Turrets that you can fit, use, desolder, refit and reuse
Fed up with having to throw away £££££s when I’ve finished with my prototype turret boards, I decided to do something about it. I specified a turret that you can use time and time again, and then I found a British company that would make it for me. These turrets have a screw thread on the underside. So – instead of using a swaging tool to permanently fix turrets to the board – you simply use regular M2.5 hardware to mount the turret. They have the exact same top-side dimensions as the large turret that I’ve been using and selling since 2005. There are lots of benefits:
- Super quick; it takes minutes to make up a turret board
- No special tools are required
- Change your mind? Well, you can just undo the turret and move it
- It works with any size board up to 3.2mm
- You can even mount turrets directly to your chassis (as a grounding point, obviously!)
Well, that’s the official way of using these turrets. But I’ve also discovered that if you use a 2.3mm drill bit, these turrets will self-tap directly into PTFE material – no need for fixing hardware on the underside. See the 2.3mm drill bit page for more info. There’s one small downside to these turrets: they are heavier than the hollow type and that means that they require more heat for solder to flow. If you under-heat the screwmount turret, solder may not adhere to the turret surface. So make sure you use a good soldering iron and make sure you allow it to heat up fully.
The other (completely unofficial) technique is to use leaded solder (instead of modern lead-free); the melting point is lower and these turrets solder much more easily.
Dimensions & info
The turrets are made from brass by a long-time British engineering company. They are then electro-tin plated. Use a 5mm nut spinner/driver/socket/spanner on the top and bottom side to fix them in place. There’s also a board pre-perforated with holes to make building a board super quick. The turret’s threaded end is designed to work with boards up to 0.125in (3.2mm) thickness. The hollow shaft’s internal diameter is 2mm. To create a suitable hole for these turrets, use a 2.5mm drill bit (also available, see tools).
Note that the price shown is per-turret (and there’s a lower price when you buy 50 or more). There’s also a M2.5 hardware pack available.