Author Topic: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?  (Read 3574 times)

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Offline Rooster Cogburn

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Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« on: May 20, 2018, 04:23:06 pm »
I recently decided to upgrade the soldering mat I've been using for a while to an ESD safe mat with a ground clamp. Most of the usual European stores have very high prices and sell in quantities / sizes that are not very practical for me. I found a 50x40cm mat on AliExpress, exactly the right size for my workspace. Once I got it I quickly found out that the advertised 380C temperature resistance is a lie and the material actually melts at <200C, making it unsuitable for any soldering or hot air rework. Seller did not respond to my dispute etc., let's hope I get my money back from AliExpress.

Not sure where to buy a replacement, though. Like so often, it seems many sellers are selling the exact same product, probably nobody bothered to check that the 380C temperature resistance is actually true. Can anybody recommend a seller on AliExpress, eBay, Banggood etc. where I can get a small-ish ESD mat that's actually heat resistant without spending a fortune? Bonus points if you have the equipment to verify that the ESD-safe part actually works as well :)
 

Offline b_force

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2018, 09:08:18 pm »
I never get the whole fuzz about ESD mats, unless you're doing big or expensive production.

ESD is just static energy. So if you touch your desk frame or something else before you start soldering, that will be just fine.
And still, if you just ground yourself, there is not really a need for an ESD mat.
The snobs will tell otherwise I am sure (heated debate coming up)
"If you can't explain it simply (or at all), you don't understand it well enough." A. Einstein

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Offline pylo

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2018, 09:18:32 pm »
I never get the whole fuzz about ESD mats, unless you're doing big or expensive production.

ESD is just static energy. So if you touch your desk frame or something else before you start soldering, that will be just fine.
And still, if you just ground yourself, there is not really a need for an ESD mat.
The snobs will tell otherwise I am sure (heated debate coming up)

And what if both you and your circuit are currently charged up with static energy? Then touching your desk-frame will be exactly what creates the problem, because then you and your board won't be at the same potential anymore. Next time you touch the circuit, boom.

The key to ESD control is not that you are discharged, but that everything is at the same potential. This is where the ESD mat comes into play. If your circuit lays on it, and you are also connected to it, then it is guaranteed that both you and the circuit are approximately at the same potential, hence no problems.
« Last Edit: May 20, 2018, 09:20:52 pm by pylo »
 

Offline b_force

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2018, 09:29:58 pm »
I never get the whole fuzz about ESD mats, unless you're doing big or expensive production.

ESD is just static energy. So if you touch your desk frame or something else before you start soldering, that will be just fine.
And still, if you just ground yourself, there is not really a need for an ESD mat.
The snobs will tell otherwise I am sure (heated debate coming up)

And what if both you and your circuit are currently charged up with static energy? Then touching your desk-frame will be exactly what creates the problem, because then you and your board won't be at the same potential anymore. Next time you touch the circuit, boom.

The key to ESD control is not that you are discharged, but that everything is at the same potential. This is where the ESD mat comes into play. If your circuit lays on it, and you are also connected to it, then it is guaranteed that both you and the circuit are approximately at the same potential, hence no problems.
Yes, what if?
I always ask some basic high school question to think about WHEN objects are getting charged.
That's only when they build up energy by friction etc
And BOOM never happens, maybe a quick snap,

Like I said before, I totally agree with your arguments if you have a production line with high sensitive components.
For home-hobbyist work? No, no so much at all.
In all the many years I have been working with (mostly) SMD parts, ucontrollers, DSPs and all that kind of stuff, these problems happened exactly ZERO times.
At work it went wrong a few times with our interns.
When? Well cold weather (= dry air) and wearing a woolen sweater is asking for trouble.

Sorry in my opinion it's heavily overrated. 
"If you can't explain it simply (or at all), you don't understand it well enough." A. Einstein

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Offline Rooster Cogburn

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2018, 09:45:25 pm »
If you want to discuss the merits of ESD mats, please start your own thread, I just want to know where to cheaply buy a heat resistant one :)
 
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Offline b_force

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2018, 09:49:41 pm »
If you want to discuss the merits of ESD mats, please start your own thread, I just want to know where to cheaply buy a heat resistant one :)
I don't necessarily want to discuss it, so no new thread needed for me.
Just giving some advice on the subject.  :) ;)
"If you can't explain it simply (or at all), you don't understand it well enough." A. Einstein

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Offline rdl

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2018, 12:02:53 am »
I have seen the ebay seller canvu0_0 recommended many times. I'm pretty sure the next time I need a mat, I will buy from them.


https://www.ebay.com/str/canvu00/
 

Offline Rooster Cogburn

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2018, 08:32:15 am »
I am using these silicon mats:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Heat-resistant-Insulation-Pad-Soldering-Mat-Silicone-Heat-Gun-BGA-Soldering-Station-Repair-Tools-Maintenance-Platform/32830403250.html
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Heat-Insulation-Pad-Silicone-Mat-High-Temperature-Maintenance-BGA-Workbench-Welding-Phone-Repair-Anti-static-Magnetic/32842654723.html

It resisting well the attaks of my soldering iron and utility knife.

Those are not ESD mats, that's what I'm using right now and trying to replace.

I have seen the ebay seller canvu0_0 recommended many times. I'm pretty sure the next time I need a mat, I will buy from them.


https://www.ebay.com/str/canvu00/

Seems like they do not ship to Germany (or at least don't list a price). Also quite pricey, I'm kinda looking for the Chinese option :/
 

Offline RoGeorge

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2018, 09:00:10 am »
Once I got it I quickly found out that the advertised 380C temperature resistance is a lie and the material actually melts at <200C, making it unsuitable for any soldering or hot air rework...
probably nobody bothered to check that the 380C temperature resistance is actually true.

I bought mine from AliExpress, and it can easily withstand 200*C (tested with a blob of melted solder) with no marks or discoloration remaining afterwards on the mat. There are 2 main types of mats: rubber based, and plastic based. The rubber ones should have no problem at 200*C. The plastic ones will melt. It's easy to identify the rubber ones from the AliExpress pictures, and if what you receive is not like in the picture, than you can open dispute and win. Here's my ESD rubber mat, with some macro pics:

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/reviews/anti-static-mat-smell/

Anyway, even if the mat can withstand the hot air temperature, it will transmit a lot of heat to the workbench table. For hot air rework, look for a silicone pad to put underneath the PCB. I have one made from this white translucent silicone, it is about 5-6 mm thick, and will help a lot for hot air rework if you don't use a preheater. It is a very good thermal insulator, so the other side of the PCB will keep the temperature instead of loosing heat to the workbench. Of course, silicone is not ESD safe, but being an excellent electrical insulator, too, the charges won't flow, so it is not prone at all to burn chips by ESD.

I can not point to a specific seller, because I bought both some time ago, and the products on AliExpress are famous for not being the same from one shipping to another.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2018, 09:03:38 am by RoGeorge »
 

Offline Rooster Cogburn

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2018, 10:09:44 am »
I bought mine from AliExpress, and it can easily withstand 200*C (tested with a blob of melted solder) with no marks or discoloration remaining afterwards on the mat. There are 2 main types of mats: rubber based, and plastic based. The rubber ones should have no problem at 200*C. The plastic ones will melt. It's easy to identify the rubber ones from the AliExpress pictures, and if what you receive is not like in the picture, than you can open dispute and win. Here's my ESD rubber mat, with some macro pics:

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/reviews/anti-static-mat-smell/

Anyway, even if the mat can withstand the hot air temperature, it will transmit a lot of heat to the workbench table. For hot air rework, look for a silicone pad to put underneath the PCB. I have one made from this white translucent silicone, it is about 5-6 mm thick, and will help a lot for hot air rework if you don't use a preheater. It is a very good thermal insulator, so the other side of the PCB will keep the temperature instead of loosing heat to the workbench. Of course, silicone is not ESD safe, but being an excellent electrical insulator, too, the charges won't flow, so it is not prone at all to burn chips by ESD.

I can not point to a specific seller, because I bought both some time ago, and the products on AliExpress are famous for not being the same from one shipping to another.

Interesting, thanks! The problem I have is that basically all ESD mats are described as '380C & 2mm'. Your is, mine is. Mine looks exactly as advertised and pretty much like yours (apart from the color difference) but it melts like butter even with the iron set to 200C. So I'm not sure how you can easily tell the difference since the description is the same and mine pretty much looks like yours.

I currently have a silicone pad like you. It's durable and heat resistant and I can blast 480C hot air at it all day long and neither the mat nor the table below show any signs of wear. Since those are dirt cheap I was hoping to buy a slightly larger one that is also conductive and has a ground point. The kind of mats sold by reputable vendors like RS, Conrad, etc. have very high m^2 prices.
 

Offline RoGeorge

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2018, 10:42:05 am »
The rubber based ones should rather directly go black and change to carbon without melting.





It seems like you received a Vinyl based mat instead of rubber based one:




Offline Rooster Cogburn

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #12 on: May 21, 2018, 11:18:54 am »
The rubber based ones should rather directly go black and change to carbon without melting.ps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9c7kTF4cF6w]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9c7kTF4cF6w[/url]

But you said you can easily tell from the pictures on AliExpress. How does that help me identify the type of mat from a product picture? It's not like they post a video of the mat being burned. The descriptions are useless since they all claim heat resistance.
 

Offline RoGeorge

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2018, 11:57:11 am »
Depending on the AliExpress pictures, some of them will have a close-up/macro shot where the layers can be seen, colored surface is matte (not glossy) and without 3D texture, also they specify that is rubber based and does not melt with solder, chemical resistant, _piercing_resistant_ (Vinyl based can be pierced easily, rubber, almost impossible to pierce/stab with sharp probes).

When I searched for mine I looked for a seller that specified the most of those and have some kind of datasheet with properties. The weight/square meter is a good indicator, also the price. If you look at the lowest prices, you will notice that there are 2 categories of cost/sqare meter. The Vinyl was 30-50 less expensive than rubber, don't remember exactly, but it was a big step in prices for the same size of mats.

Of course, with AliExpress, "Life is was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get."



 ^-^



You are correct, it might not be easy to identify looking only at the pics. I still have the order history in my AliExpress account. The link is now broken, but the shop is still there, and it is still selling soldering equipment and consumables. I don't know if they still sell that product, and don't know how they are now, but when I ordered they were 5 stars with me. This is the shop: https://www.aliexpress.com/store/group/Other/809293_257779291.html

A copy/paste from the description at that moment in time:
Quote
   1x Anti-static ESD High Temperature Resistance Mat 60cm x 100cm + Ground Wire + ESD Wrist
Description:

    100% brand new
    Type :Anti-static Mat
    60cm x 100cm
    Thickness: 2mm
    Weight: 1850grams / 1.85kg
    Temp resistance: 380c   

 
The Anti-static Mat is acid resistant , alkali-resistant , anti chemical flux , wear resistant ,
easyclean. It can be applied to matting desktop , line working mesa and so on , achieves the effect of static electricity protective, avoid devices damaged
Package inside:
1 x Anti-static Mat
1x Ground Wire
1 x ESD Wrist
And the transaction screenshot:
« Last Edit: May 21, 2018, 12:35:05 pm by RoGeorge »
 

Offline Rooster Cogburn

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2018, 01:51:01 pm »
Thanks, this is the one I bought:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Grounding-500-400-2mm-ESD-mat-Anti-static-mat-Antistatic-blanket-ESD-table-mat-for-BGA/32813794725.html

I guess in the last picture it looks glossy and hence once could deduct it's plastic. Probably should've bought a product with more reviews as well.

I can't imagine this false advertisement works out for them. I imagine most people buying these mats will use soldering irons and hot air with them and will be quite displeased when they immediately melt all over their iron tip or on the bottom of their PCB etc. and file a claim.

Most of the other mats I find have the exact same description and its hard to tell from the pictures if they're going to be any different:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Free-shipping-500-400-2mm-ESD-mat-Anti-static-mat-Antistatic-blanket-ESD-table-mat-for/32613981868.html
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Free-shipping-600-500-2mm-ESD-mat-Anti-static-mat-Antistatic-blanket-ESD-table-mat-for/32693211155.html

Maybe it's worth contacting the seller, but I suspect many of them don't even know what they're selling.
 

Offline RoGeorge

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #15 on: May 21, 2018, 07:23:11 pm »
The first link (blue one) is definitely something else:
- notice the thickness of the blue and the black layers in the second pic, the blue layer is thicker than the black layer, not good. Look at my pictures, the green layer is much thinner than the black one
- in the third pic, the corners and margins curl upwards for all the 4 edges, most probably not rubber. Rubber mats are heavy and flexible, so they tend to lay flat under their own weight

In the other 2 links, with the green mats, the material looks exactly like mine. If I were you I'll choose the seller with more feedback and more pictures, just to be sure.

Offline Rooster Cogburn

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #16 on: May 30, 2018, 10:12:56 pm »
Hey, completely forgot to reply! :) Thanks for all your help, I just don't know what I should've looked for, it seems. I got a refund from AliExpress and ordered one of the mats looking like yours from a seller/item with more feedback. If this one doesn't work out I'll have to bite the bullet and buy a pricier one from a local source, but fingers crossed! For to keep the first one, I guess I can use it a second layer to isolate my table better from the heat or make some shelf space ESD safe ;)
 

Offline TuxKey

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #17 on: June 11, 2018, 03:39:05 pm »
Hi Rooster, And everyone else..

A few months ago i bought myself an affordable heat resistant ESD mat from banggood..here's the link
https://www.banggood.com/Green-Desktop-Anti-Static-ESD-Grouding-Mat-50x60cm-For-Electronics-Repair-p-976515.html?rmmds=myorder&cur_warehouse=CN

I payed approximately €15,00 for it that's arround $18.
Like Rooster i tried everything to get the smell out..it's permanent storage was outside hanging from my balcony railing and once every couple of days baking in the sun i would turn it towards the sun and rotate so every side got an ample amount of UV.. then came the first soapy water with vinegar soaking session.. then outside again for a few weeks.
Then i tried to go pro on the mat.. searching how to remove rubber smells i stumbled on a mixture of soda+vinegar+menthol oil and i added some clothing soap for good measure..left it over night turning it  every few hours in a large bucket...then left it outside in the sun to dry aka bake a bit..
And the smell is still there.. it's so strong that if you leave it in a decent size room the whole room smells of sum chemical rubber ..not just rubber like bicycle tires but more chemical...
Besides the smell how do i know if it works ?? it is somewhat burn prooof i hit it with my iron on 300C and beside sum small marks it's ok..
Question is does it work????   

using my Lidl multimeter and brymen probes i see that the green side measures 0 ohms no matter what i do with my probes..
The black rubber side is a different story...when i try to puncture the black rubber side with my leads i have to keep them there for a while before i measure something fluctuating so i think it's conductive ?? But when i lay my probes flat on the mat dark side giving the probes a bit more service area i get a better reading.. if i rub them a bit it jumps to 14ohm and if i keep them 1cm apart flat i measure between 2 to 3 ohms it jumps around sum times get between 12 to 16ohm..

looking around i realized i'm not using the correct tool to measure the resistance..
buying a tool to do so can be rather expensive there are sum cheaper tools still for one time use can be a bit  waist full.
This tool does seem like it  could measure resistance. (used tinyurl because the aliexpress links was 514 characters )
https://tinyurl.com/yaqusbph

i contacted Banggod and they offered me €8 in return so i waisted €7 not a big deal..
big question i cant seem to get answered is do i need to fork out €67 for a Elme 157Kit 60*90cm from tme.eu
https://www.tme.eu/en/details/as-b60x90bg/esd-workstations/elme/157kit-6090-beige/

Mat-to-earth resistance    5...500MΩ    
Ground cord resistance    1MΩ    
Ground cord length    3m    
Resistance to    most of oils, most of chemical compounds    
Max ambient temperature    440°C    
Discharge time    <34 ms (5000V-50V), <9 ms (5000V-500V)    
Surface resistance    5...500MΩ    
Length of the lengthen coiled cord    1.8m    
Resistance of the coiled cord    1MΩ


i tried to answer the question myself but it's rather hard to do so.. as soon as you dive in to ESD it's a whole world in it self..
one could argue that if you are like me just doing sum practice soldering sum mechanical keyboard DIY assembly sum laptop cleaning perhaps a pc build here and there a esd mat might be overkill ?? or is it ??

Does the cheap solution help ?? or is it save security not really helping ??
please advice... anyone..
 

Offline TuxKey

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #18 on: June 14, 2018, 05:35:51 pm »
can anyone reply to the simple question do the cheap Banggood / Aliexpress green mats actually work?

see here the so called measurements being done with a multi-meter (i realize this is not the correct tool for the job)..

https://youtu.be/Y2eF0GmDqFQ

i'm trying to find out if i should fork out €55 for a mat or keep this cheap one i got for €15.. as a casual hobbyist.. 
 

Offline RoGeorge

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #19 on: June 15, 2018, 06:35:24 am »
The green side should be insulator (infinite electrical resistance), the black side should be slightly conductive.

You don't need to buy extra measuring instruments to test it. Your test with the LIDL multimeter is enough, this is how it should be.

The mat you already have is just fine. Ground the mat with the provided wire, and lay it on the bench with the green (insulator) side up.
When working with ESD sensitive parts, you need to wear a grounded ESD wrist band, too.
 
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Offline exe

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #20 on: June 15, 2018, 07:42:15 am »
Concerning silicon pads, I have one. It produces hell a lot of "ESD spark noise" when I remove it from the table. So, it builds up charge or something. I heard many similar reports. So, I'm not sure it is really suitable for electronics. Could someone clarify this?
 

Offline TuxKey

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #21 on: June 15, 2018, 11:38:09 am »
@RoGeorge thanks mate.. appreciate it.. i would much rather keep the money for a nice spare soldering iron when i need one..
Found a nice cheap T12 clone.. for just €23 only problem is that i would need to replace the dc jack from 5.5*2.1 to a 5.5*.25

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/-/32857152188.html?spm=a2g0s.8937460.0.0.22182e0eVjkYiI

i already found the correct plugs on aliExpress.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/2-Pcs-Copper-5-5mm-2-5mm-DC-Plug-2-5-Power-Socket-Jack/1328621445.html?spm=a2g0s.8937460.0.0.22182e0eVjkYiI

only problem is that the jack needed is not that cheap.. ahha still much cheaper then a second ESD mat..
Thanks again.
 

Offline RoGeorge

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #22 on: June 15, 2018, 03:48:36 pm »
Found a nice cheap T12 clone.. for just €23 only problem is that i would need to replace the dc jack from 5.5*2.1 to a 5.5*.25

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/-/32857152188.html?spm=a2g0s.8937460.0.0.22182e0eVjkYiI

i already found the correct plugs on aliExpress.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/2-Pcs-Copper-5-5mm-2-5mm-DC-Plug-2-5-Power-Socket-Jack/1328621445.html?spm=a2g0s.8937460.0.0.22182e0eVjkYiI

only problem is that the jack needed is not that cheap.. ahha still much cheaper then a second ESD mat..
Thanks again.

Why do you want to change the DC connector?

Offline Haggis McHaggis

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Re: Recommendation for ESD mat supplier on AliExpress?
« Reply #23 on: April 30, 2019, 04:35:09 pm »
Does anyone found a good/cheap ESD mat on Aliexpress in the meantime?
 


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