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Solved reflow help

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Crawford

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i im kind of starting my own wee business of repairing xboxs

im looking to buy a reflow station and ive decided on what one im buying
i would just like to know what sort of temperatures people run theres at and how long for?
also people seem to be using a heat pad like a griddle but im just wondering is there any other way that you could keep the bottom of the board warm without buying a griddle?

all info is greatly appreciated
 
kanyun

kanyun

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i im kind of starting my own wee business of repairing xboxs

im looking to buy a reflow station and ive decided on what one im buying
i would just like to know what sort of temperatures people run theres at and how long for?
also people seem to be using a heat pad like a griddle but im just wondering is there any other way that you could keep the bottom of the board warm without buying a griddle?

all info is greatly appreciated

Any Aoyue station with a digital temperature readout should suffice for you. You'll also need to have a 4141 sized nozzle for it at least. Ideally you should have a separate nozzle for each chip (southbridge, HANA, GPU, CPU, RAM) but the 4141 is the one you'll use most often and is the size you'll need for the GPU. You can use this nozzle for all the chips if you use heat shields to protect capacitors and other surface components, but for best results you'll want a different nozzle for each chip.

I personally have the Aoyue 852a++ smd station and it works wonderfully for me. I only got this over the Aoyue 968 because I got a good deal on it and I didn't really NEED the soldering iron that the 968 comes with (which is the only difference between the two).

You may want to invest in a reballing jig if you're looking to do reballs as well. And although a BGA rework station is about a million times more expensive than an SMD station, they are better and usually have a preheater built in. This late in the Xbox 360 era, though, I can't see that investment being worth it.

A preheater is definitely a requirement in this business. Localized thermal expansion can and WILL warp the board, often times beyond repair. At the very least you'll want a Presto griddle, you can get them for 20 bucks at Walmart. But make sure your preheater is providing at least 75% of the heat for the reflow, this is important. I also strongly recommend either buying a special brace for the Xbox board or drilling holes in your griddle to bolt the board down. Bolting it down will also prevent flexing/warping and is strongly recommended. SRS Soldering has one that is specially made for the 360 motherboard, but will set you back 39 dollars or something like that. And make sure the board is suspended off the preheater so the plastic nubs on the bottom don't melt.

Also I strongly recommend you use flux. Flux will remove oxidation from the solder joints and ensure the solder is clean, soft and ready to be properly reflowed. I use Kester 951 no clean flux, its pretty cheap on ebay. There are probably better alternatives for more money, but its up to you. A dry reflow is never recommended and often times if it dies after a dry reflow, it will need a full reball.

Next thing I definitely think is a requirement are thermocouplets. These are very accurate temperature sensors (if you don't know already) that will make sure you are reaching your target temperature and not exceeding it by too much. Too low of a temperature will lead to a short lived reflow, too high of a temperature will lead to bridged solder and the need for a full reball (or a whole new GPU). The Aoyue will show you a temperature readout from its own thermocouple located in the heating element, but this will be very far from the actual temperature of the surface of the board. I use thermocouples and an infrared thermometer to monitor temperatures when I'm reflowing. Also keep in mind that all reworking stations will put out different amounts of heat, so your Aoyue could be very much different than mine, even if they're the same model, hence the need for your own temperature monitoring device. You'll want to get some heat resistant tape (either aluminum tape or Kapton tape) to hold the thermocouple down. You may also want to use this tape to make heat shields if you're using the same 4141 nozzle for all the chips, so you don't blow capacitors. Ive also seen this tape used to tape over the resistors around the GPU and other chips to make sure they don't blow off, but if you follow what I've written next, you shouldn't need to do that.

Don't turn the air flow up too high on the reworking station or you will end up blowing off surface components around the chips like resistors. These are difficult to solder back on, if you can even find them when they blow off. The air flow readings are different for different stations, so look up what a safe air flow reading is for the station you get. When working at higher temperatures, you want the air flow to be sort of high to expel heat from the heating element, if the air flow is too low, the heating element can be damaged. So in short, not too much air flow, but not too little either.

As for how long you should hold certain temperatures, that's up to you. You'll be able to develop your own reflow profile pretty quickly when you begin. Generally speaking you'll want to preheat the board to 75% of the max temperature first, so between 130 and 160 degrees C. Then gradually (slow!) step up your rework station until your thermocouple on the board reaches its target temperature of 220-240 C, and then hold that temperature for a few minutes, then drop the temperature as rapidly as the machine allows. You want a gradual heating, and an instant cooling.

I may have forgotten some things, in fact I'm sure I did. I'll post them below if I think of them. Ask any questions if you have them!

Good luck!

-------------------------------

EDIT: Also you will have to buy or make a stand to hold the heat wand from the station. It has to be held still. There are a bunch of tutorials on this all over the internet, just depends on your preference.

One more thing, chances are if the station you're ordering is a decent brand, it will ship with a screw in the bottom of it. This screw holds the pump in place so it doesn't get damaged while shipping and MUST be removed before use. Neglecting to remove it can do one of two things:
-Make your station hella loud, annoying, and vibrate more than it should
-Break your station

One last thing that I just remembered. You will want your reworking station to be on a different platform than your preheater and Xbox board. This is because the station vibrates and these vibrations *could* end up moving the Xbox board enough to bridge the solder balls while they are liquefied. I've never heard of anyone actually being able to prove this, but sounds reasonable enough doesn't it? Not worth the chance in my opinion.

EDIT one more time, I see you're from the UK, ignore my estimated prices that are in US dollars lol.
 
KraZz3D xD

Crawford

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thanks alot for that, really good help and i will take it all into account
im just needing the thermocouple and the griddle and also the nozzle but i will test doing the reflow on a spare xbox i have so i dont mess up an xbox im wanting to use
but thanks very very much for all that info
 
kanyun

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No problem. Good luck with it and you can definitely PM me if you have any questions or anything. There are a lot of people over at xbox-experts who know their stuff too.
 
KraZz3D xD

Crawford

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ok will do, ill let you know how i get on aswell
just checking out griddles on Amazon at the minute and think i have seen the one im going to go for once i have the money then ill be sorted :smile:
but ill defo let you know how im doing and if i need any help ill message you
thanks :smile:
 
KraZz3D xD

Crawford

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just a question would you drill holes in your griddle and put screws and nuts through the griddle to hold the board tight or would you just rest the screws ontop of the griddle and rest the board ontop of them?
 
kanyun

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just a question would you drill holes in your griddle and put screws and nuts through the griddle to hold the board tight or would you just rest the screws ontop of the griddle and rest the board ontop of them?
Ideally you want the board bolted down tight to prevent flexing, either in a premade brace, or with bolts going through the griddle.
 
KraZz3D xD

Crawford

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i think ill just drill holes in the griddle place nuts over the holes so board is sitting just off the griddle
the size of griddle im getting is 27/27 i measured the board and its 27/27cm aswell so it should just fit
 
kanyun

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i think ill just drill holes in the griddle place nuts over the holes so board is sitting just off the griddle
the size of griddle im getting is 27/27 i measured the board and its 27/27cm aswell so it should just fit
oo yeah hopefully it'll do the job for you.
 
KraZz3D xD

Crawford

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yeah im hoping lol should be all set up for the weekend :smile:
 
kanyun

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Nice! If you have a test board, I'd practice on that just to get a feel for things.
 
KraZz3D xD

Crawford

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yeah i have a spare xbox that im going to use just so can get a bit of practice lol
 
suRb0_

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You will not get a proper Reflow on a griddle! preheating stage is really important u will need more power check out the T8280 IR standalone preheating table they go for decent price on ebay and work really well just as good as the preheaters on the Achi pro bga systems imo. good luck!
 
kanyun

kanyun

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You will not get a proper Reflow on a griddle! preheating stage is really important u will need more power check out the T8280 IR standalone preheating table they go for decent price on ebay and work really well just as good as the preheaters on the Achi pro bga systems imo. good luck!

Why would he need more power? The griddle just has to get the board up to like 160C max. And if he's using it exclusively for Xbox's he wouldn't need more than a griddle can provide.
 
suRb0_

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Really 160c on the presto ones? perhaps i was missing something o_O i started out with the DIY griddle method.
I tried both the $20 griddle and the bigger version as well, in my experience neither could get the board past 110c, but don't get me wrong it still works somewhat okish you will be able to fix 0102 and other cold solder joint errors no doubt about that, however don't be surprised when u start getting returns in just a couple of weeks =p ,
it happened to me..:rolleyes:
 
kanyun

kanyun

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Really 160c on the presto ones? perhaps i was missing something o_O i started out with the DIY griddle method.
I tried both the $20 griddle and the bigger version as well, in my experience neither could get the board past 110c, but don't get me wrong it still works somewhat okish you will be able to fix 0102 and other cold solder joint errors no doubt about that, however don't be surprised when u start getting returns in just a couple of weeks =p ,
it happened to me..:rolleyes:

Ahh, well I guess the heating elements can put out different amounts of heat, even on the same model griddle. Oh well, even 110 should be fine in my opinion if he has the board bolted down so as not to flex.
 
I Purple I

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I have an Aoyue 968 and T-8280. I use K-type thermocouples taped down with Kapton tape. I have the 4141, 3131 and 2828 nozzles ( I think those are the numbers for the GPU, CPU and SB). I also use Kester no clean 951 flux just like Canyonne. It has a long shelf life and works really well. Make sure you get nozzles for each individual chip because other wise your heat distribution will be off. Also, my 968 works for me but if I were to recommend a station, it would the X-Tronic 4040 Hot Air Rework Station. The 968 has been known to have eneven heating and from what I have heard the Xtronic is solid. I used a griddle for about a year and I thought it was too risky for repairs and since you are planning on doing a repair shop, it doesn't sound professional to say oh yeah I use a griddle to preheat the board. I recommend the T8280 as it is the most safe station you can buy for it's price which is about $190 shipped. Also make sure to get a stand as it is definitely just as important. Here are some links. Also check out cvxrepairforums and sra-solder.com for supplies. You can PM with any questions.


X Tronics Rework Station ($150+ shipping)
http://www.xconsoles.com/products/x-tronic-4040-digital-soldering-hot-air-rework-station.html

T-8280 IR Preheater ($190 free shipping)
http://puhuit.com/main/page_products_t8280_ir_preheating.html

Kapton Tape ($5.24 free shipping) ships from China
http://www.dealextreme.com/p/high-temperature-tape-20mm-200-c-5442

4141 Nozzle($23.00+shipping)
http://sra-solder.com/product.php/6641/54

Workstand for your nozzle($100.00+Shipping)
http://sra-solder.com/product.php/6378/0

Kester 951 ($4.00 free shipping)
http://www.ebay.com/itm/KESTER-951-...209?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1e62dbc271

Digital Thermometer w/ Ktype Thermocouples ($19.00 + shipping)
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-The...967?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4ab7506437

Total would be
$472.24 or 295.59 GBP or 371.86 Euros. These are calculated prices w/o shipping included.
 
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