Soldering SMD Chips to Adapter Boards

Soldering SMD Chips to Adapter Boards

For my N64 RGB Amp page, and more recently on my LM1881 Sync Stripper page, I solder a really quite small Surface Mount chip to an adapter board.

I usually get my adapter boards from eBay (I searched for SOP DIP8), but I notice that bitsbox now sell the too.

The first thing I do, is put a piece of double-sided tape down, and sticking the adapter board to it to stop it moving around.

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The dot in the bottom left corner shows where to put leg 1 of the chip.  This is linked to the hole in the top left – labelled 1 on my board, but it could be another dot.

 

Now I hold my soldering iron on a pad that the SMD chip will attach to, after a second or so I touch some solder onto the pad, you don’t want a lot on there.  I move the soldering iron back and forth along the pad to even out the solder and remove any excess.

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Here comes the chip now, leg 1 of the chip will be marked in someway, usually with a dot in the corner of the chip where leg 1 is.

I always start by holding it securely in place with some tweezers or by putting some pressure on the top, and then put my soldering iron on a corner leg, this heats up the solder underneath it and then i gently push the leg down into the solder.  Try and keep it lined up, but don’t worry if it goes a bit wonky.

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I’ve soldered the top right leg, and you can see I didn’t do a great job at keeping it straight – look at the legs going down the left side.

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Either heat up the single leg and adjust the chip, or (and this is what I did this time), I turned the adapter board around to make it easier for me to solder, I slightly twisted the chip so it lined up with the pads again and then soldered the opposite corners leg.

Once I was happy it was straight enough, I solder all the legs on one side in place.  I use the soldering iron to push the leg into the solder (hold it there for a bit to heat it up), then drag the soldering iron away from the leg and then back to and onto the leg.  This is without adding any extra solder to the iron etc.

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