Ask the Experts
December 9, 2009 - Updated
December 7, 2009 - Originally Posted

SN96 Solderability Issues

We have been hand soldering a connector using 63/37 solder. The connector has bright electrolytic tin as the finish. Recently we switched to SN96 and have been experiencing solderability issues. We sent samples to an independent test lab and had them run solderability testing using both 63/37 and SN96 with RMA flux. The 63/37 samples all passed and the SN96 all failed for de-wetting. As a side note the tin is plated on at 150 micro-inches thick and the connectors are approx. 2 months old. Can you shed any light on this problem?

B. R.

Expert Panel Responses

It is possible that you damaged the plating by operating your soldering stations at too high a soldering temperature. I would suggest evaluating a direct power soldering system operating at a lower tip temperature.

Edward Zamborsky
Regional Sales Manager
OK International Inc.
Ed Zamborsky is a Regional Sales & Technical Support Manager for Thermaltronics, located in New York. His position requires frequent customer visits throughout North America and the Caribbean and his position encompasses not only sales but the role of trainer and master applications engineer for all of Thermaltronics products. His expertise includes such specialties as hand soldering, convection and conduction reflow techniques, array rework, fluid dispensing equipment, and fume extraction. Ed has authored many articles and has presented many papers on topics such as; Low Volume SMT Assembly, Solder Fume Extraction, SMT Rework, BGA Rework, Lead-Free Hand Soldering, High Thermal Demand Hand Soldering, Lead Free Visual Inspection and Lead Free Array Rework.
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