Author Topic: Looking for ~15mm (Inside Diameter Cap for) Heat Gun Hot Air Nozzle  (Read 442 times)

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Offline Electro Fan

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I'm looking for hot air nozzles that would be suitable for SMD component removal.  My current hot air gun which I bought primarily for shrinking tubing has a tapered nozzle diameter that goes from about 14.85mm to 15.07mm, so something that has an inside diameter cap of about 15mm would probably work.  Other than the ~15mm inside diameter cap whatever outlet nozzle shape/size might help focus the hot air would be good....

The background on this is that I recently purchased a FR-301 and that has turned out to great for removing through hole components of various sizes and shapes.  One of the tips I have is a N61-15 which is a 3x1mm shape that turned out to be good for desoldering the legs of a barrel jack connector.  After using the FR-301 with various tips for through hole I got on a roll and tried desoldering other stuff and ran into a SMD LED.  I tried diligently with a regular (Hakko 888) soldering iron and solder wick but there was no way that I could figure out to free the SMD LED; I tried enough that I thought it would be dead if I ever got it off.  Then I had the idea to use the heat shrink hot air gun with it's pretty big (~15mm) barrel and the LED came off within several seconds - and surprisingly/luckily it didn't melt surrounding components.  The removed LED turned out to still be good when tested with a DMM.  So, I'm sold on hot air for SMD removal but before I jump on a Quick 861DW or an Atten ST-862D I figured I'd try some more with the heat shrink gun.

If anyone wants to point out why I "need" either the Quick or the Atten over the heat shrink gun, please say. :)  And any help with  interim nozzle recommendations would be great.  Maybe the Quick or Atten nozzles might fit over a 15mm heat gun barrel?  Thx
 

Offline Electro Fan

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Re: Looking for ~15mm (Inside Diameter Cap for) Heat Gun Hot Air Nozzle
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2021, 05:09:56 am »
Ok, fwiw, I figured out that my plain old every day tube heat shrinking gun has an attachment that takes it to about 22mm in diameter and I ordered up a set of nozzles that are just about 22mm at the fitting end and range from 3mm to 10mm at the nozzle end.

The hot air gun only has two speeds but it quickly gets plenty warm.  I found with the 4mm nozzle it was fast and easy to remove SMDs down to 0402.  I tried using some Kapton tape to protect the surrounding components that were placed very nearby on a practice board but found that the Kapton tape wasn't necessary if I paid attention and focused the nozzle.  At 0805 I could also put them back in place (but I think it's easier to do that with a soldering iron).  I was also able to remove a SOT-23, a SOP14, and a QFP44 pretty quickly.  It's probably not nearly as nice to handle/manage as a normal hot air station wand but if you happen to have a heat gun it might be something to consider for occasional part removal.  (Regarding temperature, all my work was done with unleaded solder.)

One note on the sizing:  these nozzles are approximately 22m in diameter where they attach to the heat gun.  The fitting can be slightly adjusted (widened/narrowed) and they seem to be designed to fit in place with a pressure fit and then held securely with a screw and nut but if the fitting is widened too much the screw won't clear the radius, so then you are down to just the pressure fit which seems to work, but it's something to be aware of.  The standard fittings that came with the heat gun are only pressure fits so maybe the screw with nut isn't necessary?

Safety Alert:  A concern is that if the nozzle is too small (3mm?) and the heat gun doesn't move enough air or runs too hot the hot air might get trapped inside the hot air gun - so stay on the lookout for that.
 

Offline tooki

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Re: Looking for ~15mm (Inside Diameter Cap for) Heat Gun Hot Air Nozzle
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2021, 12:35:40 pm »
Why would you think that’s a concern, given that that’s not an unusual nozzle size, and the simple fact that there’s a temperature sensor (if not multiple) in the handle, so it’s constantly adjusting the temperature anyway?
 

Offline Electro Fan

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Re: Looking for ~15mm (Inside Diameter Cap for) Heat Gun Hot Air Nozzle
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2021, 10:27:41 pm »
Why would you think that’s a concern, given that that’s not an unusual nozzle size, and the simple fact that there’s a temperature sensor (if not multiple) in the handle, so it’s constantly adjusting the temperature anyway?

Sure, 3mm is not an unusual size for a product designed to work with a 3mm nozzle but the smallest nozzle that comes with this product is 15mm so at 3mm you are pushing the air through a considerably smaller opening.  If the throughput doesn't accommodate the air and the heat it has only one place left go to..... inside the hot air gun looking for other ways to exhaust and dissipate. And maybe the temperature sensor (if it was designed well, built well, and operating well) will save the day.  Better to be alert and safe than sorry.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2021, 06:27:48 am by Electro Fan »
 

Offline RayRay

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Re: Looking for ~15mm (Inside Diameter Cap for) Heat Gun Hot Air Nozzle
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2021, 11:08:48 pm »
A cheapo heat gun is intended mostly for heatshrinks, not for soldering/desoldering work.
And the nozzles you've mentioned on the 2nd post are for use with a hot air station that uses the 850 style handle, such as this one:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000112389232.html
A hot air station would give you far more precision (temperature/air flow) as well as support for various nozzle types (provided you get one with a 850 handle, such as the above^) Another useful product (only for 2 point components) is the YIHUA 938D (SMD soldering tweezers).  Anyways, when working with hot air, you'd wanna first apply kapton tape around the area you're working on (to minimize the odds of damaging/moving near-by components). Also, having a decent microscope is a must (G1200 at minimum)
 

Offline Electro Fan

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Re: Looking for ~15mm (Inside Diameter Cap for) Heat Gun Hot Air Nozzle
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2021, 12:11:58 am »
A cheapo heat gun is intended mostly for heatshrinks, not for soldering/desoldering work.
And the nozzles you've mentioned on the 2nd post are for use with a hot air station that uses the 850 style handle, such as this one:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000112389232.html
A hot air station would give you far more precision (temperature/air flow) as well as support for various nozzle types (provided you get one with a 850 handle, such as the above^) Another useful product (only for 2 point components) is the YIHUA 938D (SMD soldering tweezers).  Anyways, when working with hot air, you'd wanna first apply kapton tape around the area you're working on (to minimize the odds of damaging/moving near-by components). Also, having a decent microscope is a must (G1200 at minimum)

Thanks and roger on all that.

I am getting close to going for an official hot air gun.... maybe a Quick 957DW+ .... but I figured I'd try some nozzles with my existing heat shrink gun.  It's a pretty big hot air gun and probably not well optimized (or intended) for desoldering.  The specs are 1800 watts with two modes:  i) 50-450C, 190-210L/min, and ii) 50-650C, 250-500L/min.  I think the second mode at full-on temp is way more air and heat than the 3mm nozzle can accommodate (or that SMDs need for removal). 

I've practiced on lots of components on a few PCBs and at about 2/3s the temp on the lesser air setting it works reasonably well.  The 4mm nozzle worked for removing 2 point SMDs and the 10mm nozzle worked for some small/mid size ICs.  When the Quick shows up I'll be curious to see how much more useful/effective it is, and I think the same bent nozzles might work with the Quick. 

I have tried some Kapton tape; so far I've managed to remove things without the Kapton tape but I'm sure if it wasn't just a practice board and something that needed to work when it was all done the Kapton tape would be useful in helping to protect nearby components and the board. 

The whole hot air process seems to be part science and part art/technique that I'm sure like everything else takes some time and experience to develop.

Thanks for the recommendation on the Yihua 938D.  I was keen on a soldering tweezer awhile back but got talked out of that around here. 



It looks like it operates standalone (without being part of a multi-function station) which would be ideal.  Not sure if it's available for 110-120V.*

Some of the comments on the following link below this video weren't too stellar but maybe those folks got defective units or just didn't quite understand how to use the tool?



The conclusion of this second review seems to be that it is good for removing components but not so much for putting them on.  I can believe that using a soldering iron for installation is a better approach but it seems like a tweezers could potentially be a more focused method of removing 2 point SMDs vs blowing hot air from a nozzle.  Thoughts?

On the microscope I'm 100% onboard.  After adding one of those a few months ago all of my soldering experience has improved an entire level if not a couple levels.  It makes a huge difference when you can see clearly what's happening.  :)

*Edit:  Looks like the Yihua 938D is available for 110V from Amazon
« Last Edit: March 29, 2021, 12:43:10 am by Electro Fan »
 

Offline RayRay

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Re: Looking for ~15mm (Inside Diameter Cap for) Heat Gun Hot Air Nozzle
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2021, 02:11:14 am »
You're welcome :)
The Quick 957DW+ seems to be using 850 style nozzles, so it could be compatible with em (although,I haven't fully looked into the matter). That said, an 858d with a 850 handle would definitely save you some money (I use one of those, and it definitely gets the job done). FYI, for precision work, you'd wanna also get a hot air stand & one or more pcb holders, I.E:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32968943246.html
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32888968304.html
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000970812616.html
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005002080553994.html

a heat resistant silicone pad is also useful:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32921860796.html

having a set of solder assist tools & ic suction tool is also useful:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/33054996743.html
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005001699894032.html

FYI, solder paste (or liquid solder if you will) is often used for SMD work, such as this one:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000070976647.html
Along with a syringe (it becomes solid when heating with hot air)

For working with BGA ICs, a preheater can often be useful too:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32866150761.html
But that's for more advance use, and not for beginners.

And yes, the 938D is also available for 110V (although, I'm sure it'd be cheaper to get from aliexpress)
And as for the 2nd video, it's hard to draw any conclusions from it really (as he didn't do things properly, not to mention didn't specify the temperature used or tried to increase it). Before desoldering anything (whether SMD, or regular components) you'd wanna add a good amount of flux or fresh solder to the joint first (as this helps a lot!) and he didn't do that, and again, there's the temperature thing as well (maybe it just wasn't high enough). For big SMD caps, I personally prefer using a soldering iron (along with a solder assist tool) to gently lift up each leg from the pad while melting the solder at the same time.
 

Offline Electro Fan

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Re: Looking for ~15mm (Inside Diameter Cap for) Heat Gun Hot Air Nozzle
« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2021, 03:27:42 am »
Thanks for all the recommendations with the links.

I think I'm more or less on your path.

I've used the 4th PCB holder on your list and now I'm using stickvices with the high temp jaws.

Recently I added a FR301.  It is a definitely a step up from the manual solder suckers.  To make it really useful you need a few tips of different sizes and shapes.

I've just ordered my first solder paste and looking forward to learning how to use it.

Agreed on flux and adding fresh solder - no sense in taking shortcuts.  "If you don't have time to do it right the first time, when are you going to have time."  :)

I haven't reached the BGA level yet but the good news is that is keeping a preheater lower on the list.  Who would have ever guessed that I would even know what a preheater is?  TEA  ;)
 


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