Even a tiny amount of lead (Pb) in a batch of lead-free solder can ruin it, requiring that the entire pot be discarded as scrap, costing a PCB assembler thousands of dollars in lost alloy. Preventing cross-contamination is critical to ensuring ‘pure’ alloy products for lead-free customers; this is why Amerway Inc., a domestic manufacturer of high-purity solder bar and wire products for the electronics manufacturing industry, has built a new 4,000 ft2 lead-free casting room within its manufacturing facility in Pennsylvania.
Lead-bearing solders are still used for Hi-Rel and military electronic products, while lead-free solders are found in most commercial electronic products in compliance with global RoHS directives. But for a facility that produces both types of alloys, it is critical to not allow them to ever mix.
In making the announcement, Terry Buck, President, states that “Our new state-of-the-art lead-free casting room is designed to isolate our lead-free alloys so that they can never become contaminated with even the tiniest amounts of lead,” he says. “Our new lead-free casting room is equipped with four (4) new lead-free pots and a continuous casting machine. The Continuous Caster improves lead times for all orders, especially large orders. It can generate on average 2,000 lbs. an hour of alloy products, so that our customers not only receive their products fast and on time, but they can also be assured of its absolute purity.”