Small pins on PCIE connector.... Thin PCB traces

SteveSFX

Well-known member
Hi all

I have a 36 Way PCIE connector that I am using to link some DIN rail modules I have designed for my project.
They are very nice but I am struggling with actually linking the pins!

The modules link with a small double sided, keyed link PCB. The reason the connectors are linked like this is to keep the footprint within the DIN module if you are not linking them.

But... the widest trace I can get between the pins is 0.3mm which doesn't seem large enough to me. I have 3x pins allocated for ground, 5v and 3.3v. The other pins are signals (mostly I/O).

I have no idea of the current ability of these traces, but I suspect this is the weak link in my design. What ever connector I find, it has a drawback in how it fits.
This connector was also used as it was literally the only one I could find that fitted in the space above the PCB indent of the sides (this is where the enclosure clips together), so the connector cannot bridge this point.

Suggestions?

I did think of breaking out the power onto a larger, separate set of contacts, but this is eating up PCB space. It's already annoying that the top of the PCB is restricted due to these connectors (can't get much in that top space).

Hmm
 

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I have searched extensively and not found a better connector that fits in the enclosure.

The connector is rated at 2.6A.

JLCPCB traces are default 1oz, which I believe is 35μm copper. My link traces are never longer than 50mm.

From this table, it looks like each trace is worth around an amp? Depends on the temp.

https://www.multi-circuit-boards.eu/en/pcb-design-aid/surface/conductor-ampacity.html

This table is for a 2 layer board, and mine is 4 layer. I can ask to increase the layer thickness on the JLCPCB site to 2oz, but that is only for the top and bottom layers.

I think my max current on any pin is 1 amp tops.
 
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