OK International - Increase your process control and lower cost of ownership.

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By Ed Zamborsky, OK International

With consumers constantly looking for lower prices on their technology products and manufacturers trying to squeak out higher margins from their production lines, the need for process control and lower overhead costs have become even more important. One sector that is often overlooked is the hand soldering area of the factory. Many factories have been struggling with antiquated soldering systems for years. In some cases they are trying to make their investment in stations last much longer than they were designed for, or they are falsely trying to recoup their original investment - all at the cost of higher operating expenses or even worse, reduced operator thru-put.

Frequently, when I am invited to a factory for a soldering system audit, I see many outdated stations that are being used improperly or by untrained operators. This misuse typically manifests itself with stations that are set to their maximum temperature, as the operators make every effort to increase thru-put, but without understanding the board and component damage that they may be causing. It is during these visits that I point out the need for simple but high performance soldering systems.

So, what makes a soldering system simple but still high performance? One of the most important features of a soldering system is transparent to the operator, it is the heat delivery system. For the ultimate performance you need to standardize on a direct power soldering system. Direct power, or SmartHeat®, soldering irons respond precisely to the varying power demands across the circuit board, always providing the correct temperature to solder the components without ever overheating them and in the shortest time possible...

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