Author Topic: Which Hot Air Rework station?  (Read 5032 times)

Offline PekkaNF

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Which Hot Air Rework station?
« on: January 30, 2016, 11:39:59 AM »
Need ocasssionally smaller hot air gun that the big un.

Also trying to do some SMD stuff and while I know that those are not strictly needed for SMD work.....you guys are to be blamed:

......
funny coincidence, I just ordered an 858D hot air gun, different make to yours tho. got it off Fleabay.

If you are interested in a review see here. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vva2t21sOAs&index=6&list=PL2862BF3631A5C1AA

 A different make again but the same thing...


Et.Al. You guys are buying these like there is no tomorrow

My plan is to buy a bit better traditional soldering iron (I have weller magnanast...bit clunky, but fine for trough hole componenets, I'll keep it), but I could settle with cheap hot air "iron". How's the plan?

So, if I buy one of these what is the nest better and and how much better it is?

Pekka

Offline PK

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2016, 05:08:18 PM »
We use a couple of those P85's on our rework benches at work. Can't fault them.
Get yourself an induction heated soldering iron. Auto off and a cold to hot time of <10 seconds. Really worth having..
PK

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2016, 03:49:50 PM »
Thanks, I'll start looking at those hotair rework stations.

Not so sure about the HF irons yet. More than one brand?

Pekka

Offline PK

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2016, 04:59:00 PM »
We've bought ATTEN irons from ebay, but that's less about brand loyalty and more just so we only have to stock one type of tips.

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #4 on: February 29, 2016, 05:16:04 PM »
Read this post:
http://www.eevblog.com/forum/chat/deadly-wiring-fault-atten-858d-hot-air-rework-station/

I'm having hard time finding next level hot air station around 100 or so delivered.

Found this one:
http://www.gratten.eu/solder-rework/hot-air-stations.html
But never ordered them, it's not too famous and it has no VAT-number on site. Wonder if it is genuine place.

Now, is there anthing a little better and it can be a bit more expensive?

Second thing is: What sort of solder paste I should get for SMD:s? And flux to go?

Thanks,
Pekka


Offline PK

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #5 on: February 29, 2016, 06:26:53 PM »
When we are hand assembling one or two boards, we don't use paste. It's better to hand solder two and three terminal parts and drag solder the chips.
We only ever use hot air for individual part removal.

Get a no clean flux pen, actually get a couple. Always add flux rather than solder. solder wick is a must have for us too.

Paste goes off (the volatile elements of the flux flash off and it turns to dried booger) quicker than you want it to. There's a big difference between fresh paste and 3 month old paste. Even if it's been kept in the fridge.

In any event, you want lead/tin paste....

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2016, 03:47:00 AM »
Thank you, I knew that paste does not stay good long, but three months.....

So? To solder small SMD opamp or such 8-16 pin bugger:
1) Tin solder pads
2) flux with no clean fluxpen
3) Tack corner pins
4) check aligment
5) Flux
6) Drag solder
7) Check

Pekka

Offline PK

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2016, 04:32:42 AM »
Thank you, I knew that paste does not stay good long, but three months.....

So? To solder small SMD opamp or such 8-16 pin bugger:
Tin one corner pad.
Hold part down and tack corner in place.
Nudge into alignment.
Tack other corner in place.
Drag solder chip with solder wire and a big chisel tip on the iron.

Thought it might be relevant to include a shot of our rework bench. This is where a lot of hand soldering happens.
From left to right.

Little PSU for bringing circuits up and testing them. (Current limiting is an absolute must have)

Fluke 115 Meter, we have a few of these, they are cheap and good.

Pot-o-flux and flux pen applicator. These little pump pots are handy, we use a bigger one for IPA..

Vacuum desoldering iron. Mostly crap, we don't use it much.

Atten inductive heating soldering iron. This thing is just fantastic, see below for a pic of the tip that pretty much lives on it next toa 1/4W resistor.. We solder quite a lot of 0.5mm pitch TQFP packages with that tip.

Another 115. (I said we have a few of them)

ATTEN hot air station.

Brass tip cleaner in holder.

Video microscope. This thing has a 2K output camera on it and a zoom lens. I often pull the whole thing forward and work under it if I'm doing anything smaller than 1mm pitch.

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2016, 06:23:07 AM »
Looks nice

I have two Flukes too, often one has kleps and another has pointy cables.

I need to clear my table....too much stuff on it. I'm planning to hang isolation transformer under table and put two selves atop of the table to put PSU and scope there.

I have given some though to soldering "iron". I think I will partially retire my old trusty Weller magnanast and replace it with modern iron instead of buying hot air station right away.

"Atten inductive heating soldering iron. This thing is just fantastic" Is it like Xytronic LF iron?
http://www.partco.biz/verkkokauppa/product_info.php?cPath=2072_2188&products_id=16268&language=en

Another question "Pot-o-flux and flux pen applicator. These little pump pots are handy, we use a bigger one for IPA.."

Is isopropyl alcohol for cleaning PCB before soldering and cleaning no-clean-flux? Does it has to be water free (100% pharmacy quality) or is 30-50% w/ detergent quality enough?


Pekka

Offline PK

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2016, 07:12:36 AM »
Quote
"Atten inductive heating soldering iron. This thing is just fantastic" Is it like Xytronic LF iron?
http://www.partco.biz/verkkokauppa/product_info.php?cPath=2072_2188&products_id=16268&language=en

Well, that iron has the word 'induction' in its name, so I guess so... The things we like about ours:
Tips are cheap and easy to get.
It goes completely cold if it's idle. This is perfect for us as it means we can leave it on all day, pick it up and it's hot before we can find the solder. Seriously, heatup times are in the order of 5 seconds!

Quote
Is isopropyl alcohol for cleaning PCB before soldering and cleaning no-clean-flux? Does it has to be water free (100% pharmacy quality) or is 30-50% w/ detergent quality enough?
IPA is our 'go to' first solvent. We use it for all sorts of things (as do most electroncs places). Add some tough wipes and a bristle brush and it it gets flux off, we use a roll of paper towel a day, most of it goes into the bin soaked in IPA.

If you don't handle a PCB before soldering, then you don't need to clean it.  Wiping it with IPA is a compromise:
On one hand it removes the oils you put there when you touched it (which you shouldn't have)
On the other, it smears any part of the solder mask or screen print compounds that will dissolve in IPA over the board...


Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2016, 04:32:33 AM »
Good stuff. I really can use that info.

back to irons:
I'm torn between brand old fashioned irons like HAKKO FX-888D and those new sexcy induction Irons.

Really fast heating is not an issue to me, but I see benefit of temperature control loop stiffness - can produce heat fast to solder heavier components too.

I googled ATTEN AT306DH and Xytronic LF-3xxxx in EU they seem a little more expensive than Hakko Fx88d. Hard to judge ergometrics. How is the hand piece?

Another thing is tip selection and availability. Google seems to show plenty of them, but I'd like to buy real/original ones, afraid to get something generic that almost works.

Happy with my old weller tips and parts...still available and I must have bought it about 30 years ago.

I don't like the the fisher price look of the Hakko, but ergometrics and utility is way more important than color.

Pekka

Offline PK

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2016, 08:10:15 AM »


Really fast heating is not an issue to me, but I see benefit of temperature control loop stiffness - can produce heat fast to solder heavier components too.

I googled ATTEN AT306DH and Xytronic LF-3xxxx in EU they seem a little more expensive than Hakko Fx88d. Hard to judge ergometrics. How is the hand piece?
Well, we only solder for a maximum of 8 or 9 hours at a time. But we find them acceptable..Seriously, it's a stick with a hot end.. How ergonomic can it be?
Quote
Another thing is tip selection and availability. Google seems to show plenty of them, but I'd like to buy real/original ones, afraid to get something generic that almost works.
Again, see that pic I posted, we use the biggest tip that came with it for about 95% of all the work. So selection range isn't so important for us.
All tips are fairly cheap. Just get 10 of the ones you use the most.


Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2016, 10:28:58 AM »
Erogetrics...As said I have used a lot of that old weller and I tought is was good...Then I used friends, pico or ersa or some brand stuff and the point was closer to my fingers, made small but noticable difference. Surely professional will produce better work even with coal heated clothes iron, than me with best iron ever, but here I am bout to part away 150 and I really much would like to be happy with my choise. What ever it will be. I'm bit sick now, therefore I have a day to ponder among other chores....

Most of the time I have 1-2 hours of hobby time 0-4 times a week and if I need to solder something it goes pretty fast together (and fixes slowly....).

I'm going to choose something this weekend and order it latest on Sunday.

Soo..I need a big andled chissel per your example and standard and then some other size chissels (I'm most used to 0,8 and 1,3 mm or so....). But apparently I should try drag solder...smallish obliquesish tip?

Sorry to bug you guys but I have zero experience on SMDs and I can't avoid them anymore. I need all the push (heave, kick, whatever) I can get.

Pekka

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2016, 02:00:48 PM »
Ok.

I ordered flux pen, some tips and Hakko FX888D
http://www.batterfly.com/shop/sconti/hakko_fx-888d

It seems to have tips and parts available and should be good eneough without being way too pricey. If it turns out to too small wattage for connectors and stuff then I'll buy cheaper one for that purpose.

It took some time to decide which tips to order, because I needed to order all the tips at once....I ordered 2 each chissel tips I use most often 1,2 ad 2,4 mm wide, then bigger slant one and one that I think could be used for drag soldering.

Thank you for your help.

Pekka

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2016, 09:06:42 AM »
Still waitting it to arrive.

Anybody tried is soldering gun style contraptions. I think someone mentioned havoing touble with one brand.
https://youtu.be/Ft50m8UU5WQ

I would imagine that they work only to trough hole componenets. Which I havent't had that much problem this far. I use very few components worth salvaging.

I want that T-shirt!

Pekka


Offline PK

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #15 on: March 12, 2016, 01:36:53 PM »
They tend to clog up in s short period of time too. We have one, it's rarely used.

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2016, 05:47:53 AM »
Which one you have?

Clogging sounds like pretty fatal shorcoming. Which part of it clogs? I watched some videos, but really can't make much out of them. I think I can live full life without one, but I'm just curious.

Mu iron is halfway Germany now.

Pekka

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #17 on: March 16, 2016, 12:27:43 AM »
Got the iron (Hakko FX888D), few tips and flux pen yesterday, but had only time to unpack it and check that all is in the cardboard box. Didn't have time to test it yet, got out of job late, but it appears nice.

I was affraid of the FisherPrice-looks, it is a little loud, but looks better in real life and in the end I don't care toy looks if it works fine. It appears fine, handpiece is light weight an cable is fexible and long eneough.

Pekka

Offline daber

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Re: Which Hot Air Rework station?
« Reply #18 on: May 10, 2016, 11:56:08 AM »
You guys rock...  sounds like you do SMT work all day long.  I only do it as a hobby so I use the common hot air gun as a reflow tool and as a heat shrink gun too.  I have a small one around 1/2" nozzle maybe 200 watts and a big one around 2" nozzle maybe 1000 watts that can blow the PC board apart if I'm not careful.  I only use that one from a distance of 2-4 inches to mostly preheat the part of the board I want to work on.