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Description: This hot-air rework station is great for professionals and hobbyists in need of tight temperature tolerances and large air flows. This unit displays a digital readout of the actual air temperature with a flow rate of up to 23L per minute. This very powerful unit can be used for multiple applications including standard SMD reflow/repair/removal, thermal IC stress testing, thermoplastic welding, and shrink-wrapping.

Dimensions: 224 x 126 x 110mm

Features:

  • Closed-loop temperature control
  • Heats up quickly
  • Anti-static design
  • Intelligent cooling system maintains airflow after the unit is powered off until the air temperature is below 100°C
  • Temperature adjustment range: 100 ~ 480°C
  • Handle length (including air line): 120cm
  • Noise: <40dB
  • 110VAC input

Includes:

  • 303D Hot Air Rework Station
  • Wand Holder
  • x2 Round Nozzle Tips

Documents:

Comments 103 comments

  • I need a bigger workbench.

    • Your workbench will never be the same. I cannot say enough good things about hot-air rework. These things rock and open up a bunch of new doors for prototyping (removing ICs, SMD IC bumping, etc). It’s a cool tool.

      • You mean it’s a hot tool?

      • agreed. as i said in the product post, i reflowed my nvidia BGA video processor in my laptop with one of these just last weekend… worked like a charm. you can do almost anything with these.

        • Which chip was it? I’ve got a Lenovo T61 with the Nvidia NVS chip (8400 gs). It has experienced the intermittent failure. I was looking at using the heat gun you folks sell to try a reflow. Do you think this hot air station would do a significantly better job? Thanks.

          • I also have Lenovo T61 but graphic is Intel Corporation Mobile GM965/GL960 Integrated Graphics Controller. I was wondering if it would be possible to exchange it for something more powerful ? Probably not. Anyway hot air station is nice but 110V and probably US plug ;)

          • I know its an old thread but I’ve recently had success with the T61 Nvidia issue by stripping the MB and placing it in the oven at 380F for 10min. I’ve seen others have success with this for other MBs, graphics cards, etc..

          • I think it was a 7600 something. Honestly, any kind of heat works. I’ve seen it done with hair dryers, blow torches, etc. All it needs is heat. The hot air rework is a lot easier, but you could use a hair dryer or the heaterizer…

        • Can you guys do a video showing how you do BGA? I’ve got an older one of these from you guys & would love to be able to place/solder BGA chips (since they’re usually the coolest ones), but am a bit unsure how to start.

          • that’s a tough one. it ‘can’ be done with a normal hot-air station, but it takes a LOT of practice to get it right. the correct way is with a BGA rework station.
            I just evenly heated the chip with a hot-air station, let it cool a bit, heated a bit more, let it cool, heated it a bit more, etc. and it worked.
            if you’re starting with a bare board and populating a BGA, it can be a lot harder. flux helps, but can also be really difficult to rinse out.

  • A very nice unit.

    I decided to get this one after using the stations we have here at work. (different brand) This one is every bit as good. A little large, but for what it does, it would be hard for it to be small. You will definitely want to practice on some scrap boards first, as it is very easy to get it too hot and delaminate your PCB! Once dialled in it is just like magic.

    It sits next to my metcal, and I think it’s every bit as useful. :)

  • This is a very nice tool and a good multitasker - well worth the space it takes up on your workbench. I bought the 303D 4 months ago to do SMT rework and I’ve done a little of that but it is also fantastic for heat shrink tubing and re-melting hot melt glue. I think I’ll try toasting marshmallows with it next. Cheers, Jay.

  • I’ve had this on backorder for quite awhile. What’s the ETA? I really don’t want to have to order it from somewhere else…

  • I want to buy this Hot-air Rework Station, but the day off, they have been all that remained, there is a date when you can buy this product?

  • Just the right price point for 2012 Free Day!

  • Is it feasible to use your Hot Air Rework Station 303D to weld plastics?

    • I have just now with this unit “repaired” a threaded plastic ring from a shower head ball joint, which split in half (axially) this morning. I kept airflow at 1 and turned it down to 320C to avoid browning and bubbling, and since the ring is several mm thick, I have no idea how deep into the seam it actually melted. I didn’t want to work from the inside because the threads wouldn’t have made it. So, it looks like crap and may snap again soon, and I might have saved around $6. Try it! (on something that’s trash anyway)

    • I’d imagine if you were to fashion a tip to get the width of delivered hot air down, you could melt plastic together - but you might be better served using a plastic epoxy or CA glues that will melt the types of plastic your looking to join. Saving that, the ‘sacrificial soldering iron’ idea seems solid.

    • Freaky question, I like it. I would say probably not. The width of air coming from the nozzle is good for ICs and PCBs, but may be too wide for joint welds. I’m not entirely sure what you’re doing, but if I was doing something like multi-unit construction, I would buy a soldering iron and sacrifice the tip and heater to the welding. Tell us more if you try it out.

  • Getting this in October for sure! Will go nicely with my Sparkfun soldering station.

  • Indicated dimensions (224 x 126 x 110mm) are not right. I just got this guy and the dimensions of the case are 245mm d x 158mm w x 138mm h, not including the handle on the top (31mm ) (or the knobs, etc).

  • Hi. That station will operate on a 127VAC power line?

    Thanks.

  • I’ll be honest, this thing scares the crap out of me. As much as I so badly want one, I think I’d melt my finger if I had one. :P

  • Has anyone modified to switch display from Celsius to Fahrenheit?

  • Could I use This With 220 VAC? If yes, I Think I Will Buy This One.

  • I just got one of these. Thanks for making it well and also affordable.

  • I received mine with a defective fuse holder… at an hundred bucks.. I cant really complain… Anyway,I replaced it and now it works fine!

  • This is also the perfect tool for precision melting of crayons!

  • Mine died after sitting in a closet for a year. Anyone have experience repairing these? For a while I had to slap the case to make the temperature display turn on, and the air heat up. But now no matter what I do, I just get cold air blowing out, with nothing on the temperature display. Sounds like a loose connection or bad solder joint somewhere, but where?

    • open the case and verify that the Microchip MCU is stil in the socket… It is a cheap socket and in vertical position. Slapping the case can only make it worse lol…

  • I got a problem with the outer hose.. is there a replacement part for this?

  • I just received one of these hot air rework stations and I had been putting off buying one for a while. I now realize that was a colossal mistake! The auto cooldown feature is awesome and the controls are spot on. I really don’t know how I did without this tool as I can throw away the junky harbor freight heat gun and quit borrowing my buddy’s plastic welder!

  • This is the best tool i have ever purchased … Its like magic make sure you get the sparkfun tweezers too and some helping hands. It is so nice to be able to control the temp of air that touches the part. Keep the warping down.. Thaks sparkfun!

  • There is an Europe version ( can work with 220 V ) for this ?

    • There are 220V hot air rework stations, but SFE doesn’t carry them.

      However, if you’re endeared to this particular product, and don’t necessarily want to shop around for a 220V version closer to you, see JRad’s comment on how to convert this product for 220V use. You could also try a 220V to 110v converter, but those can get pretty expensive.

      If you did want to get this, now would be a good time (for you) to do so, since shipping is free this week (and this being a heavy product, it tends to be pricey to ship - another reason they generally don’t carry 220V versions of these types of products).

  • Is this capable of handling 220-240v mains input voltage, or is it strictly 110v? It would be good to have a European version!

  • Amazing tool. It works well both to remove and solder parts. Great for recovering parts from old projects. Its easy to use and well built. Great value for money. I can’t imagine how I managed before!

  • Is there a 240v version, for Europe?

    • A 230V variant which is pretty similar (I think same OEM, these things are re-branded) is available as ZD939L in Europe from several sources for about the same price. One that ships cheaply to CH, DE an other European destinations is www.reichelt.de

      (Hope it is o.k. to post a link to a competitor, as you do not offer the 230V version and shipping your unit to Europe is really expensive…)

  • Any Idea when this will be back in stock or recommendations for similar rework stations?

  • I must say, Got this guys in the mail today and quite frankly haven’t been this excited about a tool since getting my O-scope! I have been desoldering components from several reclaimed boards. Now time to start sorting caps, resistors, ic’s, inductors, etc, etc. Really happy, Thanks Sparkfun!

  • I bought this almost a year ago and I do not regret it. This is such a great piece of equipment. After several circuits for work and personal I now prefer to use surface mount on all of my projects. Get some good paste! I prefer water soluble flux in my paste, then I clean the board in the sonic-cleaner at work. Though IPA can do the trick quickly with most water solubles.

  • Just read all the comments, saw the question asked, but no answer…will this unit work with the Aoyue nozzles? Thanks!

  • This can work directly on 240V!! (try at your own risk, and ONLY attempt this if you’re experienced)

    I reverse engineered the circuit, and found that most of the components should be able to handle 240V. Here’s the mains side of the circuit:

    Schematic

    The modifications required are circled in red. Basically all you need to do is swap out the transformer!

    First I carefully measured the circuit on 240V using a 100W incandescent light bulb to limit the current. All the voltages checked out, and nothing got hot or burnt. I then removed the light bulb, and checked that the station operated correctly.

    The heater element heats up extremely quickly, but since it’s temperature controlled, the higher voltage doesn’t seem to matter. However you must make sure the pump air speed isn’t turned above half power. There is a trimmer pot that sets the minimum airflow, so that needs to be turned down.

    Proof it works:

    Photo 1

    Photo 2

    Please remember mains voltage is lethal! Try this at your own risk, and be aware doing this could burn down your house, etc etc. Also since the circuit wasn’t designed for 240V, there’s no guarantee it won’t blow up eventually

  • Is this thing really a Sparkfun design or is it someone elses Hot Air Station with the Sparkfun logo on it?

  • so i can’t use in in europe in 230V AC ?

    • Not without a converter. For this product you could try swapping out the transformer inside, though. Would save you the converter - which you can’t even begin shopping around for without knowing the rated wattage for this station :)

  • Just rcved this, Here is a short review:

    It is a good tool for basic rework stuff. Heats quickly, cools very slowly. Already fixed a module (work $20) with fine pitch QFP that no amount of soldering iron/wick would fix, this thing will pay for itself in no time.

    My desk is full already but the tubing on this unit is long enough to put it in a far corner and still be usable.

    One con: The temp display is cheap and only fully visible from an angle (maybe it is just my unit?).

  • Looking to buy one of these but what do you guys use to protect the work desk from the heat?

    • Asbestos?

      Seriously though, when I do rework, it’s typically held in a third-hand of some sort to raise it off the work surface. You could also use a trivet, silicone pad, oven mitt, or other item from the kitchen designed for high-temperature use (don’t re-use it for food though!)

      • I’m looking at these but am also worried about the heat due to a special whiteboard paint on my desktop surface that is pretty expensive and I’m not sure how it will handle heat.

        The asbestos comment reminded me though of something I already have. Ceramic honeycomb blocks, they’re used to protect the work surface while soldering jewelry. Worth a look if you’re really worried about your work surface.

  • How well does this work with QFN parts. Anyone with experience?

  • Now if I remove an ic “44 pin” using this hot air will the ic pretty much be shot from over heating?

    • Personally, I find ICs very robust temperature-wise, and so think that your chip would probably be fine(as long as it is not running while desoldering).

  • is there a 220 volt model available.

    • No, but there is an option to use 110 appliances on a 220 circuit. You need this transformer. http://www.amazon.com/Voltage-Converter-From-220-240/dp/B001ES8YY6 It’s 18 dollars and it should work for this.

  • Just used one of these to reflow a 10 lead 3x5mm DFN and I was able to solve a short in about 30 minutes. Not bad for the first time using this tool, as it has basically paid for itself in the first use.

  • Just got mine today, yea… I should have invested in one of these a LONG time ago.

  • Just got this today, and for the price I couldn’t be happier. I was afraid that I would be disappointed with the build quality (as I have been with several tools that SparkFun sells), but honestly I think it’s just about where it should be. The readout is nice, the knobs work, it comes up to temperature pretty quickly.

    A word of warning though!

    The temperature control on this station is not the most sophisticated. I tested the output temperature with a thermocouple and at steady state it seems to hold the temperature to within 10-20 degrees of the setpoint: Good enough as far as I’m concerned though I wouldn’t call it “tight tolerance.” The real issue is that the controller has a tendency to DRASTICALLY overshoot the setpoint as it comes up to temperature. By up to or over 100 degrees! So if you are going from, say, 150 to 250, the temperature might briefly go as high as 350. Only for perhaps a few seconds before the controller catches up and brings it down, but long enough to damage components if you are not patient. There is the same behavior to a lesser degree when moving to a lower temperature.

    Again it is not an issue as long as you wait maybe 15 seconds after changing the temperature before using it - assuming what you are doing is temperature critical.

    Otherwise it looks like a great tool! I am excited to have it on my bench. :D

  • I just got this thing. I stuck a few magnets on there to hold my other nozzles.

  • Any idea when this will be back in stock?

  • Just used my Hot Rework Station(303D) for the first time and I must say this tool is AWESOME! Very quite, good size temp display. Also like the automatic cooling after shut down. This opens a new world for me.

  • I have a newbie general question regarding Hot Air Rework. I have recently bought this Hot Air Rework station to be able to bump ICs and remove them, etc. My question is how do semiconductors not burn out or fry under the heat? granted you are not applying heat directly to the chip, but I have always been told with conventional soldering not to keep the iron on a pin for any longer then you have to in order to protect the part. With applying ‘solder melting’ level of heat to all pins wouldn’t that be a problem? I ask this, but I also must admit that I have been doing some work with this unit and have not had any of these issues as of yet. I just am wondering how concerned I should be about this.

    • The IC package is built to be able to dissipate a good ammount of heat. Think about in a production environment where ICs are attached to boards in a reflow oven! While this is the case, it is still important to subject the component to the smallest amount of heat needed to accomplish the task. This is why a variable tempurature rework station is important! Consult your data sheet and set the tempurature accordingly. Working with hot air does require a bit of technique, which you will acquire over time. Practice on scrap boards and expect to fry a few chips along the way.

  • Where would one procure nozzles for this, do Aoyue nozzles fit?

  • Any idea when these will be back in stock?

  • Are there any oils or other gases (from heated plastics, resistors etc) that could come out with the hot air? Is the hot air (other than the obvious temperature issue) safe to breath?

  • There are tons of variations on the market, but two main types - The type using a Diaphragm pump like this one (been around longer), the other type using a brushless motor in the handle itself.

    Has anybody tried both and any advantages / disadvantages?

  • Anyone have a good tutorial for how to solder SMD parts using this hot air station? Do you just point the nozzle at the part and go, or is it necessary to use another heater to preheat the board first, and follow a specific heating/cooling profile? Also can I get away with pre-tinning the pads with normal solder, instead of solder paste? The paste seems like a pain in the butt since it needs to be kept refrigerated, and I don’t want to keep it in the kitchen with my dinner, or pay distributors extra money to overnight ship it in a cool pack.

    • I would like to know about the pretinning instead of paste like he said ^^^

      • The advantage to paste is that it’s… a paste. Which means that it allows the part to sit level on the pads. You can pre-tin the pads with an iron and a touch of solder but if you have a tight-pitched part it may not want to sit on top of all of the little solder bumps the right way. It can be done for parts that have a small lead count. I solder ATMega328s by pre-tinning the pads with an iron then heating the pads in a circular motion with the hot-air while placing the IC with tweezers.

  • What is the power consumption at 120VAC ? I need one for 230VAC so will need to run it from a drop down transformer.

  • Just got this thing and it is great! I ‘ocasionally’ make errors when soldering parts onto boards and removing them with a soldering iron and solder wick is a pain and if its an IC its usually not even worth attempting. I just powered this baby up and removed about 10 parts in 2 minutes including a 48 pin LQFP which I never would have even attempted before. Oh - btw, it also melts desk protectors nicely. :)

  • This looks like a rebagged Aoyue 850A, only more expensive. Is this some other variety that is actually any better?

    • Nah, if anything it is a rebadged Yihua YH-850AD. But, Sparkfun has it at a great price, so why not get the one that says SparkFun on it and support these guys! :)

    • Correct me if I’m wrong, but the Aoyue 850A has no digital readout.

  • Do you know the VA rating?

  • At my school we have a hot air rework station. (Zefertronix i think) We have used to fix our ESC’s to Xbox 360’s (and build or robot communication boards now and then for our robots)

  • No airflow meter on this one like the Aoyue 852 you had before… :(

    • I have a 968 with a airflow meter, and I never use the meter. Just turn it up to where it’s working for you. I can usually tell just by how it sounds.

      • What about the temp meter, do you use that or is it the same deal as the airflow meter - i.e. you just set it based on how it’s working?

  • Now I have to convince my boss that we need for our lab. Shouldn’t be too hard. :)

    • I am not kidding you, you need one for you lab. These are amazing. Tell your boss some random guy on the internet said so.
      But really, we got one at work, and then I got one at home because it was so awesome. I use it for soldering even when I could use an iron. Its 10x better for so many things.

    • “Break” something that needs hot air to fix.
      (*it helps if the broken item costs more to replace than a Benjamin.)
      :)

  • Does this replace the other Hot-Air rework station? the HR906? Dang, I liked the combo hot air/soldering iron…

  • Only if there was a 220VAC version…

    • Ive always wondered why people who need a 220vac version when you can just use a converter. Is there a reason? They don’t cost all that much.

      • You could use a transformer, but higher wattage ones do cost about the same as this whole product, at least in country I live in.

        • so how much current does it need? Makes looking for a converter a lot easier, and hopefully cheaper. I’d be keen for a 240 volt but a convert if its cheap is an option.

  • That box is amazing.


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