This is a very large row of high quality swiss machine pin headers - break to fit. 40 male pins that can be cut to any size. Used with custom PCBs or general custom headers. Why machine pin? Machine pins are round making better contact with IC sockets and connectors.
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The diameter for each of the pins is 0.50mm.
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Skill Level: Noob - Some basic soldering is required, but it is limited to a just a few pins, basic through-hole soldering, and couple (if any) polarized components. A basic soldering iron is all you should need.
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The usual square pin headers just won't fit into many sockets or breadboards, or require a worrisome amount of force ("Am I permanently damaging my breadboard here?") to do so. These guys fit nicely, they're a good length, they look nice, and they're really easy to solder. Since I can cut to the number of pins I need, they're great for odd-sized breakouts, Pro Mini, and many similar uses. Expensive yes, but I can't find them anywhere else and they do a job nothing else can.
Great product at a great price. Compare with the "biggies" which are probably 5x or 10x as expensive. Would prefer that Sparkfun had the 64 pin version of this though.
These machine pin headers aren't useful very often, they don't go into breadboards naturally or seat themselves as well as the normal male headers, and every time you snap them apart you lose one pin as they fracture there preferentially, not for normal use! However once in a while you have a product with tiny vias you want to tap for testing, or narrow plated holes, then these are really the only good way to go, stiff short pins, great strength, fit all .1 inch plated holes I've ever found.
They do not break clean; one side of the break has a big chunk of stuff, the other side looks like it will have trouble staying in the header. These pins do not retain in a machine socket or make good contact.
You have to account for one lost pin per section when cutting these down. A fine set of cutters will greatly improve the quality of cut.