Original Date: 08/15/1991
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Automated Dip Solder System
MagneTek Defense Systems (MDS) uses an automated dip solder system to solder most electrical components to the circuit boards. This system is well suited to MDS's low volume/high mix circuit board assembly operation. Because it is not as complex to set up and run as a wave solder soldering system, it offers a viable alternative to smaller electronic assembly facilities performing hand soldering. Since typical runs at MDS consist of 15 to 18 boards, the rapid setup time provides another substantial benefit.
A conveyor moves the stuffed circuit board through a foam fluxer and dips the assembly into a solder pot. The system can be programmed for up to nine automatic run sequences and can be used for board sizes from 2 inches by 1 inch to 14 inches by 14 inches. MDS maintains that the system cost ($16,000 in 1990 with two trained operators) was recovered after just one highly populated production run.
Since implementing this system, MDS has experienced a reduction in solder joints requiring rework from 10% to below 2% with good consistency. The dip solder system provides good control with the board topside pre-heat temperature and has a small footprint of approximately 3 feet by 8 feet. Also by implementing a dip solder system, the number of previously required personnel to hand-solder joints has been reduced by almost 50%. MDS recently had their soldering process audit certified to MIL-M-28787C by a SEM Quality Audit team.
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