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FCT and Fine-Line Stencil Expand Market Presence with New Facility in Guadalajara, Mexico

Jun 08, 2015

FCT Companies, a leading chemistry, electronic stencil and specialty manufacturing business, announces the official opening of its new state-of-the-art facility in Guadalajara, Mexico.   While FCT has long had a significant presence in Mexico through sales, service and distribution, the company’s Fine-Line Stencil operation in Guadalajara marks its first manufacturing site in the region and is a noteworthy addition to the broad FCT offering.

The leading-edge, 13,000 square foot FCT Mexico facility will provide multiple electronics assembly products and services including precision laser cut stencils from FCT’s Fine-Line Stencil division, as well as  the company’s revolutionary stencil coating, NanoSlic™.  With its customer base in Mexico expanding quickly, establishing regional product supply will enable FCT to better serve its customers with local support and fast delivery.

“FCT’s investment in this facility now offers customers in the Mexican region more immediate access to our advanced products and processes,” notes Brent Nolan, Vice-President of FCT Companies.  “FCT’s understanding of material behavior and stencil performance for today’s miniaturized assemblies is exceptional and our approach is holistic.  Integrating stencil manufacturing, transfer efficiency-enhancing stencil coatings and next-generation solder materials provides a comprehensive solution for today’s increasingly challenging printing applications.”

Precision stencil manufacturing at the site is managed by Fine-Line Stencil, which is wholly owned by FCT and already firmly established as the leading stencil provider in North America with multiple locations throughout the United States.  This new facility will offer a variety of stencil products including stainless steel mesh-mounted stencils, VectorGuard® High-Tension foils, fine-grain stainless steel stencils and nickel blanks. All are also available with the FCT-developed NanoSlic coating, proven to improve solder paste transfer efficiency and extend the number of prints between cleaning cycles.   NanoSlic is changing conventional perceptions of Area Ratio rules by enabling ample material volumes to be printed through highly miniaturized aperture dimensions.

“The introduction of NanoSlic has completely changed the stencil business and has, in fact, contributed significantly to Fine-Line’s notable growth in recent years,” says Nolan.   “Greater than one third of the stencils that leave our Memphis, Tennessee facility are coated with NanoSlic.  We continue to see this percentage increasing as more of our facilities integrate NanoSlic coating equipment – a capability the Mexico facility now offers.”

NanoSlic is a hydrophobic (repels water), oleophobic (repels oil), durable, permanent coating that is applied via a proprietary application technique to both the underside of the stencil and inside the aperture walls.  The coating helps improve solder paste transfer efficiency by as much as 40% on challenging area ratios and increases the number of prints before required understencil cleaning.  In addition to its proven performance advantage for stencils, NanoSlic is also electrically insulating and is used successfully as a coating to safeguard assembled printed circuit boards against water and corrosion.

Commenting on the significance of this expansion, FCT Mexico Sales Director Sergio Juarez says, “Customers in Mexico are very excited about the addition of FCT’s full-service technical center in this region.  Not only can they source product more quickly, but they will also have the opportunity to participate in process technology days, leverage the expertise of our team and utilize the facility for development projects. It’s a win-win.”

FCT’s Guadalajara, Mexico facility is fully operational and is producing advanced stencils for customers in the region.  For more information, contact Sergio Juarez via e-mail (sjuarez@fctassembly.com) or by phone on +52 (33) 3164-0599.

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