PCB stencil can also be called SMT Stencil. These stencils are basically a thin sheet of some stainless steel. The basic components required for the functioning are a printer, solder paste, and a stencil. Various types of stencils are available. These stencils are generally used to print elements over a printed circuit board. The printing process is done with the help of different methods. These stencils help in establishing a stronger electric connection in a device and also makes the work smooth. SMT stencil comes in different sizes and with different properties.
Why Do We Use SMT Stencil?
Stencils are important for the assembling of PCB. Continuous deposition of solder paste over the surface of stencil makes it incredible to function. PCB Stencils are very important for a smooth functioning of an electronic device. The basic electronic connections are made with the help of these stencils. The process of connecting wires and pads are truly based on the stencil over a printed circuit board. So, we can certainly conclude that these stencils play a vital role. They are of absolute importance for the manufacturing of a printed circuit board.
Different techniques are used to perform stenciling. They are:
- Solder Paste Stencil:
A sticky grey substance is known as solder paste. The process of stenciling with the help solder paste is quite simple and is known as Solder Paste Stencil. A constant deposition of the solder paste is done to the stencil on a bare circuit board. The solder paste attaches the stencil to the Printed circuit board. One can perform these functions at home as well. You will only need a solder paste, a stencil and obviously a bare circuit board.
- Laser Cut Stencils:
These stencils are quite in demand these days. Laser stencils are made with the help of laser cutting techniques. It is made on a washable and tear-free translucent paper.
Types of Stencils
Stencils have been made in different sizes and shapes. They are made keeping in mind the structure of printed circuit boards. Solder stencils are mainly of 3 types:
- Framed SMT Stencil:
These are basically laser cut stencils. They are mounted in the stencil frame for as long they can be used.
- Frameless SMT Stencil:
These stencils are highly durable. They are quite inexpensive as compared to one mentioned before. These are laser cut stencil.
- Prototype SMT Stencil
These stencils are also known as customized stencils. They are customized according to various PCB needs. Primarily they were just used for manual printing.