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my problem with ALL esd mats - computer mouse doesnt work. F for fail

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dreamcat4:
Hi there,

The thing that really kills me over these ESD mats is they dont work with the newer optical sensors on modern mice. If you get something like a high performance gaming mouse these days they all use the same exact high resolution sensor in them. And it flat out doesnt work (at all).

I have tried everything i can think of at this point, including tarnishing (dulling) the surface with chemicals, and testing samples of slightly different finish version. Including this 'snakeskin' slightly more textured type. Nothing works!

Please help if you can do anything to help get the manufacturers involved for future products. I have also considered trying to apply some special spray or other coating. However that is itself also highly problematic because you don't want too thick a barrier that will then diminish the anti static capability and performance of the mat  to dissipate charge. And also because any thinner style coating will probably very quickly get removed with the constant cleaning. Which i have to do very often spray down the mat with IPA to remove flux and other soldering crap.

If this problem interests anybody else? Then please say something too! As cannot find anything too helpful online after so many months. At the end of my wit here.

It feels like... so hard to find a solution. For such a deceptively simple problem. Do the manifacturers even care about this issue? Who actually makes these things anyway? And no i dont mean the suppliers / distributors. I mean the manufacturers behind them who actually make these things.

The best i have come to understand is that during manufacturing, the rubber making part of the process where they roll the natural rubber at high pressure and mix it with synthetic plastic(s)... THAT is also the same critical time when they can also include other additives. To change the properties of the material. Once the rubber is made, the material being 'all rubbery' is very resistive to finishing by sanding, or for absorbing chemicals. So its really hard to change that surface layer. At least not without tearing up the rubber.

But ideally what we would need is to embed some speckles or different colored and maybe reflective small particles into the rubber itself. Kindda like a glitter or a marbling effect. That optically the finer higher resolution mouse sensors can 'see'. So there is probably some optimum balance between the individual grain size being large enough to be detected and bounced back into the sensor. And the grains being small and dense enough to match or exceed the finer resolution capability of the mouse sensor. Otherwise you might wind up getting skipping / freezing. Maybe some level of jerkiness as you move the mouse across the table.

I have also wondered if a vinyl sticker could work. Because (unlike a spray) you can clean a vinyl sticker without damaging it. However the problem with those is they are very likely to ruin the ESD capability of the mat. Unless there were to be a very special type of a vinyl sticker. That was also ESD dissipative.

Please help if you can relay my message. And bring it to the attention of the manufacturers. Then it will help to improve these ESD mats and make them better, more useful for all of us!

I suppose you could ask well what might motivate the manufacturer to do this and add an extra step? Well i guess it comes down to 2 things. Either wanting to differentiate your product and sell more than a competitor. Or B) having a broadly much more sellable product, that other types of non-EE customers can also buy them as durable high quality and easy to clean soft matts for computer desks, and gamers etc. Which is a much larger general market than the ESD purpose for electronics / manufacturing.

Nobody talks about this issue. Do other people even care? Or am i really the only guy out there who feels quite so passionately about this topic?

 :palm: :palm: :palm: :palm: :palm:

AndyC_772:
Blue ESD mat + 3DConnexion Cadmouse Pro works just fine for me.

salbayeng:
I just use a sheet of paper under my optical mouse , replace it when it gets real gunky.
Not sure why you have an ESD mat under your mouse in the first place.

Brumby:

--- Quote from: salbayeng on March 05, 2021, 07:36:46 am ---I just use a sheet of paper under my optical mouse

--- End quote ---
I've done that - but sometimes it might get caught and can crease.  My solution is to use a piece of thin but solid cardboard.  Works brilliantly.

and...

--- Quote --- replace it when it gets real gunky.

--- End quote ---

thm_w:

--- Quote from: dreamcat4 on March 05, 2021, 06:49:58 am ---It feels like... so hard to find a solution. For such a deceptively simple problem.

--- End quote ---

A decent mousepad can be had for $2.
I would never use an ESD mat for mouse surface as its too tacky anyway.

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