Electronic – Reflow at home or solder manually


I'm considering doing DIY SMT Reflow for production of my Super OSD project.

An overview of the component count:

  • Resistors: ~50 x 0603; precision 0.1% resistors as well as 1% and 5% components
  • Capacitors: 17 x 0603, 2 x 0805, 1 x 1206 (all ceramics), 2 x EIA-3216 (tantalums.)
  • Inductors: 1 SDR-0604 package
  • Chips: SOIC-8 (EEPROM), SOIC-28, TQFP-44, some SOT-23 (temp sensor + TL431.)
  • Transistors: 3 x SOT-23 (2 x N-ch mosfet, 1 x NPN)
  • Diodes: 2 x SOT-23, 2 x SOD-323
  • Misc: polyfuse 0805 x 1, LED 0603 x 1

As can be seen this going to be a monster to solder manually so I was thinking of doing DIY toaster oven reflow. Would this be suitable? Are there any pitfalls I need to be aware of?

Otherwise I'm going to have to solder them up myself but I see it being a real problem with almost 80 tiny components per board.

Best Answer

If you can get hold of a dissecting scope and some decent tweezers, you could probably solder all those parts in about 2 hours. I've done a similar board with around 125 components in about 3 hours.

Here's my setup.

microscope on dining room table

This isn't to say that you shouldn't use an oven-- I haven't tried that; it might be better. Seems a little bit like all your eggs in one basket, but I guess you could always rework parts in either case.