These "Solder-less" Breadboards are incredibly handy for building circuits. They are durable and reusable and have tons of work space. They not only hold your parts steady, a breadboard also has internal wiring to make connections super fast.
We've made a lovely video starring Collin, taking you on a journey to understand breadboards and their usage! You can watch it before, after or during reading the rest of the guide.
Breadboards make look like just a slab of plastic, but there are secrets hidden deep inside!
Here's an "X-Ray" of a breadboard:
If you look on the back of your breadboard, there's a yellow waxy paper covering some sticky foam. If you were to peel back that foam you'd see dozens of these metal rows.
(Don't actually do this, you should keep the yellow paper on your breadboard, we'll sacrifice this one for some photos!)
If you pulled the metal parts out with pliers (again, don't do this yourself!) You'd see each one is a metal clip with little teeth. The rows have 5 teeth - one for each hole on the top of the breadboard. (The power rails have 50 teeth)
These little teeth are great at gripping onto electronic parts. When a part is pushed into the breadboard, the clip pushes open and grabs onto the metal leg. Any other parts that are plugged into the other 4 teeth are thus electrically connected together
Each clip can handle at least a hundred plugs and unplugs before the springiness of the clip slowly weakens and eventually stops gripping so well. You'll know when the breadboard needs replacing because you wont feel the clip gripping onto the part when you press it in.
However, this takes years to happen. Even if you did have to replace it, breadboards are quite affordable. Most makers have a half dozen different sizes for projects, sometimes dedicating each one to a 'long term' project and keeping one for playing around.