Note! - The images used in the picture links were made for the original X1W-2. While they do not show the SMD devices and board used for this kit, they do demonstrate the correct techniques for mounting them.
Soldering a SMD to a PC board is not as difficult as it might seem. Follow these steps, and you will have a neat, professional looking job when done.
Although not absolutely necessary, it is highly encouraged that you secure and use a lit magnifier
to use during the placement and soldering of the SMDs. Click on the camera icon to see what a lit
magnifier looks like.
There are three SMDs to be mounted on the PC board, U9, U11 and optionally U2. Detailed instructions will be given for U11. Use the same procedure to complete the remaining SMDs. Note that the SMD mounting pictures are generic and are not of this kit.
First, you must identify pin one. One or more of the following identifies pin one:
♦ Dot lasered or stamped on the SMD in one corner
♦ Notch on the end
♦ Beveled edge or beveled edge with a groove at pin one
When installing, orient the IC on the board with pin one to the trace with the dot beside it. The tool of
choice to do this is a pair of tweezers. If your hands are not that steady (as mine are), try using a
jeweler’s screwdriver or toothpick. Fingers are too big, and the chip may have a tendency to stick to
your finger, making placement difficult. The chips are very light and can easily be moved or catapulted
off to who-knows-where. Take your time and be patient.
If you find it difficult to position the chip because it keeps "falling off", you may find it necessary to take some solder-wick and clean the traces on which the SMD sits. During the manufacturing phase that tins the board, the solder may be thick enough that round edges have formed on the edge of the pattern. This is normal. By cleaning the pad with solder wick, it will become flat and placement of the part will be much easier.
Warning! - Do NOT use tape (cellophane or otherwise) to help secure the chip to the board during soldering. Many people are not aware of this, but the act of pulling a small piece of tape out of the dispenser generates around 400 to 500 volts of static electricity. Cellophane tape can and will damage the IC. Even though the chip may work, it becomes what is known as the "walking dead". In a year or so, it will mysteriously stop working. Don't take the chance!
|U11 - DS2480B, 1-Wire®/TTL converter. U11 is located in the lower left-hand quadrant of the board to the right of the DB9-F footprint. Note that pin one is oriented towards the bottom of the board.|
In the following, be careful NOT to touch the lead from the SMD with the tip of the iron.
With the tip of the iron, heat one of the corner traces where the SMD sits. Carefully feed a
small amount of 0.015 diameter solder to the tip of the iron. Capillary action should cause
the solder to flow along the trace and to the lead of the SMD. Use as little solder as possible.
Remove the iron and allow to cool.
|Solder one of the corner pins to the PC board|
If all goes well, the SMD should not have moved and one of the corner leads should now be securely soldered to the board. Using a magnifier, carefully inspect the SMD chip for alignment. This will be your last chance to fix anything easily. If the chip is misaligned or improperly oriented, re-heat the trace (again, NOT the lead) with the iron and slide the chip off the pad. Clean the pad with some solder wick, and begin again.
|Alignment of chip looks good.|
Assuming alignment and orientation is good, in like manner, solder the remaining leads of the SMD.
|Solder remaining pins using the same capillary action as before.|
Check the soldering with a magnifier for solder-bridges, cold solder joints, and too much solder. If anything looks suspicious, use solder wick to clean the connection, and then re-solder.
If everything looks good, you're done. Congratulations!
In like manner, install U9.
|U9 - DS2438, A/D converter for the Barometric pressure sensor. U9 is in the lower left-hand quadrant of the board, near the board edge. Note that the notch or pin one is oriented down towards the edge of the board.|
Install U2 only if you will be using the EMP/rain gauge interface on THIS board.
|I will be connecting the rain gauge and EMP sensor to this board. If this is not correct, then skip the next step and go on to the next page.|
|U2 - DS2423. This is a six pin device. U2 is located just above the TAPR logo in the center of the board.|
If you discover that the chip has been installed with the wrong orientation or is the wrong chip altogether, Use some small solder-wick and remove as much solder as possible from both leaded sides of the chip. Avoid using excessive heat. After wicking away most of the solder, you should be able to lift one side of the SMD free from the board by applying heat to the leads and lifting gently. Be careful not to lift the solder pads from the PC board. Repeat for the remaining side.
If you are unable to remove the chip using solder-wick and gentle persuasion, the following procedure can be used. It works well and does not stress the PC board. Note: If the chip has not failed, and is in the wrong place, DO NOT use this procedure. You will have to make the prior procedure work.
|Using a sharp pair of small cutters or something similar, clip the SMD leads as close to the body of the chip as possible. The body of the chip can now be removed easily.|
|Use solder-wick to remove the pins and solder from the PC board.|