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Questions about the BatchPCB service

Moderator: robacarp

By natanel
this is a beginner question

what do I get from sending the GTP/GLP layr to batchPCB (with the rest of the layers)

1) do I get stencil sheet and need to use squeegee with paste?
2) do I get PCB with paste on it, so I can place the component without the need of any extra paste?

if not
for what does the batchPCB use this layers?
does it change anything on the PCB board?

By tdhoward
Hi natanel,

From what I understand, BatchPCB only provides circuit boards, not solder paste stencils. See here:

Since solder paste typically is only usable for 4-10 hours after stenciling onto the board (due to the liquid flux drying out, etc.), you wouldn't really want to get a PCB pre-stenciled. It would also be pretty messy.

There are some handy services for getting cheap (less than $100, I think?) foil stencils, but then you have to purchase no-clean solder paste, carefully build a fixture to hold your board in place, and squeegee it by hand. Then you have to figure out how to reflow it. I'm sure you could use a oven if you had to. It's not very fun, and without all the high-dollar machinery of a professional SMT shop, it can take way more time and money than just hand-soldering. Of course, if you're trying to use components like BGAs or ICs with ground pads, hand soldering won't cut it.

Hope this helps!

By nickersonm
If you're not doing more than a few dozen pads, and you have moderately steady hands, a syringe of solder paste works just fine. Note that you'll need some method of reflowing, such as a skillet or hotplate.