However, I am biased by what I learnt from Elektor magazine when I was young, and they preferred T for transistors, American symbols for logic gates and European resistor or capacitor symbols for their, in my opinion, very readable schematics – schematics that give any hardcore DIN person lots of grey hair…

  2. zebonaut says:

    Some more ref-des porn… After re-reading the source I’ve linked above, I’ve found something really strange about the current standard DIN EN 81346-2:2010. The reference designator is chosen not depending on the type of any particular component (resistors would then be called R, as everyone is familiar with), but according to the purpose of a component in its particular application. Quoting the source, a resistor, for example, is not just marked using the letter “R”, but depending on its role in the application using the letter “E” if it’s a heating resistor using the letter “B” if it’s a measuring resistor (e.g. current shunt). “Regular” resistors used to limit current or voltage are still marked using the letter “R”. I don’t see how anyone could maintain a component library in their CAD software using this standard, and I get the feeling that something went badly wrong. The standard’s committee may have had all good intentions, but the result seems to be extremely impractical.