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Old 02-28-2013, 04:28 PM   #1
Th3_uN1Qu3
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Red face I said i'll never try reballing...

Yeah, i said so. But since i've got access to a bunch of free (and otherwise completely useless) laptop mainboards, thought i'd at least try my hand.

I've already ordered a BGA holder, and will check which stencils and ball diameters i need and order those too.

I already had a hot air station, and i managed to cobble together a bottom heater as well. I'll let your imagination go wild on this one, i'll tell you what it is later. All i can say is that with $5 worth of parts and an item that was lying around the room, sometimes used as a load resistor, i managed to build an usable bottom heater with power control. Not directly temp controlled yet, but till the other bits and bobs are gonna arrive from China... plenty of time.

Had some (really) dead boards to practice on. Results are encouraging. I used just the bottom heater tonight. I know you're not supposed to do that, but i just wanted to see whether the power is enough. It is.

I broke 2 nvidia card PCBs where the GPU got stuck in one corner, but i was actually trying to break them, and i'd already stripped most other parts from the cards anyway. But, i managed to get a completely clean lift of an Intel southbridge off a laptop board, at 225C. Cleaned all the solder from the chip and it's looking mint. Didn't bother to clean the board as well, but there's no lifted pads.

Tomorrow i'll do it properly and use the hot air gun on the top as well, and we shall see what happens.
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Last edited by Th3_uN1Qu3; 02-28-2013 at 04:33 PM..
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Old 02-28-2013, 05:03 PM   #2
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

What kind of bottom heater do you have?

I once tried this without one on a board with serious water damage to practice.
Guess I wasn't patient because I got bored and broke it off and killed the board even more

I've always wanted to do this the right way.
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Old 03-02-2013, 02:09 PM   #3
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

I'll tell you soon enough. Another laptop arrived yesterday, this time it's a Toshiba. Again, diagnosed as bad NB/IGP. Turns on but doesn't light up the display at all. This one hasn't been worked on... supposedly. So, a reflow should at least make it display something, if the chip isn't shot.

Didn't have time to take a look inside yet, but i plan to take it apart tomorrow. First reflow using my new toy, coming soon.
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Old 03-02-2013, 05:13 PM   #4
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

I think one of the most important things is not to use fake tack flux...

Identifying fake AMTECH fluxes

If you want I can point you to a seller from China who I believe sells the legitimate thing albeit expired. I think they're fine, even after expiry.
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Old 03-03-2013, 03:00 AM   #5
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Quote:
Originally Posted by mockingbird View Post
I think one of the most important things is not to use fake tack flux...

Identifying fake AMTECH fluxes

If you want I can point you to a seller from China who I believe sells the legitimate thing albeit expired. I think they're fine, even after expiry.
Damn, I got ripped off.
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Old 03-03-2013, 05:22 AM   #6
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

I know about fake flux. That's all they sell here. And yes, i would appreciate a link to the real thing.

Did some more practice today on scrap boards. Another two clean lifts. An Intel NB off the board i'd pulled the SB off earlier, and a nVidia MCP.

One more thing to watch out for: Always remove the red epoxy thoroughly, or you WILL break pads/traces when you lift the chip, if there's even the tiniest bit of that stuff holding onto the board.
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Old 03-03-2013, 08:48 AM   #7
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Looks like i've got myself another practice board.

As soon as i started pulling the Toshi apart i noticed obvious water damage - it was rusted in places! Ouch. I thought to myself, this ain't gonna work. And indeed, no display before reflow, no display after reflow.

Not a surprise, it looks so bad it was probably not even dried after the spill. AFAIK, the X1600 doesn't fail too often, so it was likely not broken in the first place.
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Old 03-11-2013, 05:19 PM   #8
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Tonight another reflow success story with my new toy. An Acer Aspire 5520G. I said no more Acer, but since it was no obligation, i accepted it. It was just going to be parted out if i couldn't fix it, so i gave it a shot and it worked. That's good, means i'm getting paid tomorrow. Northbridge was at fault on this one. Someone else tried to reflow it previously, and not only did he do an amateur job (it didn't work), but he didn't even bother to take the board out of the case (this model has a big access panel on the bottom), and partly melted the bottom of the case! It's gonna need some remodeling as the wireless card sits crooked.

This one looks like it's had its graphics card upgraded down the road, it says 8400M G 128MB on the case, but it has a 8600M GS 512MB inside. Looks like my acquaintance (hard to call this guy a friend, we just do business together) has gotten himself a pretty good work laptop.

Now i'm just waiting for my supplies to arrive from China, and i can get to the fun stuff.

Last edited by Th3_uN1Qu3; 03-11-2013 at 05:24 PM..
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Old 03-17-2013, 10:29 PM   #9
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Th3_uN1Qu3 View Post
I know about fake flux. That's all they sell here. And yes, i would appreciate a link to the real thing.

Did some more practice today on scrap boards. Another two clean lifts. An Intel NB off the board i'd pulled the SB off earlier, and a nVidia MCP.

One more thing to watch out for: Always remove the red epoxy thoroughly, or you WILL break pads/traces when you lift the chip, if there's even the tiniest bit of that stuff holding onto the board.
stay away from amtech for 2 reasons there are too many fakes and if you get the real thing its quite expensive

kingbo flux is the king of fluxes i say
it works extremely well search google
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Old 03-17-2013, 10:32 PM   #10
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

if you get the chip off and clean you will need to do bga site clean i recommend this video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s38vQxXv0GE
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Old 03-17-2013, 10:46 PM   #11
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Quote:
Originally Posted by xboxhaxorz View Post
stay away from amtech for 2 reasons there are too many fakes and if you get the real thing its quite expensive

kingbo flux is the king of fluxes i say
it works extremely well search google
Authorized Distributors
USA
XModdz

(http://kingboflux.com/)


So is this genuine advice or just advertising?
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Old 03-18-2013, 11:00 AM   #12
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

I had a few HP Pavilions (GPU) and playstations come in with the same stupid ball grid array issues, but I'm reluctant to get involved in the process... I mean if they come from the factory and this happens to them after a couple of years what chance do you have with trying to work something at home...

It would be impossible to give any sort of guarantee when, in my opinion, the devices have a congenital defect that you cannot rectify... well, aside from trying to crap in extra heatsinks or fans to stop the chip from detaching itself..

Having said that, I did a reflow of a PS3 for a friend with a 15 euro heatgun, using Gilksy's tutorials on youtube.... And I was more surprised than anybody else when it worked..
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Old 03-18-2013, 03:59 PM   #13
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

I am a newbee reballer too, I need an advice about cleaning pads on the board, and about aligning the chip in place after reballing. I get all of the 2 steps right, but in the end I get non functional Mobo or graphic card.
Firstly I built my own reballing machine which is consisted of hot air station above, and a grill below. I managed to do the clean lift, but I don't know if the chip is "healty" after all of those heating.
I usualy do like this:
1. Preheating below to a 150*C, then I apply above heat to 230*C I pick up the chip (this is the first heating of the chip)
2. Cleaning the chip (the second heating of the chip)
3. Heating the chip to melt the balls (third heating of the chip)
4. Aligning the chip with the markings on the board and heating (fourth heating of the chip)
So is it possible that in any of those heating steps the chip is burned?

Also, my problem is when cleaning the pads on the board (I use solder bulb and gently melting residues of solder with that bulb), and afterward use copper wick, and no matter how gently I go with the wick, I always rip off some of the pads on the board, but on the chip I manage to do a nice and clean and shiny pads.
I've seen many videos on YT about cleaning the pads on board. Some use cotton swabs while still hot, some use a piece of silicon to scrub the exces solder.
Can I use just the bulb method instead, and leave the wick?
Also, when using the wick I scrub the insulating warnish between two pads...
Also about aligning the chip?
Any idea?

Last edited by ravenns; 03-18-2013 at 04:05 PM..
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Old 03-18-2013, 04:17 PM   #14
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

I haven't lifted pads with the solder wick, but was pretty close to pulling a few on one of my scrap boards. Use lots of flux and be gentle, you have to feel the wick just glide over the pads. If you feel it rubs or "grabs" the pads, then you either have not enough flux or not enough heat from your iron. This is why pads lift. Edit: You're definitely not using enough flux if the wick scrubs off the solder mask.

I've yet to attempt my first start-to-finish BGA swap, but the supplies have started arriving and i'll get to work soon. In a week tops i'll be able to come with more "hands-on" advice.
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Old 03-18-2013, 04:18 PM   #15
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

The chip must be heated 4 times: to remove it, to clean it, to reball it, and to reflow it. Whether you are heating too much or for too long at each step is a different question.


If you are lifting pads, it may be that you did not heat enough when you removed the chip and it loosened them enough that when you started wicking you finished them off. It could also be that you overheated them instead.

With a DIY system this is quite possible, if it is not calibrated properly, or you are getting uneven heating.

Make sure you your temperatures are accurate and uniform as possible and you are following the proper reflow profile.


When cleaning the pads, you shouldn't need to "scrub" the pads with the wick. Just lay it down, apply heat, then remove. Move to the next area and repeat. Once you get the hang of it you might be able to start moving it around, but I think it's risky.

Overheating and physical stress are the enemy of all pads and traces! Make sure you have the area clean (lots of paste flux), a nice big clean wick, and a good iron.

I don't think you really need the solder bulb at all.
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Old 03-19-2013, 12:32 AM   #16
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Agent24 View Post
Authorized Distributors
USA
XModdz

(http://kingboflux.com/)


So is this genuine advice or just advertising?
well advice because kingbo is truly the best
whos to say you will buy it from xmoddz anywho

most fluxes stop working after 200c kingbo is still bubbling at 240c

amtech is also a great flux BUT the cost is much higher so i say just use kingbo
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Old 03-19-2013, 12:42 AM   #17
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ravenns View Post
I am a newbee reballer too, I need an advice about cleaning pads on the board, and about aligning the chip in place after reballing. I get all of the 2 steps right, but in the end I get non functional Mobo or graphic card.
Firstly I built my own reballing machine which is consisted of hot air station above, and a grill below. I managed to do the clean lift, but I don't know if the chip is "healty" after all of those heating.
I usualy do like this:
1. Preheating below to a 150*C, then I apply above heat to 230*C I pick up the chip (this is the first heating of the chip)
2. Cleaning the chip (the second heating of the chip)
3. Heating the chip to melt the balls (third heating of the chip)
4. Aligning the chip with the markings on the board and heating (fourth heating of the chip)
So is it possible that in any of those heating steps the chip is burned?

Also, my problem is when cleaning the pads on the board (I use solder bulb and gently melting residues of solder with that bulb), and afterward use copper wick, and no matter how gently I go with the wick, I always rip off some of the pads on the board, but on the chip I manage to do a nice and clean and shiny pads.
I've seen many videos on YT about cleaning the pads on board. Some use cotton swabs while still hot, some use a piece of silicon to scrub the exces solder.
Can I use just the bulb method instead, and leave the wick?
Also, when using the wick I scrub the insulating warnish between two pads...
Also about aligning the chip?
Any idea?
Lifting pads happens to everybody, HOWEVER it rarely happens to us now and that comes down to a few things

operator error
soldering iron has low wattage
not using the best wick
not using enough flux

cleaning a pcb is alot harder then a chip due to the pcb being more fragile

if you do LIFT pads and they have no traces its worth a shot to put the chip back on as they may be ground pads

the video at the top is the best way to clean sites
http://*******/15XorQA

you have to be gentle, if you are using pressure to clean then you need a better iron or turn up the heat higher

most components do have a limit of heat cycles and while it may still work the life is definitely reduced

we do the same amount of heat cycles as you and there is really no way around it plus we rarely have dead chips

when cleaning the chip the heat is usually quick, and when melting the balls you dont go that hot since your using lead balls so its not as bad, finally when placing the chip you would not need to go as hot again due to the lead
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Old 03-19-2013, 12:44 AM   #18
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Agent24 View Post
The chip must be heated 4 times: to remove it, to clean it, to reball it, and to reflow it. Whether you are heating too much or for too long at each step is a different question.


If you are lifting pads, it may be that you did not heat enough when you removed the chip and it loosened them enough that when you started wicking you finished them off. It could also be that you overheated them instead.

With a DIY system this is quite possible, if it is not calibrated properly, or you are getting uneven heating.

Make sure you your temperatures are accurate and uniform as possible and you are following the proper reflow profile.


When cleaning the pads, you shouldn't need to "scrub" the pads with the wick. Just lay it down, apply heat, then remove. Move to the next area and repeat. Once you get the hang of it you might be able to start moving it around, but I think it's risky.

Overheating and physical stress are the enemy of all pads and traces! Make sure you have the area clean (lots of paste flux), a nice big clean wick, and a good iron.

I don't think you really need the solder bulb at all.
correct info ^^

you can help yourself by cleaning the board right after its removed or simply leave it preheated and start cleaning

this is useful if your iron is not suitable, but you should cover the area around the site since the components will be liquid
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Old 03-19-2013, 12:50 AM   #19
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonathanAnon View Post
I had a few HP Pavilions (GPU) and playstations come in with the same stupid ball grid array issues, but I'm reluctant to get involved in the process... I mean if they come from the factory and this happens to them after a couple of years what chance do you have with trying to work something at home...

It would be impossible to give any sort of guarantee when, in my opinion, the devices have a congenital defect that you cannot rectify... well, aside from trying to crap in extra heatsinks or fans to stop the chip from detaching itself..

Having said that, I did a reflow of a PS3 for a friend with a 15 euro heatgun, using Gilksy's tutorials on youtube.... And I was more surprised than anybody else when it worked..
While there are no guarantees there is increased longevity, the main problem is the solder combined with poor cooling

HPs are cheap thus they have the most issues
Panasonics are hella expensive and rarely have issues plus all chips are bga style since they dont want a chip falling out of a socket while its falling from an airplane yet they suffer very few bga issues

with a PROPER rework process and changing the solder from lead free to lead you can in fact have a long lasting machine

combine that with copper shims and mx4 compound you can get at least a few yrs

keep in mind that intel has announced not only gpu but cpu will now be bga
also the ps3 rsx is actually a pbga meaning it has bga on top of bga, the cell chip is still plain bga
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Old 03-19-2013, 03:03 AM   #20
ravenns
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Default Re: I said i'll never try reballing...

Thanks guys!
Very helpful!
Regarding my hommade machine... I use 2 temperature probes, and get even heat during preheat. When I apply above heating with my hot air station with a nozzle on it, I get slightly different temperatures on those two probes (~5*C). A few days ago I thought I should buy 2 more instruments, so I can cover all four spots around the chip.
A few months ago I bought a Kingbo flux, and couldn't beleive how easy it is to work with it. Before Kingbo, I used Chinese Amtec (fake), and all it did is damage... Tryed liquid flux from Check republic or Poland (don't know exactly) it did some good lifting, but Kingbo is THE KING!

About desoldering wick... I use (I guess) it's the goot wick - I know it is bad... I'll try today to do a laptop motherboard, and I'll get to all of You soon...

Yesturday I found a website which is selling this:
http://uk.farnell.com/itw-chemtronic...-bga/dp/892087
Is it good for cleaning?

Thank You again!
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