Thursday, June 27, 2013

Weller's New Consumer Soldering Irons: High-Performance Soldering PLUS Lights!

How do you make a Weller high-performance soldering iron even cooler? You add LED lights to it! Among the impressive specs of the new "red dot" Design award-winning Weller High-Performance Consumer Soldering Irons are the three built-in, temperature-resistant LEDs that deliver light to the application.

Available in four wattage models (15, 25, 40, and 80) and six packages (the 25- and 40-watt irons are available in kits), Weller's new soldering irons offer light-, standard-, medium-, and heavy-duty solutions. The new irons offer a low-cost entry into soldering for DIY and hobbyists.

Weller added the superior-life LED technology to their Consumer Soldering Irons to respond to customer feedback for application illumination. The three high-intensity LEDs provide 30-degree focused light at 25 Lumens/ft2 light intensity with no tip shadowing. With a flashlight strength beam length, these powerful LEDs eliminate the need for an alternate light source.

These innovative new products, the Weller SP15NUS 15-Watt High-Performance Light-Duty LED Soldering Iron, the SP25NUS 25-Watt High-Performance Standard-Duty LED Soldering Iron, the SP25NKUS 25-Watt High-Performance Standard-Duty LED Soldering Iron Kit, the SP40NUS 40-Watt High-Performance Medium-Duty LED Soldering Iron, the SP40NKUS 40-Watt High-Performance Medium-Duty LED Soldering Iron Kit, and the Weller SP80NUS 80-Watt High-Performance Heavy-Duty LED Soldering Iron all share the following common features:

  • Three high-temperature, long-life, 5 mm LEDs (at 25 lumens/ft2) that provide enhanced soldering accuracy and application illumination
  • A co-molded, soft-grip ribbed handle design that reduces slippage and maximizes comfort
  • The round handle and triangular area work together for ease of tip rotation and greater tip control
  • Stainless-steel, high-performance heater technology
  • An industry-leading 7-year warranty
  • A cord strain relief for extended life
  • UL Listed – cUL available

The irons differ in their heat ratings (the 15-watt and 25-watt models provide heat up to 750° F, the 40-watt goes to 900° F, and the 80-watt reaches 950° F), and in their recommended application use. Please see the chart below for tips on Choosing the Right Soldering Tool:

Part Number: SP15N SP25N SP40N SP80N
Duty: Light Duty Standard Duty Medium Duty Heavy Duty
Power: 15 Watts 25 Watts 40 Watts 80 Watts
Soldering Wire Connections: <18 AWG 0.04" dia <12 AWG 0.08" dia <8 AWG 0.13" dia <4 AWG 0.20" dia
Compatible Tips: S5 (included), S3, S31, S32 MT1 (included), MT2, MT3, HK11 MT10 (included), ST1, ST2, ST3, ST4, ST5, ST6, ST7, ST8, HK12 MTG20 (included), MTG21, MTG22
Microcomponents, Electronic Kits, Low-Voltage Wiring: ο x x
Printed Circuit Boards, Radio Controlled, Indoor Lighting: ο ο x
Hobby Models, Small Applicance, Small Engine Repair, Crafts: x ο x
Audio Systems, Electrical, Marine, Jewelry, Automotive: x x ο
Heat Sink, Ground Plane, Metal Art, Plumbing: x x x
Choose the Right Soldering Tool: • = Recommended, ο = Acceptable, x = Not Recommended
* IMPORTANT: Use only Weller tips

Weller Consumer Soldering Irons include an appropriate tip, iron stand, and user manual. The two kit versions include those items plus a soldering aid tool, lead-free solder, and two spare tips.

For additional Q Source product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Training Ourselves to Better Serve You

For almost thirty years, we’ve aimed at being a solution-providing resource for our customers. One of the best ways we know how to do that is to be product experts. With that in mind, we’ve recently stepped up our in-house and off-site training sessions so that we can be even more qualified in making product suggestions to precisely fit your application needs.

The Techspray Roadshow

A Techspray representative speaks about
cleaning products for electronic assembly.
Two of our Territory Account Specialists, Jason Kuhlken and Diane Semple, recently attended the Techspray Roadshow hosted by ACI Technologies in Philadelphia. ACI is a premier testing and training facility for electronic assembly. Techspray is a leading developer of cleaners, coatings, and other safety-/performance-oriented chemicals and tools. Utilizing the latest equipment, they provided a perfect training ground for attendees to work with Techspray (and Plato) products in a real-world environment.

Our Account Specialists received an overview of cleaning applications (ranging from industrial degreasing to PCB defluxing), learned about the pros and cons of various cleaning methods, and were able to experience hands-on testing of the cleaning ability, spray force, usability, and plastic sensitivity of Techspray products.

In addition to sending our staff to on-location training sessions, we’ve arranged for a comprehensive schedule of in-house sessions to be attended by our entire crew. So far, these training sessions have included visits by reps from 3M, Unitron, and Elwood PCA/ADE, Inc.

3M on Static Control

3M rep David Leventhal & 3M’s Joe Gantner
talk about static control.
Appropriate solutions for static control can sometimes be confusing to nail down. With variables like environment, materials, and applications plus the concepts of conductive, static-dissipative, and ESD-safe options, well, finding the exact protective products can be challenging for the untrained. Our 3M rep, David Leventhal, and 3M’s Joe Gantner (Northeast Regional Manager), stopped by to put it all in perspective for us.

Starting with the basics about electrostatic discharge, electrical over-stress, etc., Leventhal and Gantner showed us how static is generated, the major problems caused by static, the types of damage to electronics, and all the shocking truths about ESD. Using their top-quality 3M static-control solutions, they demonstrated the different protective characteristics of static bags, the specific uses of ESD mats, and the importance of using continuous monitors.

Zooming Into Stereo Microscopes with Unitron

Unitron’s Peter D. Indrigo demonstrates parfocality.
One of our favorite application categories here at Q Source is microscopy/visual inspection. We understand the importance of using the correct tools whether you’re doing quality control, biological, or other detailed tasks. Peter D. Indrigo, Senior Vice President of Unitron, visited our office a couple weeks ago to help us enhance our knowledge of stereo microscopes, visual inspection systems, and more.

Indrigo brought a wide range of stereo microscopes and inspection systems along with him to provide us with a truly visual, hands-on training session. We began with the basic terms and anatomy of a stereo microscope and watched how all of the pieces fit together to influence field of view, magnification, and working distance. We learned about parfocality and the common accessories (such as ring lights, C-mounts, and reticles) that help create a powerful visual inspection system. Thanks to Mr. Indrigo we have a clearer focus on the topic.

PCA & ADE on the ABCs of Packaging

Tony Castellano (PCA) & Mike Marino (ADE)
discuss flexible packaging.
Our most recent visitors, Tony Castellano of Elwood PCA & Mike Marino of ADE, Inc., came in to discuss ESD protective packaging and other options related to storing and protecting sensitive devices. PCA (Packaging Corporation of America) and ADE are providers of packaging solutions for the industrial and consumer markets.

Castellano and Marino displayed a myriad of packaging options for static-sensitive devices and explained the importance of using the right material for categories like conductive/dissipative, anti-static shielding, anti-static, insulative, EMC, and environmental. They further expounded on that by detailing other attributes to consider such as chemical transfer, strength, water/moisture vapor transmission, testability, and other characteristics. By the time our visitors were done we felt they had wrapped up the subject in a neat little package.

In the coming weeks we have many more in-house training sessions scheduled. We’ll be better educating ourselves about all of the topics that are important to you (soldering, cleanroom, industrial printing, etc.) with the goal of becoming your number one solution-providing resource.

Please follow the appropriate links for information about our 3M static control solutions, Unitron stereo microscopes/visual inspection systems, and cleaning/assembly tools by Techspray & Plato. You can also give us a call at 800-966-6020 or contact us via email to place an order for those items or to get more info about PCA/ADE products.

For additional Q Source product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Hazard Communication: Everything You Need to Know – Guest Blog

by Danielle Gallo, Product Marketing Specialist, Brady North America

Hazard communication is one of the most important occupational safety standards as it ensures employees are made aware of the potentially hazardous chemicals and risks to which they may be exposed. With the extreme importance placed on hazard communication, understanding the changes associated with the harmonization of the United Nations' "Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals" is critical.

History of Hazard Communication & the Globally Harmonized System

OSHA's Hazard Communication Regulation (1910.1200) was initially developed in 1983 with the goal of providing employees with the "right to know" of the hazards of chemicals that they were working around. This regulation accomplished this by mandating that all chemical hazard labels be applied to chemical containers. In addition, Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) needed to be supplied for each chemical, and be accessible to employees. Employees also needed to be trained on how to identify hazards and how to work around the chemicals.

Almost every country around the globe has guidelines or regulations with similar objectives to OSHA's hazard communication regulation: To warn employees or anyone coming into contact with the chemical about the hazards present. However, every country had a different way of not only categorizing hazards, but the classification process and how the hazards were depicted.

Big Changes for Better Compliance

Many changes were made to the hazard communication standard, but there are a few key changes that are greatly affecting the way facilities will manage their labeling process.

Revised Criteria for Classification of Chemical Hazards
Every chemical in the United States (there are approximately 880,000 different hazardous chemicals used in the US) needs to be re-classified by the chemical manufacturer per the GHS standard. This re-classification helps with the United Nation’s goal of streamlining chemical hazards globally.

Specified Format for Safety Data Sheets
The MSDS is now referred to as a Safety Data Sheet (SDS) and has a new format. The new SDS has 16 specified sections to help streamline the information provided, in addition to making it faster and easier for employees to find the information they need. These new SDS's will need to be filed and available for employee use once they are made available by the chemical manufacturer.

Revised and Standardized Labeling Requirements
Each primary container's chemical label must appear in the GHS format. This new format will still include the chemical name and manufacturer information, but also requires four new elements: a signal word, hazard pictograms, hazardous statements, and precautionary statements.

Secondary containers still need to be labeled per the employer’s hazard communication plan, with the label identifying the hazardous chemical and its appropriate hazard warnings (words, pictures, symbols or a combination). Secondary container labels need to provide employees with the specific information regarding the physical and health hazards.

Requirements for Employee Training: Labels, Safety Data Sheets
Due to the significant changes taking place, it is crucial that employees are fully trained on the changes made and how to read and identify chemical labels and hazard information.

There is an initial training requirement for employees. This training needs to cover the changes to the chemical label and SDS formats, understanding of new headings and the sequence of the SDS information, and an understanding of the standardized label elements (which includes the pictograms, signal words, and hazard and precautionary statements).

Even common worksite chemicals like Benzene, Toluene, or Xylene will have different information displayed on its chemical label and SDS than what employees are currently used to seeing.

OSHA's requirement for annual training on hazard communication has not changed and is still included in the changes to the regulation. As hazard communication continues to be one of the top cited OSHA regulations, it is essential to ensure staff and facilities are completely up-to-date with the changes in the regulation and the effect it will have on the workplace.

Timeline of Critical Compliance Dates
With the significant change made to the 29 CFR 1910.1200 regulation, OSHA has also provided deadlines for mandatory implementation dates.
December 1, 2013: By this date, every single US employee covered under the regulation needs to be initially trained on the changes to the regulation, specifically covering the overview of the changes to the regulation, the changes to SDS, and the changes to the hazard chemical label (focusing on understanding of the pictograms, signal word, hazard statements and precautionary statements).
June 1, 2015: All chemical manufacturers need to have re-classified their chemicals, updated the chemical label formats to the GHS format, and updated the chemical's SDS.
December 2015: All chemical distributors need to ensure that any product they are distributing has all of the updated information.
June 1, 2016: The final date for full compliance.

Q Source would like to thank our guest blogger, Danielle Gallo, from Brady Corporation. Thank you very much for your contribution to The Q Source Resource.

For additional Q Source product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.