Salvaging old electronics boards - Is keeping surface mount parts worth it?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by RogueRose, Jun 3, 2015.

  1. RogueRose

    Thread Starter Member

    Oct 10, 2014
    I am taking apart a lot of old electronics and computer equipment that no longer works and is mostly outdated. IDK what is wrong with most of it but I suspect most of the components are still usable so I am salvaging what I can and learning how things are built, what they do and designs, while I dissect. Most of what I am doing is pulling boards and using a heat gun to remove the components and then seperate whatever into component categories.

    The issue I have is with SMD's both IC's and things like caps and resistors and whatever else is SM (those little black plastic/silicon things with 3 pins, two on one side, one opposite (often labeled CRxxx on the board). Others are 4-6-8-12 pin chips which do IDK what...

    Should I try to save these things and or are they worth saving? Any tips on the salvaging process?

    Note - I found that looking over the back of the board, before pulling parts, and straightening any of the leads that pass through from the other side. I use a flathead screw driver and just pry the lead so it is straight, which makes pulling it out from the other side MUCH easier. If I don't do this I think it takes maybe 2-4x as long to pull parts and sometimes it is almost impossible to pull them.
  2. Hypatia's Protege

    Distinguished Member

    Mar 1, 2015
    Succinctly, No --- Most will not survive even careful salvage efforts... Moreover they may be had new for literally pennies a piece...

    Best regards
    RogueRose likes this.
  3. WBahn


    Mar 31, 2012
    I agree. Most of the common electronic parts, through hole or surface mount, aren't worth keeping. But that could probably go 10x for surface mount. There may be a few components that are worth the effort, but unless you know which ones to pull it really doesn't matter because even if you have a pile of salvaged components that contain a few gems those gems might as well be sand unless you know which ones they are.

    But the mechanical parts can be a different story. These are often significantly more expensive than the electronic components and many can be removed with a much greater tolerance to the removal process. But, again, knowing which ones are worth the effort is most of the battle.
    RogueRose likes this.