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ESD kapton tape for SMT production use

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#71616

ESD kapton tape for SMT production use | 21 January, 2014

Hi All,

I have a question to ask. Do we really need ESD kapton tape to be use inside SMT line/ production? Anyway the purpose of the kapton tape is to protect gold finger/ wirebond area from solder splatter.

Please advise.

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#71618

ESD kapton tape for SMT production use | 21 January, 2014

If you're using the Kapton tape to protect the gold fingers from solder splatter, my first instinct is to say,yes, you do need it.

I've had the pleasure of paying to have gold fingers reworked in the past. It is not in-expensive; certainly not equal to the cost of someone taping the gold fingers, in my opinion!

Some will say that if your process is solid, you shouldn't need to protect the gold fingers. I do agree with that...however, I've run boards that were 100% SMT in the past, and still managed to get some solder on the gold fingers.

For my money, at the end of the day, I'd rather spend the time and effort up front to tape the gold fingers than pay to have them re-worked because a splash of solder got on them.

Cheers, ..rob

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#71621

ESD kapton tape for SMT production use | 22 January, 2014

No matter how good your process is, you will get solder on the gold fingers/lands unless they are protected. We have proven that solder will get on the gold fingers in the reflow oven. How that happens....we arent't 100% sure...there are a lot of theories.

In addition you do not want to use kapton to mask wirebond lands. It will contaminate the bond area.

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#71623

ESD kapton tape for SMT production use | 22 January, 2014

Understand that one..but the main issues is..do i really need to use ESD tape or non-ESD tape..since as we all know kapton tape is already expensive..if ESD kapton tape required in SMT line..the cost will be more higher.

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#71624

ESD kapton tape for SMT production use | 22 January, 2014

In the purest sense of ESD control, we would have to say yes, use ESD tape to cover the gold fingers. The gold fingers are connected directly to input/output controls for the card, and, as we all know, when handling boards, we're supposed to avoid connectors/contacts and handle the board edge.

In application, though, I don't think I've ever bought any ESD kapton tape. Taking other precautions when handling the boards (at a grounded workstation, wearing wrist straps) should provide enough protection.

Cheers, ..rob

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