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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just for a challenge Ive been experimenting with soldering tiny components on to PCBs
ive tried 3 different soldering irons, different tips, different solders including solder paste and different fluxes.
Also hot air rework. At the end of it I managed to remove a 5x5 mm 32pin component off a populated pcb and replace it with a higher spec one.
Heres the practice board…..
Calipers Black Font Scale Material property
 

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ParrotGod
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that is tiny. Which combo did work best for you?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Most definitely the solder paste with hot air. The paste also self aligns the component most times with surface tension when molten. With paste being so granular and grey before heating and then shiny silver when heated to reflow its easier to see when the temperature is right compared to normal solder.

I didn’t have a solder stencil for this one but having one would work much better.

By the way the solder station with hot air gun was only about $100. The iron is quite low power but the hot air gun is fine.
 

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novice jazz player &
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Hi Drifter2 - nice skills set :)

I am having a go at turning a low cost x-y positioner for microscope slides into a mechanical aligner for solder paste stencils. If it works will share more…

c
 

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That is really interesting. I worked for a little while in a small factory that produced electronic scientific equipment. One of the products required a board that could work in a vacuum (without shedding any of the substrate into the vacuum which would become electrically noisy for this application) and ultra low noise (the product was essentially a device for counting electrons) and we used ceramic printed boards. The only other application I have seen them used is inside Bosch ignition modules attached to a Nissan distributor from the late 80's.

The printed ink is really, really difficult to solder to without it lifting up and coming off. Especially if you are using high temperature solder with a much higher than normal melting point. But great training ground for patience, concentration, keeping the mind clear if you are hand soldering SMD components onto them as myself and my colleagues found. Controlled pre-heat was essential.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I’m surprised preheat is mentioned more often in soldering tutorials. It definitely becomes important on high value, high reliability PCBs.
 
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