Seeking Advice: Soldering SMD/SMT

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by thingmaker3, Apr 26, 2007.

  1. thingmaker3

    Thread Starter Retired Moderator

    May 16, 2005
    5,072
    6
    I've read blogs of a few hobbyists who use SMD/SMT components. I am at a loss for how these are soldered onto a board by the hobbyist.

    Anyone here have experience to share or suggestions for further reading? My beloved DIPs seem to be on the same evolutionary path as the dinosours.:(

    Are there hobby level reflow ovens on the market? Can I do this with a heat gun or a toaster oven?

    :confused:
     
  2. John Luciani

    Active Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    477
    0
    I just hand solder the components. As long as you do not design with
    components that are too small you should be fine.

    What I do is (1) flux the pads of a small group of components, (2)
    place solder on one pad of each component, (3) holding the component
    with tweezers reflow the solder on the pad and (4) solder an opposing
    pad and then the remainder of the component pads. It actually goes
    fairly quickly. Make sure to use plenty of flux and clean up fine
    pitch components with solderwick. You also need to periodically
    (usually every hour) clean of the flux.

    Pictures of some of the boards that I have done are at
    http://www.luciani.org/works-in-progress/works-in-progress-index.html

    One nice thing about SMT is the prices are low and they do not
    take a lot of space to store. Pictures of my component
    storage trays are at
    http://www.luciani.org/no-place-to-go/no-place-to-go-index.html

    Here is the equipment and supplies that I use ---

    Equipment
    ---------
    Metcal SP200-11 available new at www.hmcelectronics.com for apx. $240
    SSC-754A tip 30deg bend, 0.02" tip
    7A tweezers (curved tip)
    Luxo illuminated magnifier
    Needle nose pliers
    Cutters

    Solder
    ------
    Kester 24-6337-6422 .015" diameter solder, SN63PB37, water soluble flux
    Kester Flux Pen 2331-ZX
    Solder Wick

    Here are some links to hotplates and toaster ovens.

    http://dlharmon.com/solder/smd.html
    http://www.delorie.com/pcb/hotplate/
    http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/hdr.php?p=tutorials

    (* jcl *)
     
  3. kender

    Senior Member

    Jan 17, 2007
    263
    0
    Take a look at the attached tutorial and at the links below.

    Surface mount soldering in an oven
    A "how to" article about surfacemount soldering with a toaster oven.
    http://www.seattlerobotics.org/encoder/200006/oven_art.htm

    Circuit Board Rework Guide
    A set of tutorials on PCB assembly, repair and rework with videos (mov format). Section 7.0 "Soldering procedures" covers soldering of the surfacemount (SMT) components.
    http://www.circuitrework.com/guides/guides.shtml

    I also have a "SMT Soldering Handbok". It's very thorought, but it's 3MB and I can't attach it. You can download it from my yahoo group http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/OrCADexchange. Once you join, go to "Standards, Guidelines, Tutorials, Troubleshooting" folder in the Files section.
     
  4. thingmaker3

    Thread Starter Retired Moderator

    May 16, 2005
    5,072
    6
    Thank you, gentlemen! I'll be sure to pick up some of the solder paste next time I'm at Norvac.
     
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