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SMT electronics assembly manufacturing forum.

Reduced component lead diameters

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Reduced component lead diameters | 3 May, 2006

Hi has anyone noticed any issues with reduced component lead diameters on through hole resistors?

All the volume manufacturers have or are in the process of reducing the lead diameters from 0.6mm to 0.4mm due to the huge increase in copper prices over the last 2 years.

Reduced lead strength could lead to issues pre & post insertion.

Any comments?

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Reduced component lead diameters | 3 May, 2006

This is indeed yet another proof that under impulse of the RoHS directives all norms are flushed down the drain. Bean counters are slowly but surely taking over our industry because they no longer face resistance by form of standards. Even the basic standards in engineering get jeopardized "you only change one parameter at the time" In the last couple of years alloys have changed, fluxes have changed, board plating has changed and now the diameter of the copper lead is going to change. High tin alloys desolve copper a lot faster compared to leaded alloys and knowing this we going to get thinner leads??? If s%6# hits the fan it will be very difficult to find the main cause with introducing all these variables all at the same time.

Are component manufactures reporting this to their customers? This will mean design change to have the proper lead to hole clearance.

Thanks Rob for keeping us updated about what's going on in the component-manufacturing world.

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Reduced component lead diameters | 4 May, 2006

Hi Pat,

Not going to change, but has changed. We were first notified about a potential change 2 years ago, but as we're such a volume user we could turn around and say no thanks.

However as every one else has now changed over on commodity parts & copper is so much more expensive we're now left with no choice but to change.

Manufacturers are not always telling their distributors let alone their customers - they are just widening the tolerances in the spec sheets, or in some cases changing from copper to a copper alloy.

We've had to change the 1/8W parts but resisted going to 0.4mm (0.0157 inches) on 1/2W.

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