Are you still using Through-hole technology to mount electrical components on bare circuit boards? Don’t you think you are wasting your precious hours by manually soldering the electrical components on it? You must think of a solution to save this time and invest in other areas of your business operations. And when that’s on your mind, what could be better than using a solder paste stencil for solder application. It will not just save you valuable time but also improve the precision of solder application on boards.
Now let’s see what steps you need to follow to precisely apply solder paste on your circuit boards using solder paste stencil:
1 - Secure
The very first thing you need to do is secure your circuit board on your work surface. This will ensure that it doesn’t move around when you start applying the solder paste to it. For that purpose, you can use standard industrial tape to fix it firmly on your work surface.
2 - Align
After you have fixed the PCB on your work surface, you need to align your stencil over the PCB correctly. While doing this, you need to make sure that each and every hole on your stencil precisely lines up with each pad on your circuit board.
It’s recommended to use fiducials to place the stencil over the circuit board properly. In case you don’t know what fiducials are, they are reference points on PCB, also known as “Fiducial Marker”.
3 - Apply
Now the next thing you need to do is apply a layer of solder paste at a 45 degree-angle over the PCB stencil using a squeegee blade. Once you have done that, you need to slide the squeegee blade once more over your stencil so that you can remove any excess solder paste.
4 - Inspect
After the first solder application, you need to check whether or not solder paste has been deposited nicely on every pad. To do that, however, first, you need to remove your stencil from the circuit board. Make sure to do it carefully as sometimes the stencil might not release properly.
5 - Attach
If there is no issue with the solder paste deposition and everything looks absolutely fine, you can move to the next step. Mount all your electrical components over the printed surface of the circuit board. Make sure you have the tweezers to carry out the SMD device mounting task perfectly.
The last and the most important thing you need to do is reflow-solder your board. For doing this, you will need a reflow oven that you can pick based on your choice. It can be an electric skillset or a modified toaster. For those of you who don’t know what “reflow soldering” is, it is a method of briefly melting the solder applied to printed circuit boards.
Now that you know the whole process of solder paste stenciling, it is time to start doing that, ok? First, head to a trusted PCB stencil seller’s site and then order the stencil you need. Using stencil for solder paste application will make sure you are producing high-quality PCBs.