Circuit Break - A MacroFab Podcast

This week Parker and Stephen welcome James Lewis back to the show after a rather long absence! The occasion stems from James chiming in on a Circuit Break Community thread that Stephen started, asking all about component aging effects. Stephen posed questions like, “What happens to resistors over 5 years? How about 20 years? Are there rules of thumb or better yet, calculations for aging?” And helpful engineer that he is, James got in there and tried to provide some answers before agreeing to appear on the show to elaborate. Other topics covered here include:
  • How no one is completely sure about how to approach component aging
  • When component aging actually affects designers
  • The difference between aging and reliability
  • The impact of components lasting longer than they were meant to
  • Variables, parameters, and other factors that can inhibit and exacerbate aging
  • Levels of violence in polymer tantalum explosions
  • The history of constants
  • Device longevity laws
  • How to define rated voltage for a capacitor
  • +more!
About our guest:

James Lewis
aka Bald Engineer, is a freelance electronics content creator. You might recognize James from the YouTube channels AddOhms and Workbench Wednesdays from Element 14. His interests include talking too much about capacitors, repairing vintage computers, and making unique PCBs that go into poorly designed 3D-print enclosures. James has been on the show a few times now, including episode #141 and #222 to discuss testing and validating PCB assembly design. The episode about ceramic capacitors is still one of Parker’s all-time favorite episodes! 

Relevant links:

Thank you for listening to the MacroFab Engineering Podcast!  We’d love to hear what you think of the show so please tweet at us @MacroFab and join our
Circuit Break Community for discussions or email us at

Creators & Guests

Parker Dillmann
A Founder @MacroFab.Builds Electronics, Cars, & Jeeps.
Stephen Kraig
Chris Martin
James Lewis
Electronics content creator. Videos for @AddOhms. Writer for @hacksterio news. aka KN6FGY and

What is Circuit Break - A MacroFab Podcast?

Dive into the electrifying world of electrical engineering with Circuit Break, a MacroFab podcast hosted by Parker Dillmann and Stephen Kraig. This dynamic duo, armed with practical experience and a palpable passion for tech, explores the latest innovations, industry news, and practical challenges in the field. From DIY project hurdles to deep dives with industry experts, Parker and Stephen's real-world insights provide an engaging learning experience that bridges theory and practice for engineers at any stage of their career.

Whether you're a student eager to grasp what the job market seeks, or an engineer keen to stay ahead in the fast-paced tech world, Circuit Break is your go-to. The hosts, alongside a vibrant community of engineers, makers, and leaders, dissect product evolutions, demystify the journey of tech from lab to market, and reverse engineer the processes behind groundbreaking advancements. Their candid discussions not only enlighten but also inspire listeners to explore the limitless possibilities within electrical engineering.

Presented by MacroFab, a leader in electronics manufacturing services, Circuit Break connects listeners directly to the forefront of PCB design, assembly, and innovation. MacroFab's platform exemplifies the seamless integration of design and manufacturing, catering to a broad audience from hobbyists to professionals.

About the hosts: Parker, an expert in Embedded System Design and DSP, and Stephen, an aficionado of audio electronics and brewing tech, bring a wealth of knowledge and a unique perspective to the show. Their backgrounds in engineering and hands-on projects make each episode a blend of expertise, enthusiasm, and practical advice.

Join the conversation and community at our online engineering forum, where we delve deeper into each episode's content, gather your feedback, and explore the topics you're curious about. Subscribe to Circuit Break on your favorite podcast platform and become part of our journey through the fascinating world of electrical engineering.