Technical Articles Archives

Latex Gloves – Are You Allergic?

Many industrial manufacturing environments require workers to wear protective gloves, including during electronics and medical device production and assembly. Latex gloves not only protect workers from harmful chemicals but also protect products from worker contact and contamination during manufacturing Read more

ST 925 SMT Rework System–Three favorites combined into one nice savings

Save a few steps--and some money--with the Pace 925 SMT Rework System Pace has introduced a new low-cost “combination” system ideal for surface mount technology (SMT) rework. It’s worth adding up the savings by comparing the a la carte prices Read more

Metcal’s CV-5200 Connection Validation Soldering Station Changes Everything

You may or may not have heard about Metcal’s new soldering station, the CV-5200. The evolutionary tool removes much of the reliance on visual inspection of hand-soldered joints and adds a second, more technology-driven method for validating a successful Read more

In stock! Introducing the Dazor Saturn LED Spot!

Posted on by Guest in All-Spec News, Guest Blog, Industry News, New Products, Product Spotlight, Technical Articles, Vendor Spotlight Leave a comment

Dazor Saturn LED Spot(A special thank you to Dazor for guest-blogging the content below!)

Dazor’s new Saturn LED Spot is the latest generation in high-quality, energy-efficient lighting designed for years of use with the most demanding visual tasks in a variety of production environments.   Many LED fixture manufacturers claim their light will last for the full LED life published by the chip manufacturer.  In reality they rarely do.  The reason is most fixture manufacturers do not have the expertise – or they take shortcuts in materials or production – to design the required combination of electrical, thermal, mechanical and optical system components.

In comparison, the Saturn LED spot is designed with advanced LED chip technology alongside Dazor’s engineering proficiency in optoelectronics and thermal management.  What does this mean to a user?  If a 75-watt incandescent or halogen fixture is replaced with a Saturn LED fixture, the initial fixture investment will be recovered in a year.  And considering the annual savings in energy costs, bulb replacements and related maintenance, during the 15+ year life of the fixture the return on investment is earned many times over.

A common measurement of a light source is the lumen.  Lumen, or luminous flux, is the total amount of visible light emitted from a source.  Understanding this definition is crucial when comparing different light source technologies.  As an example, a 75-watt incandescent bulb produces 1200 lumens.  That sounds like a lot of energy and a lot of light, and it is.  However, light from a filament-based source is emitted in an omni-directional pattern; that is, equally in all directions.  And when installed into a fixture, at best only 45% of the light hits the intended work surface.  This is an extremely inefficient method for delivering light where the user needs it. By contrast, an optically designed LED light source directs the light precisely where it’s needed and requires a fraction of the energy to do so.

The amount of light on a work surface is measured in the footcandle or lux.  1 footcandle (fc) = 10.764 lux (lx), with lux being the metric equivalent of footcandle.  At a 12” distance, a 75-watt screw-in bulb mounted in a typical incandescent housing produces about 300fc of visible light intensity on a work surface, while the 5.5-watt Saturn LED fixture produces 2500fc using a 16ᴼ optical beam spread.  That’s less than 1/10 the energy required to produce eight times the light intensity.

Another quantitative measurement of lighting is efficacy, which is the amount of light produced by the fixture compared to the amount of power consumed to produce it.  The Saturn LED fixture produces 600 lumens by consuming total fixture power of 5.5 watts, resulting in 109 lumens per watt.  An incandescent bulb produces 1200 lumens by consuming 75 watts, resulting in a luminous efficacy of 16 lumens per watt.  And 90% of the total radiant energy produced by an incandescent bulb is heat, not light.   So an incandescent bulb is a lot better as a heat source than it is as a source of light.

Using less energy, saving money, and even being environmentally friendly are all quantifiable advantages of the Saturn LED light over incandescent, halogen and fluorescent light sources.  But what about quality of the light?  All the numerical benefits don’t mean a thing if a user doesn’t like the lighting.  In its infancy as a new and alternative light source, LED manufacturers rushed to sell LEDs into the marketplace and fixture manufacturers were just as happy to install them into poorly designed fixtures.  The result was lighting fixtures which housed LED technology that produced unappealing light output and performance that didn’t live up to expectations.  That’s still the case today when shortcuts are taken.  However, dramatic improvements during recent years have been made in LED chip designs and manufacturing control processes specifically focusing on light quality.  Pleasing, uniform, color-accurate illumination that meets performance expectation is exactly what’s designed into the Saturn LED light.

In addition, the Saturn LED light has a precision-smooth on/off dimming control machined into the aluminum housing and a choice of optical beam spreads to suit user applications.  The fixture is available on a gooseneck or counterbalanced floating arm and can be mounted to horizontal, sloped or vertical surfaces, a rolling or pedestal floor stand, or onto any end-user equipment.

Kester Ending Flux Dispensing Pens – Here’s What to Do

Posted on by Michael D. in All-Spec News, Product Reviews, Technical Articles Leave a comment

cw8100Kester is ending production of their popular line of flux dispensing pens in August. We can suggest two alternatives for everyone who wants to continue using pen applicator:

  1. Buy an empty refillable flux pen like the Bonkote BON102F-1 or CircuitWorks CW7000 and a gallon of Kester flux and fill them up yourself.
  2. Switch to a CircuitWorks flux dispensing pen.

CircuitWorks has a pen that matches up with each Kester version. Please note that the CircuitWorks no-clean pens have some rosin and higher solids than the Kester models.

Kester Pen CircuitWorks Pen Alternative
KF985M00 Flux Dispensing Pen No-Clean Organic 985M CW8100 CircuitWorks Flux Dispensing Pen No Clean
KF952S00 Flux Dispensing Pen No-Clean Low Solids 952-S CW8400 CircuitWorks Lead-Free Flux Dispensing Pen
KF18615 Flux Dispensing Pen Rosin 186 CW8200 CircuitWorks Flux Dispensing Pen Rosin
KF959T15 Flux Dispensing Pen No-Clean Organic 959T CW8100 CircuitWorks Flux Dispensing Pen No Clean
KF95105 Flux Dispensing Pen No-Clean Organic 951 CW8100 CircuitWorks Flux Dispensing Pen No Clean
KF233115 Flux Dispensing Pen Organic 2331-ZX CW8300 CircuitWorks Water Soluble Flux Dispensing Pen

If you have a comment on Kester ending production of flux pens or CircuitWorks products please post below. For questions call Customer Service at (800) 537-0351.

Update: Kester Has Cancelled Discontinuation!

In response to customer demand, Kester has reversed discontinuation of their prominent line of flux dispensing pens! This is a particularly exciting update for those who are accustomed to the seamless application these flux pens provide. Designed to meet a variety of soldering requirements, Kester flux dispensing pens are available now through All-Spec.


Best Way to Clean with Texwipe Cleanroom Wipes

Posted on by Andy in Technical Articles Leave a comment

There are better ways to do everything, and cleaning surfaces with cleanroom wipes is no exception. The experts at Texwipe have put together this great step-by-step wiping guide you should post everywhere contamination is an issue.  You’ll get the most out of your wipes and insure surfaces are as clean as possible – whether wet or dry.

Click here to view the step-by-step cleanroom wiping guide.

If you’d like to add a comment please post one below.  For more information about Texwipe products please call Customer Service at (800) 537 0351.

Swedish Nurses Have Helped Develop Your Next Shoes

Posted on by Andy in Technical Articles Leave a comment

Nurses in a Swedish hospital a while back discovered what many of us know already — crocs™ are extremely comfortable to wear at work. Soon more and more were wearing them, but little did they know the rubberized soles could lead to a build-up of static.  When critical medical equipment suddenly failed 3 separate times, hospital administrators went looking for a reason.  They eventually traced the problem to the shoes and banned them from the facility.

The good news in all of this is it spurred crocs to develop the new ESD-safe version now stocked and available through All-Spec.  Now everyone in a cleanroom or static sensitive environment can enjoy all-day, on-the-job comfort.   Designed with a wide base, anatomically correct heel and medical arch support, you get a secure, stable fit.  The foam-based material absorbs shocks to your feet, knees, hips and lower back, significantly reducing fatigue.


  • Surface resistivity: 1×105 – 1×108
  • Cleanroom class 10,000 (ISO 4)
  • Material: Proprietary foam-based material
  • Colors: White or black
  • Men’s sizes: 3-13
  • Women’s sizes: 5-12


You’ll find the complete line of ESD-safe crocs in your choice of black or white at  Have any questions or comments?  Leave a message below or call Customer Service at (800) 537-0351.

Types of Pliers – Joint Type

Posted on by Andy in Technical Articles Leave a comment

Tongue and Groove PlierAfter you choose your plier jaw then joint type is typically next on the list. Picking out the proper joint type is important, as it greatly affects the performance of your pliers. The three main types of plier joints are rivet, box, and tongue and groove.

Rivet joints are the most basic type, consisting of a metal pin or bolt that holds the two sides of the pliers together and providing a fulcrum for them to pivot around. This type of joint is cheaper than most, as it is easy to make but does not hold up to high strain situations.

Box joints offer more strength at a slightly higher price. These joints are made by making a hole in one side of the pliers and having a peg that is attached to the other side pushed into it. Because the fulcrum is a part of the plier it is stronger than rivet joints, allowing you to work on projects with high load or strain levels.

Lastly, tongue and groove pliers have an adjustable joint, allowing you to change the jaw opening size. This allows you to use one set of pliers for a wide range of situations, without the handle getting wider. Tongue and groove pliers can be made with either a rivet or a box joint as the fulcrum, so look at which is used to see if they can be used in high strain situations.

Do you have any more questions on types of plier joints? Leave a comment below, or call Customer Service at (800) 537-0351 today!