[FACTORY SOLDER BUG] Nano Connect RP2040 Bad Solder for USB Mini Connector - possibly more?

My Arduino Nano RP2040's arrived today! So going through a quick test and check - I plugged the board in and the USB connector snapped OFF the Nano board. Looking under the stereo microscope - there is NO solder paste floated on the shroud ground. That leaves ONLY the main data connectors poorly (and looks like COLD) floated to the board!!!

How many of these missed solder float boards are out there?! How many of these "connector snapped off" (with pictures) are the fault of a poor thermal transfer of paste or bad float temp?

Based on the few pictures I've reviewed in the forum - mine is not the only board with bad solder work. However - unlike others - I'm calling the fabrication out on this.

The solder float issue needs to corrected at the FAB facility ASAP.

My biggest worry is if this connector component is 'cold' flowed, then - "how many other parts have weak adhesion to the Nano board due to the same 'cold' issue" as seen here?

I simply cannot accept these as they are built. I also need to get a completed pre-order fulfillment that will NOT ablate apart with minor handling and connectivity.


Eric J Brewer [KG7STP]

I agree very shoddy workmanship. I've has some solder balls on various boards but none have had cold joints as you've shown. I would expect more that one board went through whatever line these were assembled / soldered on.

Is this a Genuine Arduino RP2040 or a clone? Just curious, I've had good luck with both.

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These are genuine Arduino.cc supplied boards that arrived this week from Arduino via mail.
They failed just connecting and attempting to blow test code right out of the box.

I also took another "sideways" look at the board assembly of these new Nano Connect RP2040 boards. And can confirm they are legit BAD assembly at the fabrication facility.

The anchoring ground pads ONLY have flux-flow crystallized holding them to the board.

When connecting the USB cable, the flux cracked and the data pins (not designed for load) broke free.

Just need to receive legit tested and certified ready boards ASAP for review on a project. :slight_smile:

[PS: Arduino - "New users can only embed ONE image at a time? Seriously?! ]

Proof that a hot air/convection oven was not used or the air flow was uneven.

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Just need these BAD boards - replaced.

I'm sure this is not the case for ALL these boards?

They (Arduino.cc fulfillment) just happen to have shipped BAD devices to a work at home QA guy with a lab of test gear? :wink:

I like how my posts get flagged SPAM. And this is the FIRST forum post. Not sure how FIRST POSTS are SPAM? But okay Arduino. I guess I go with the Shenzen knockoffs from now on?

Of course they are limited. As a forum user I would not like to see some real spam post 10 images?

I like how my posts get flagged SPAM. And this is the FIRST forum post. Not sure how FIRST POSTS are SPAM?

All SPAM are 1st posts, although not all first posts are SPAM. This is not a personal attack Its likely been flagged because it met some criteria the makes it look like spam.

To my knowledge there is no one here who can help your situation. We understand there is a need to vent, we all have to at some point or other.
But don't take it out on the forum. We don't need the attitude :slight_smile: :slight_smile: Like Bobby McFerrin said "Don't worry, be happy"

While I appreciate Bobby McFerrin - ignoring issues and "Being Happy" is not in the cards? I prefer Pharrell Williams anyhow. Just the facts maam.

The forum is used to communicate technical issues "openly and publicly" - this begins with the board of interest. Therefore it's an applicable platform. IF communicating issues and solutions is NOT the focus of the forum - then a forum should NOT be operating?

One must NOT hide certain truths while releasing a new product. One must be willing to remediate issues - should they pop up - especially when it's a fabrication problem. If anything the issues discovered in the field can be your biggest tool to success.

That all said - this is a public facing issue - in the wild now. It needs to be public to ensure poor quality is not purchased by others and to help users receiving such quality issues - to better ID the problem. And to help the fabrication team ensure they are building the best they can.

The overall expectation is Arduino.CC will receive and investigate and ensure quality checks are in place so this does NOT happen. I know there already are. They just need to re-checked and trace back to the crew that was in charge to ensure there are not more in the batch. To ensure there are no more hiding. Or at least to let the support staff know about a possible batch issue internally - so they can better supply support to their public facing consumer(s).

To HELP trace the batch to these received devices:

  • BAD UNIT: ABX00053 03652 is the batch and serial on the failed unit box.

  • UNKNOWN STATUS: ABX00053 03653 is the batch and serial on the other unit. I've not attempted to plug anything into the second unit until I understood the failure of the first.

If ANYTHING I've communicated is NOT up to Par? If there were a BUG database instead - I'd use it! But I could not find anything suitable on the Arduino site(s) I checked.

Also - If ANY of the annotated images or follow-up posts did not have data to help dial in the problem? I'd sure like to know about it. All info contained is coherent and backed up with annotated images. And it's NOT spam.

If including supporting images are classified spam - you got bigger issues. Penalizing users (new or old) who previously had no issues or marks against their account standing - aint the way to win friends or build a market of trust.

(If anything I'm doing someones job at the FAB for them - and Arduino.cc aint paying me for this service tier.)

The automated spam detection system was triggered by you posting multiple links to the same domain as a new user. Obviously, it was a false positive. This is why human moderators review all actions taken by the automated system. That does result in some unfortunate delays as post are staged. It's not a perfect system, but it's the one we have and I think it ends up working out OK in the end for the most part.

The forum is a place for the Arduino community to share knowledge, ask questions, have discussions. It's certainly reasonable to use the forum to share your experiences with Arduino hardware.

I do think that JohnRob makes a good point that, although the information you are sharing is appropriate, your attitude is not so much when you take into consideration that the community of volunteers you're talking with here didn't have any involvement with the manufacturing or sale of the board.

The forum is simply not an effective channel for communicating with the people who are able to investigate the problem you had and find a resolution. The way to initiate that communication is via the contact form:

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Hmmph. I'm a bit disappointed, design-wise. Those all-SMT microUSB connectors have been a well-known weak link even in large-scale commercial products, especially in bare board designs that don't have packaging for addition support.
Usually they rip the (too small) pads clear off the PCB (as shown for the pads in OP's picture that WERE adequately soldered.)
There were widespread reports of this sort of problem with Atmel JTAG-ICE programmers, TI Launchpad boards, and I've had consumer products fail with broken USB connectors as well.

Many of the "maker community" vendors have tracked down microUSB connectors with more through-hole leads, just for better physical security. Such as Micro B USB Connectors - Pack of 5 : ID 4023 : $2.95 : Adafruit Industries, Unique & fun DIY electronics and kits

Admittedly, the rp2404 connect is a crowded board, but I regard the choice of connector as a mistake.

(OTTH, when I get a board with such a connector, making sure the solder joints are as secure as possible, and perhaps adding reinforcement or strain relief of some kind, is one of the first things I do!

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I agree with your perspective on this choice. This was first plug and pre-check. Sadly - it failed.

Moving forward - your copper binding solder fix would be advisable on these Nano Connect RP2040 boards. But - that's what the initial OOBE is used for. Does it work as advertised. Does it break out of the box? :slight_smile:

I did do some sideways probing of the second board (not plugged in yet) and it appears to have good flow and adhesion. This is a visual check only - sideways- under the microscope to assess the flow on the connector in question. Nothing physical is done. No pad scraping or component anchor check using a compression/flex gauge. Purely visual. (In case anyone complains it's the probing that caused the physical failure.)

The fabrication serials are only one digit off. So I presume a bulk sheet sibling at the assembly line? But cannot be certain.

I'm just reticent to do much else with the remaining device until I hear about the ticket I submitted in the support form.

Me too. Right in the trash. I checked my new ones with a magnifying glass to verify they are soldered.

Me too. The first one is already in the trash. For the second one I enchaned the port stability before I plug in.

We are aware of the situation and identified the issue. If you happen to get a board with this issue issue please get in touch with us directly through the contact us form, we will help you out.

Contact us: https://www.arduino.cc/en/contact-us/

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