Part 1 in a series on controlling a toaster oven with a PICAXE. #PICAXE #Engineering
Reflow soldering is not as complex as it first appears. Essentially there are only four steps: first, apply solder paste to the PCB pads; second, place the components on the pads; third, heat the PCB and components to the required temperature for the solder paste to liquify and flow over the pads and the component connection points; and finally, allow the assembly to cool. Controlling the rate of heating and, to a lesser extent, the rate of cooling is the key to getting good solder joints and not damaging components. That process can be managed with a simple toaster oven and a microcontroller. This two-part article will provide a complete guide to creating and using such a system...and doing so at a relatively low cost.