Prep your materials

copyright 2007 Aubrey Spurlock

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Use a swab moistened with lacquer thinner to remove the ink from the edge of your film strip. Lay the straight edge on the film, exposing only a thin strip of film and rub the swab over the area until the ink is gone. Notice the right edge of the film in the photo to the right. Do this to all edges on ONLY one side of the film.

Cut the film down to the size you need. This will be the footprint of the bridge plus 10mm extra length for cable attachment
 Only the material between the silver ink electrodes will exhibit piezo properties. The material itself is an insulator. In order to keep the two sides from shorting out after the film is cut, you must remove some ink from the edges on one side. The side with the ink-free border becomes the "hot" side of the element. The active area of the pickup is slightly reduced, so keep the border as thin as possible.

  

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Cut a piece of copper foil that is slightly shorter and slightly narrower than your pickup. This will be the hot side shield.

  

 

 

 

 

 Cut a rectangle from the copper foil that is large enough to wrap 3 times around the end of the pickup. This piece of foil will connect the ground side of the pickup to the hot side shield. The width of this piece should be long enough to make good contact with copper on both sides, but not extend under the feet of the bridge when the pickup is in place.

Wrap width = mylar pad length plus the length of the pickup beyond the foot of the bridge.

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Next prepare two pieces of copper shield tape for lead connections. Cut the pieces of the copper foil so that they are slightly narrower than the PVDF strip. They should be  long enough to extend under one foot of the bridge,  plus some extra length for the solder joint. Tin (melt solder onto) a small spot at one end of one piece of the foil. This piece is for the hot side connection and the other is for the ground.

           

Use a toothpick or similar device to pull the hot conductor through the braided shield.

 

Push the shielding back to loosen the braid.
8.

 

Remove the jacket from a half inch or so of your shielded cable

Twist the braid into a tight wire. Strip a short piece of the conductor off of the hot wire and tin both.
Cut  a piece of small diameter shrink tubing for the shield wire and a larger piece to overlap the joint as shown above.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.

Now you are ready to make connections to the hot side.

Cut a piece of self-adhesive mylar film that is the width of your PVDF and about 15 mm long. Attach it to one end of the film, leaving 10mm extending beyond the end of the film. Flip the film over and to the same to the other side. This provides a pad for your lead attachments. The PVDF is very heat sensitive and can be damaged by soldering or heat gun applications.

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