Monthly Archives: August 2018

  • Why is flux important in the soldering process?

    Soldering without flux is similar to brushing your teeth without toothpaste- you can do it but it probably won’t leave you with very pleasant results. Flux plays a crucial role in the soldering process. It spreads onto the soldered metal, keeps the surface clean while the molten solder alloy reaches it, and helps the solder spread over the metal. The application of flux is made easier by using a flux pen, giving you more control of the amount of flux you wish to use.

    This is where the new Kester Select-10 Flux Pen on GoKimco comes in, keeping you smiling all Kester Select-10 Flux Penday long because you enjoy properly melting metals together just like you enjoy your pearly white teeth since you use the best flux- err, toothpaste- every day.

    But first, what is Select-10? This is a zero-halogen, no-clean liquid flux. The makeup of the flux makes it great with challenging applications such as reflowed copper OSP boards or with difficult-to-solder components. It doesn’t spread beyond the spray pattern and it won’t clog the fluxer head. The residues are non-tacky and non-corrosive. This flux has the ability to provide desired hole-fill with preheat temperatures of 135 degrees Celsius with no clogging.

    The Select-10 Flux Pen is an inexpensive addition to your work space that will make a world of difference. Being a no-clean pen, there is no cleanup necessary after its use. The pen provides good solderability under air atmosphere and is compliant to GR-79-CORE, the requirement criteria for its physical design.

    The Select-10 Flux Pen was just added to the GoKimco catalog, so make sure to go check it out! GoKimco is a proud seller of a number of Kester products and we are especially excited about the addition of this one. Kester is a leading global supplier of basic and high-tech attachment materials for the electronic assembly, component and microelectric marketplaces.

  • Why would you need canned air for circuit board assembly?

    Techspray 1671-10sIn 2008, a bowling alley employee was performing her everyday responsibilities.  A paper shredder needed cleaning and a can of compressed air seemed like the perfect tool to get the job done. However, this canned air did not have “nonflammable” in its label. The employee tilted the can and sprayed the liquid onto the shredder. The liquid turned into a gas which then ignited a fire, causing burn marks on her face.   Get more info on the incident from the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries posting.

    The incident prompted the US Department of Labor to issue a hazard alert to those that use canned air and to list safety tips to avoid the risk of injury or death. Canned air is not the same as the air you breathe. It consists of compressed gases that if used in a poorly ventilated area, could ignite a fire, as in the case of the bowling alley employee.

    Don’t be alarmed, though. You can eliminate the reality of facing a situation such as this one simply by switching to a non-flammable air can. In fact, this is one of the US Department of Labor’s main safety tips. Now that you know this is the safer option for you, it’s time to choose which one to go with. The Techspray 1671-10S is a great nonflammable option. It’s odorless, leaves zero residues and has a ten-year shelf life. With this product, you can properly clean your electronics and keep them working longer.

    The Techspray air duster can be used to clean a wide number of surfaces and is especially useful for circuit board assembly. It is also safe to use on plastic materials. The air removes microscopic contaminants, lint, dust and metallic oxide deposits before they build up and cause overheating or shortages. Having this nonflammable canned air in your workspace will ensure the safety of you and your projects.

    To give you an idea of the versatility of this product, you can use the Techspray 1671-10S on:

    • Audio/Video Equipment
    • Computers and Other Electronic Equipment
    • Fax Machines
    • Laboratory Instruments
    • Photo Equipment
    • Printed Circuit Boards
    • Printers
    • Surface Mount Devices

    Lastly, since we’re on the topic of safety, here are some tips on how to properly use your Techspray product:

    • Hold the can in an upright position while spraying
    • Never tilt the can more than 40 degrees or shake before or during use
    • Before spraying, press actuator to clear the valve of any liquid product
    • You can use the extension tube to remove dust in tight areas
    • Use short bursts to prevent cooling of can

     

     

     

     

  • Five Uses for the Metcal BVX-201-KIT1 ESD-Safe Fume Extraction System

    Harmful fumes, gases, and dust are common byproducts of everyday industrial practices such as cutting, marking, heating and burning of materials. If you engage in any of these on a day-to-day basis, it is imperative that you add a fume extraction system to your workspace, and the Metcal BVX-201-KIT1 Two Operator Fume Extraction System could very well be the right fit for you! It’s obvious that the system’s main purpose is to protect the safety of employees while also ensuring compliance with workplace regulations, but what does that entail and what makes this system stand out from the rest? We’ll break down five reasons why this Metcal Fume Extraction System can fit well in your workspace.

     

    1. Dynamic Fume Extraction

    The Metcal BVX-201 is built to extract harmful fumes. For example, when soldering materials, flux fumes are created from the solder wire and solder paste.  These fumes contain many chemicals that could cause immediate or long-term health issues such as asthma, bronchitis, and emphysema. This Metcal system extracts those fumes, making your workspace cleaner and safer! The main filter has a HEPA efficiency rating of 99.7% and .3 micron, and an activated carbon filter to remove additional gases.

    1. Compliance with Regulations

    The health and safety of you and your employees is by far the most important reason to own an extraction system, but there are also workplace regulations that require you to own one.  According to the US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), at least half a million workers in industries that use welding face health and safety risks. Because of these risks, OSHA has created regulations to ensure safer and cleaner work conditions. The addition of this extraction system to your space will assist you in your compliance with these regulations, and help you avoid future workplace complications.

    1. Portability

    The Metcal BVX-201 is designed to be placed directly underneath or next to your bench-top, which will free up more of your workspace. With that being said, the system still boasts high suction speeds, the highest of all portable systems, and comes with two BVX-ARML designed to be used adjacent to the workbenches. The entire system is 9kg, which makes it easy to move from space to space if needed.

    1. Noise Level

    The Metcal BVX-201 is not only strong and portable but also quiet. Featuring a brushless motor, this system has a quiet operation with a noise level under 55 dbA. To use your fume extractor, there is an easy access on/off switch. When a filter needs replacing, an audible alarm will inform you so that you can make sure your system stays running properly and efficiently.

     

    1. Reduced Cleaning Cost and Time

    Adding this system to your workspace will save you in both cost and time in the long run by keeping you and anyone else in your workspace healthy and safe. It is an investment for sure, but the ramifications of not having a high-quality system could outweigh the initial expenditure. Also, healthy workers = fewer absences from the workspace = more production.

     

  • Review of Hakko FX-888D Soldering Station

    “Wow, this beauty is beyond expectations...” 

    You could swear this line was used to describe an Oscar-worthy film or a Santorini sunset, but you might be surprised to find these words pulled from the review of a Hakko FX-888D Soldering Station. From hobbyist to professional, it doesn’t really matter what level you’re starting off at when purchasing this product. The updated version of the popular FX-888 boasts all of the old features buyers loved with the addition of new features including a digital calibration that simplifies the setup and operation of the product. The unit heats up in seconds, rising to an adjustable temperature range between 120 and 899 degrees Fahrenheit (50-480 degrees Celsius). To make your soldering experience even easier, you can preset up to five temperatures. The lightweight handset is easy to maneuver and includes a T18-D16 Tip. The entire unit is a compact 4.75 lbs., built to take up less of your bench space, and is ESD safe.

    Hakko T18-D16 Soldering Tip

    In a recent piece by Marco Schwartz, an electrical engineer who writes blog posts on various products, he described the Hakko FX-888D as one of the top soldering irons for beginners and hobbyists due to its easy-to-use settings and features. Schwartz gave the product a 4.5 out of 5 stars, commenting on the useful cleaning station that holds and keeps the tip clean at all times. He loved the password function of the FX-888D which enables the user to lock the settings if desired to prevent them from becoming altered. Schwartz went on to say, “All of the features mentioned above are well documented in a manual that comes with the Hakko FX888D-23BY soldering station. Therefore, you are able to understand how to fine-tune the settings and use the soldering station for best results.”

    Regardless of what you intend to use your soldering station for, the FX-888D is worth the step up from the cheaper options you can find on the internet. Testimonials from those who have bought and loved the product include:

    • “I finally decided to stop buying the $15 cheap ones and buy something that will last and do a great job. No regrets.” -Austin K.
    • “It is one of the best investments I have ever made. After years of using those flimsy, cheap soldering irons you can buy at discount department stores and other big box stores, it is a pleasure to use a precision soldering station like the FX888D.” -Vintess
    • “Great first soldering station. I would never use a cheap unit again.” -Eficker
    • “This Hakko just gives you more for your money.” -R. Davila

    If you wish to add a high quality and reasonably priced soldering station to your workspace today, look no further than right here on goKimco.com, a proud seller of Hakko products.

    Check out this demonstration of the Hakko FX888D:

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