Product Spotlight Archives

Ten Labels to Solve Your Engineering Challenges


Put the right one on There’s a right label for every application and Brady has designed a handy cheat sheet to help you on your way. When choosing a label, you’ll want to ask yourself several questions – Will the Read more

Dry Air Static Control and Ionizers


Dry air and ESD control The specifications and devices being assembled determine the recommended humidity range for a manufacturing facility. When the air is dry, static control becomes much more challenging. Although ESD events may be reduced by increasing the Read more

Zero in on Smog with Weller’s Fume Extractors


Weller Zero Smog Fume Extractors Compared   Smog - fog or haze combined with smoke and other atmospheric pollutants Weller’s fume extractors remove dangerous gases and harmful particles out of the air, typically while soldering to create a healthier environment. If you’re Read more

Get to Know Stencil Rolls

Posted on by Barb N. in Product Spotlight Leave a comment

You Get What You Pay For

You’ve most likely done it—chosen a lesser priced, no-name brand item hoping it will perform as well as the brand name one. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. It’s always a risk and generally based on the critical nature and use of the product or past experience. Should you take a risk when considering lower priced stencil rolls?

First you need to understand what you may be losing while believing you’re gaining.

stencil-rolls-all-specWhat’s the Diff?

You may not be able to see the difference and be dazzled by the price but you might want to look below the surface before you decide to go the cheaper route. Consider paper towels. You have a bounty (no pun intended) of choices and generally brand name towels promote anything from thicker, to more absorbent, to softer and on and on until you give up trying to compare. Most of us have tried the cheaper version of paper towels. Did you see a difference? Most likely you did and it had to do with quality.

Before Choosing Cheap – Consider This

Off-Brand or Premium Brand Stencil Rolls

We’re all brand aware and we know that some brands have earned the trust of customers because the product does what it says it will do every time. That’s part of the reason you pay a higher price–reliability. Also, keep in mind—most manufacturers will require high-quality, hydroentanged fabric because lower-quality ones can cause problems. Can you afford to sacrifice quality for quantity?

stencil-rolls-microcareCue the Glue

Some very cheap stencil rolls use glue fillers to lessen the material costs. The glue used in stencil roll paper made from polyester fibers can actually dissolve and weaken the paper with the application of solvents used in stencil wiping. As a result, if examined by a microscope, you’ll find that more residue has been left behind and caused increased linting. Glue fillers may make the paper cheaper, however what you gain in price, you lose in the paper’s ability to pick up contaminants.

Take a Second When Considering “Seconds”

There’s a reason why they’re called “seconds” and if you’re not sure why a particular batch has that description, you should find out before you buy. Seconds are called “seconds” because they haven’t met the manufacturer’s quality standards for some reason. How will that one decision affect quality on down the line?

Shorted

No, they really did short you and knowingly. We can revisit the paper towel experience or let’s talk toilet paper. Yes, the roll ran out really fast—but it was cheaper. Hmmm–less for less? You bet your bottom dollar.

cheap-expensiveThere’s no real comparison when truly comparing paper towels and toilet paper to the critical nature of stencil paper rolls. The sophistication that goes into researching and developing efficient and effective stencil rolls pales in comparison. However, as paper goes, they both use the same gimmicks to get you to believe you’re getting more for your money. And, companies like MicroCare have documented proof of rolls being priced significantly lower because the rolls have much less paper on them. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Guarantees

When buying, look for a company that offers unconditional guaranteed quality. For instance, MicroCare not only promises quality but also that their unique MicroWipe FP paper will lower your stencil printing costs.


Twelve Reasons to Consider a Mantis Stereo Microscope

Posted on by Barb N. in Magnifiers and Microscopes, Product Reviews, Product Spotlight, Vendor News Leave a comment

Sleek and Ergonomical

Original_Mantis_stereo-viewer-microscope_507How many of you have ever seen or used an eyepiece-less microscope like Vision Engineering’s Mantis? Ever wonder about the name–Mantis? Take a good look. What’s the head remind you of? A praying _____.  That, however is about as far as the comparison goes.The Mantis series of microscopes offer some of the sleekest and most ergonomically-designed visual inspection capabilities and comfort ever imagined. That’s not to say a praying mantis isn’t just as fascinating to look at, however, how the Mantis looks is just a small part of the picture.

Operator Comfort = Time and Money Savings

Mantis-Compact-inspection-microscope-Boom-12-507px_507The Mantis stereoscopic microscope may look like one eyepiece, yet it’s actually eyepiece-less. The operator’s eyes never touch the scope; ports for eyepieces do not exist.  Before, workers were always leaning over their microscopes and experienced constant eye fatigue.

Now, when using the Mantis, operators function in an entirely different way – because they can now sit comfortably and look straight ahead at their work. The impact goes way beyond operator comfort to include improved worker efficiency and accuracy, as well as saving owners time and money.

Twelve reasons the Mantis will make your operators, inspection customers and you, happy.

Before

Operators
  1. Felt compelled to hunch over their scope to fit their eyes to the eyepieces
  2. Worried about not being able to wear their glasses
  3. Changed out eyepieces to fit different worker needs
  4. Encountered decreased hand-to-eye coordination when looking through lenses
  5. Experienced health-related absences due to poor body position and fatigue
  6. Missed having any ambient light available because of the need to keep eyes to the eyepieces—adding to eye strain.

After

Operators –
  1. Experienced less to no back strain; sitting up straight came naturally when viewing
  2. Swapped out places with other operators without having to switch eyepieces
  3. Noticed excellent hand-to-eye coordination; increased peripheral vision
  4. Inspected and detected solder faults with more accuracy and ease
  5. Appreciated the natural ambient light now available between their eyes and the screen
  6. Observed superb 3D images; more depth perception because the Mantis head can be moved around

All-Spec carries the entire line of Mantis stereo microscopes including the Mantis Compact, Mantis Elite and Mantis Elite Cam. Each series has been designed to address and solve your needs and those of your operators whether being used for inspections, performing manipulation tasks or documenting. See which one’s right for you.


Cleanrooms – Every Breath You Take, Every Move You Make

Posted on by Barb N. in Cleanroom, Product Spotlight Leave a comment

Keep Contamination at Bay

You may or may not have ever had to don cleanroom clothing. If you have, you understand the “musts” of putting the multiple layers of protection on yourself to keep contamination at bay. The more critical the application the more clothes you’ll need.

europlaz-technologies-ltd-injection-moulding-cleanroom 1There’s no bones about it; everything is dirty. And even when you think it’s clean, it’s not. That’s why there’s a huge demand for “special” cleanroom apparel for gowning.

Sounds fashionable doesn’t it…apparel, gowning? Nuh-uh, this is not “Project Runway.”

All joking aside, cleanroom gowning is essential to working in the world of electronic assembly and PCBs. Immediately, you are one of the worst sources of contamination at a whopping 80%. And, there are bazillions of other contaminants besides you — supply air, room surfaces, tools, production machinery and processes, equipment and don’t forget your next door neighbors.

Thank goodness most of the bazillions can be sterilized or disinfected – but you can’t. Enter the invaluable sterile cleanroom wardrobe offering endless ways to cover you up, over, around and if needed, upside down.

Just like your dog or cat, you shed skin and hair, constantly. With it come microbes and the more you move the more microbes you make. Also, if you cough, talk, smoke, exhale or use cosmetics, you’re broadcasting particles far and wide.

These particles seem determined to get into the cleanroom with you, even if you believe you’ve worn enough protective clothing and put it on correctly. From the fashionable bouffant cap and beard covers to the myriad of shoe cover types—high traction, heavy-coated propropylene, anti-skid, super track, hypalon soles, meltblown, spunbond—cleanroom product manufacturers have you covered.

You’re Covered

Need a coat or coveralls, aka, bunny suit? All-Spec carries 72 coats and 115 coveralls. Did you say gloves? Take your pick from latex, neoprene, cut resistant, nitrile, vinyl—gloves for extreme temperatures, light-weight, heavy-weight; and what about the cuff – beaded, rolled or straight?

Each glove has been carefully and meticulously designed to work in particular environments and with specific applications to help keep you from contaminating your work and work area such as during assembly and inspection.

Every one of the hundreds and hundreds of cleanroom clothing items have a reason for existing–to stop particles from escaping from you. And cleanroom clothing has an enormous impact on reducing contaminants.

It’s in the Air

Keep dirty air out cleanroomThink of cleanroom clothing as a barrier between you and cleanroom air. An enormous amount of time and money have been spent to clean the air space you’ll be entering and working in. Properly suiting up for electronic assembly environments can be critical and if not done right, costly and potentially unsafe.

Those rascally particles, although your cleanroom apparel works hard to filter them, will still get out wherever they can–through neck, wrist or ankle openings, pores, holes and tears in the fabric and through your face mask. Everything around you, including the gowning bench you sit on while dressing, works to lessen contamination.

Additionally, every fabric that goes into the construction of a piece of cleanroom clothing has been carefully designed and constructed to minimize contamination as well as adhere to gowning protocols. For each cleanroom garment listed, All-Spec provides the “Standards Met.” For example, this KleenGuard coverall is listed ANSI/ISEA 101-1996, so that you can determine whether the apparel meets requirements.

Some cleanroom garments can be washed, however, most will be disposed of after use. How and where they’re disposed is also important; and sometimes users change one piece of clothing several times in a day depending on the cleanroom requirements.

The goal is to keep the sterile cleanroom clothing sterile including through the gowning process. Also, the order in which you don each item of clothing, down to the most minute detail, must also be considered to produce the most efficient and effective result, that is, the least amount of contamination possible.

Remember, every breath you take, every move you make introduces the potential for contamination. So be sure to “police” your own efforts.


Use Freeze Spray to Troubleshoot Heat-Related PCB Issues

Posted on by Michelle R. in Product Spotlight Leave a comment

airCanForBlogDoes the thought of troubleshooting a PCB device leave you dreading the arduous process ahead? No need to clear your calendar; cool the situation with compressed air, and diagnose the problem quickly.

When trying to pinpoint heat-related issues, freeze sprays can rapidly lower circuit board temperature, enabling technicians to diagnose and repair the problem without shutting down the system and swapping boards.

However, before you head to your local office supply store for a can of compressed air, it should be noted that not all compressed air was created equal. Specialty sprays, such as those offered by Chemtronics, are specially designed for safe use on both boards and components, even in “live” situations. In addition, these products are designed to prevent static electricity damage on sensitive components.

When circuit boards malfunction (and they will), don’t get overheated trying to fix the problem. Keep cool and trust All-Spec to carry the PCB repair parts and accessories you need to diagnose and repair any problem that arises!

 


Hassle-free Printing— and More!

Posted on by Michelle R. in Product Spotlight Leave a comment

Using a reliable, high-quality printer shouldn’t require a degree in electronics. With the Brady® BBP® 30 printer, almost anyone can create superior and reliable labels faster than ever for use in manufacturing, medical, distribution and industrial facilities.

Not only is printing easier; replacing ribbon cartridges is just as painless— it’s almost impossible to install them incorrectly! The BBP30 is also compatible with Brady Workstation software and free Brady apps. This entry-level printer is designed to replace Brady’s MiniMark™ printer and is works with Brady B30 series labels.

All-Spec has this printer available for purchase right now. Simply call or visit us online today!blogBBP30


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