The traditionally green coating which protects copper on PCBs from oxidation and shorting due to solder. Use this tag for PCB design questions and soldering questions which require attention to the mask layer.

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Solder mask for 0.5mm pitch TQFP

I'm using Atmel SAM chips and the data sheets don't have any mention of solder mask clearance for their TQFP packages. What would be a nominal pad/solder mask opening/cream size for a 0.5mm pitch ...
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164 views

Gerber - is my understanding of solder mask layer (GTS / GBS) correct?

I've just had a PCB manufactured for me, but it seems like the solder mask is only applied to where the copper is. I'm trying to figure out if it's my fault or not. According to my understanding ...
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120 views

Solder stop mask and tinning sequence

Is it recommended to tin PCBs before applying solder stop mask or should I apply the solder stop mask to the PCB and then apply the tinning? Would tinning before applying the solder stop mask be ...
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5answers
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How to remove solder mask?

I'd like to reuse a PCB in non-intended way and I have to remove the green solder mask to expose the copper traces in 1 x 3 cm area. Is there any safe method to do it without damaging the traces? ...
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6k views

Solder Mask and Cream in Eagle

I've got this part specification for the Paste Mask excerpted from the datasheet: There's a lot of lingo in this short paragraph that I would like to better understand conceptually. Specifically I ...
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1answer
723 views

Solder Mask Color Code

Is there standard that recommend guidance of particular colors of solder mask? A while back I was told by a local assembler that BLUE typically indicates the circuit is ROHS compliant. Yet my Google ...
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1answer
432 views

Why are the pads different for THT / SMT components in Eagle?

I am learning Cadsoft Eagle and have noticed that the pads for SMT devices are on the 'top'/'bottom' display layer, whereas the pads for THT components are on the 'pads' layer. Why is this? I have ...
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611 views

Minimum solder mask ridge (sliver) for DFN package?

What is better: No solder mask at all under the fine pitch component with thermal pad or shrink the thermal pad to leave room for a solder mask ridge around the thermal pad? I am making the layout ...
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832 views

pcb damaged, broken copper any ideas?

I was trying to solder a new capacitor on my pcb and I had problems. At the end I think I burned the copper under the pcb mask and I am wondering if i totally destroyed my pcb. Here is a picture: ...
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206 views

Solder Mask on fPCB starting to degrade

I have a flex-PCB that is acting as a sensor bus for one of my projects. I started getting some wonky readings from one of the sensors, but I found that if I removed the sensor from the bus (with ...
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1answer
212 views

What effect does using two different forms of solder mask on the same PWB have?

We found some PWBs that seem to have both film and liquid solder mask applied on the board. I have never encountered this before and was curious to see if this is acceptable for use.
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3answers
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Questions on mass-production soldering

Wave soldering I am trying to understand how wave soldering works. Unfortunately the Wikipedia article has has left me unsure about the process: Is the entire board with its components ...
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484 views

Will “hot plate” reflow soldering work without a solder resist coating?

With a successful through-hole design under my belt I am now ready to try fabricating a board that uses surface-mount components. I have been reading about this, and have gathered that the DIY crowd ...
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1answer
3k views

DIY solder mask + toner transfer

so I've gotten a decent 1 layer toner transfer process down and I'm looking to add some nice touches to it before I move on to trying 2 layer boards. Anybody know how to do a nice silkscreen layer or ...
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5answers
7k views

What is the purpose of solder mask expansion?

I see recommendations of 2-4 mils for solder mask expansion. But why is it necessary?
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3k views

Soldermask at home?

I am interested in putting that nice green / red soldermask on the PCBs that I make at home. The problem is I can't find a lot of information on it, like where to buy it, etc. Do any hobbyists ...