Which soldering tools are you using for SMD?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by jsmith1344, Jul 23, 2013.

  1. jsmith1344

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jul 23, 2013
    1
    0
    Hello,

    so I became interested in SMD soldering after the micro-usb port of my phone was ruined :D, and I wanted to fix it myself. But I have no idea abot brands of soldering tools that are not only good for smd, but also reliable, and that will last for quite some time.

    I know some of the tools I need, which are :soldering iron(ofcourse :rolleyes:), hot air gun, Flux/soldering paste (do I need both?), solder wick,electric desoldering pump.

    I've also seen All-in-one stations which look pretty awesome.
    But I don't have much idea about brands and reliable tools, and what is better to have - All-in-one or separated combination of tools.

    Could you guys tell me which tools you are using, share your experience with them, and if you can recommend me anything else?

    Also, if you could recommend tools that have reasonable price tag (I'm on a budget :p)

    Thanks !
     
  2. PackratKing

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 13, 2008
    850
    215
    I made up a tool for dealing with smd components many long years ago... How much access have you to a light duty machine shop, and that type of skill, plus a little imagination...???

    You need an, iron, with at least 15 watt, 20 is better... output, with a removable tip.

    Take that tip, and a 1" piece of copperplated steel signal carrier from some RG6 coaxial cable. file the end of the tip flat, and drill an appropriate hole to accept the small wire, at least 1/2 " deep... Apply a small amount of heat-sink grease to the small wire, insert it into the modified tip, and swage [ crimp ] it in place w/ a dull chisel. Wipe away any excess heatsink grease, heat the iron, and immediately tin the whole tip, and you are good to go.

    The junction of tip and wire may not tin on acount of the grease... no problem...
    The small wire will provide enough heat to the smd joint to do the deed.
    Cut pieces of .020 rosin core solder into 2/100 inch [ tiny ] pieces, to pick up individually with the hot tip to transfer to your component.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  3. #12

    Expert

    Nov 30, 2010
    16,284
    6,797
    Once upon a time, I saw a jig for holding the parts down while soldering. I took an idea from that. I hold the part in place with the eraser on a pencil for the first solder joint and the first solder joint holds the part in place while I do the other end. This is probably useless for more than 3 or 4 pins.
     
  4. Shagas

    Active Member

    May 13, 2013
    802
    74
    I have recently tried my hand at smd soldering . Using a crappy 10 watt iron with a round tip and 1mm solder and got pretty good results with 0805 size components using solder reflow technique that I saw on youtube . To be honest though I haven't tried smd IC's with small pitch yet.
     
  5. MrChips

    Moderator

    Oct 2, 2009
    12,440
    3,361
    I use a Weller WTCPT with a PTS7 0.015" tip along with 28 gauge (0.015") solder.

    I also use two soldering irons to unsolder SMD resistors and capacitors.

    I do all SMD soldering under a microscope.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Stuntman

    Active Member

    Mar 28, 2011
    181
    47
    There seems to be a lot of hoopla about soldering SMD components. You can solder a great deal of these parts with a good soldering iron with a fine tip.

    For your two lead components, 0603 and up are a breeze. Even with tips that aren't that small.

    Even moderately fine pitch parts can be drag soldered with little practice.

    Now, when you get to BGA, and QFN, etc. You'll have to get a hot air gun.

    There seems to be a VERY limited number of companies actually manufacturing these low cost hot air setups. What I actually see are suspiciously similar models with slightly different exterior looks and a different name badge on them. This may sound like an assumption, but I can tell you on a few different levels why I have found this to be true.

    I use an Aoyue 2702 (hot air, soldering iron, desoldering gun). Its construction is as one might expect for a low cost unit, but works fine (except for now I'm fighting a thermal overload breaker in the wand. Should be an easy fix). Is the combined system worth it? Depends. Price wise, yeah, probably pretty good bang for the buck. I think the system would work well for most hobbyists. If you are going to do a lot of soldering on a regular basis, you may find it worth it to buy a dedicated iron (as I did) making the combined system a hard sell.

    I can tell you that I previously used a lot of soldering equipment from circuit specialists with nothing but good results. I'd look heavily at that equipment.
     
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