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How To Solder Header Pins

What are header pins and why do I need to solder them you ask?

Many kits you buy only come without the header pins on as it is easier to ship them this way.   You need to solder the header pins on once you get the kit.  Header pins allow the board to connect to other things like power, ground or sensors.

We bought a level shifter recently and needed to solder on the header pins. Before we get to that, here are some different header pins you may encounter.

 Headers

Left to right in the photo above are Double Row Female Headers, Female Headers, Extra Long Female Headers, Male Headers, Right Angle Male Headers. The most common one you may solder is probably male headers.  

I haven't yet had a use for the double row headers. Many microcontrollers come with female headers already on them.  Extra long female headers could be for soldering onto a shield that is then put onto the female header pins of a microcontroller. The male headers snap apart easily with a pair of pliers.  right angle headers can be useful if you want the bottom of a board to be flat and not have pins sticking out of it.

  

Level Shifter 

Here is the level shifter and male header pins I needed to solder.  The easiest way to to this is with a breadboard.  

 Level Shifter And Breadboard

Here I have put the header pins onto a mini breadboard.

Level Shifter On Breadboard

Here the lever shifter is on the pins, waiting to be soldered.

Corner Pins Soldered

First we soldered one pin in opposite corners to make sure the board stays flat on the pins.

Level Shifter With Soldered Row

Now we have soldered one entire row of pins.

 

Soldered Header Pins

 Here is a closeup of the soldered pins.  I could use a little more solder on the pad of pin A4 but it should be fine.

 

Level Shifter With Both Pin Rows Soldered

Now we have soldered the other row.  Gently pull what you have been soldering out of the breadboard.

Done

Here is the level shifter all soldered and ready for a project.  Need some extra header pins for your next project ? These 1x40 40pin 2.54mm Male Pin Header Strips fit on breadboards and are perfect for your next project.

  

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