Articulating paste retainers improve SMT printing
TRANSITION AUTOMATION Fourth generation design of articulating paste retainer incorporates new features and benefits for SMT printing users. Devices serve as an important part of the SMT squeegee that keeps the solder paste within the printing area of the stencil. Product gives users full adjustability, both up-down positions and left-right positions, and also enables users to quickly loosen and remove the paste retainer to allow easier cleaning during product changeover. This new patent-pending design features a parallel leaf spring configuration that provides a gentle degree of freedom, with a soft spring load in the Z direction that allows the paste retainer to ride close to the stencil, or in contact with the stencil without causing damage to or coining of the foil. The leaf spring design holds the paste retainer in a rigid vertical orientation which provides maximum damming function to keep the solder paste in the print area. This helps users minimize process interruption to reposition solder paste into the print area and also improves the solder paste quality by minimizing leakage of idle solder paste from the print area and consequently drying while idle.