It seems to me that the focus should be on the the most prolific uses of Pb.
As mentioned, car batteries are substantial, especially if talking about
electric ones.  (Metal hydride batteries have come a long way, but there are
still quite a few issues with their long term reliability and safety.)
What's next? Wheel balancing weights and radiator end caps?  Soon they'll be
going after fishing weights and shotgun shells, not to mention batteries for
trolling motors.  It seems strange, but many of these processes are far less
susceptable to reliability problems than and have far less impact than
failed soldered electrical connections.  You can stuff just about anything
into a shotgun shell case!  Have any of you ever compared the solderability
of copper water tubing using leaded and unleaded solder?  The unleaded does
a much worse job in my experience.  However, because it is for drinking, I
can see suffering with poor solderability to keep it out of the water.
(Note: there are other ways to achieve this without giving up the lead.)

Do any of you remember when the took the Cadmium out of silver solder?  None
of the newer alloys have ever come close to the wetting action Cadmium
provided.  And the amont of silver solder used each year is insignificant
compared to the amount in NiCd batteries.

Do you remember the men runnung ariound in space suits charging $100,000 USD
or more to demolish a small house because the found traces on asbestos
sealed in linoleum floor tile that had been waxed over for 50 years? Or
howabout ALAR on Apples?  Or all the people that dropped dead from mercury
wetting on reed relays.  DON'T TOUCH THAT THERMOSTAT!! It might have a bead
of Mercury rolling back and forth in a sealed glass tube!!!  I happen to
live in the gold country.  My friends pan and sluce for gold in the local
rivers and do quite well for them selves.  They constantly extract
significant quantities of metallic mercury (pints) along with the gold.
(Mercury is heavier and wets gold, so it also concentrates in the bottoms of
dredges (and rivers).  These rivers directly feed the drinking water system.
Regular tests show no significant or detremental levels of mercury in any of
the connected systems, or the fish coming from these rivers.  Maybe the
difference in inertness of liquid mercury versus mercury salts isn't
understood by the activists.

Hybrid modules are often soldered with a higher melting point alloy so that
the leads can be soldered without melting the internal connections.  This
has often been a sensitive process since the internal parts are subjected to
higher temperatures.  Semiconductor failure rates and permanent parameter
degradation increase exponentially with temperature, causing hybrids to have
lower (sometimes unacceptable) residual failure rates and performance.
Raising the soldering temperatures will make this significantly worse, as
this is already often on the edge.

I think I am going to stock up on some 63/37 rosin core solder for home use
while it can still be bought.  I just hope they don't send me to jail
someday for possessing illegal substances, or dealing in it if I fix
someone's antique radio without a special HazMat liscense!

Don't get me wrong.  It's good we don't breathe massive quantities of
carbontetrachloride any more, or dust huge acreage with tons of chlordane.
Sure, you probably shouldn't paint the baby's bedposts with something toxic,
but what about the bottoms of boats an buoys where you need to keep
barnacles from growing?  The meat bees (yellow jackets; wasps) were
especially bad this year.  The only thing that ever really worked was a
granulated poison you put into a small amount to meat (catfood, tuna, etc.)
in a protective feeder.  The wasps took it back to their nest and did the
trick with extremely little poison in a very short time.  Its now illegal in
California, so this summer I have seen nearly a dozen people stung, compared
to past years in which there were essentially zero.  How many people with
bee allergies have been hospitalized or killed by this stupidity?  We need a
balance.  Maybe this pison was being used too widely for commercial
agriculture, but this was a very small use.

Common sense no longer prevails; only invasive legislation promulgated by
special interests for political purposes and applied indescriminantly in
expensive and detrimental ways.  The debateable growth in the ozone hole
accompanying the South Atlantic Anomaly was arguably not a beneficial
ecological change, and was possibly exacerbated by increases in chlorine and
fluorine making their way into the upper atmosphere.  However, it must be
noted that 1) this all happened just as the patents for a wide range of
these "freons" (containing bound chlorofluorocarbons) were expiring, 2) some
of the most vocal advocate were the chemical companies owning these patents,
and 3) these same chemical companies just "happened" to have a new line of
refrigerant gasses (already newly patented) which could save the planet.  So
what was the total integrated cost to the public (you and I) in forcing
rapid conversion of preexisting refrigeration systems over to the new
refrigerant gasses?  A lot of fortunes were made by this premeditated
manipulation.  Change can be good provided premature acceleration does not
bring other serious problems.

Jeff Condit

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Bagotronix Tech Support" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "Protel EDA Forum" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Sent: Friday, August 13, 2004 2:20 PM
Subject: Re: [PEDA] tests for Pb in solder

> > One last thought, several people have pointed out that certain classes
> > equipment will be exempt i.e. Military, medical etc but if all the
> assemble
> > companies have switched to lead free who is still going to do lead based
> > assembly (and at what premium)? I know that once we have gone lead free
> > will probably never be able/ willing to go back.
> "Lead-ful" is a term I've coined for lead-containing PCB assemblies.  As
> opposed to "lead-free".
> I think lead-ful will become a manufacturing niche.  The article that
> posted a link to predicts that many shops will go out of business if they
> don't change to lead-free.  However, it could go the opposite way.  Those
> lead-ful shops may experience a solid market niche for all of those
> automotive, industrial, and military items for which one wants to risk
> failure.  It will make obtaining components more difficult, however, and
> there will be entire categories of components that will not be usable in
> lead-ful assemblies because they only come in lead-free versions.  For
> example, want to use that nice new ARM chip in your embedded design?
> it, it's available only in lead-free finish.  Want to use that cool new
> 20-bit audio codec?  Nope, it only comes in lead-free.
> Still lead-ful and loving it...
> Best regards,
> Ivan Baggett
> Bagotronix Inc.
> website:
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Peter Smith" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> To: "'Protel EDA Forum'" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> Sent: Friday, August 13, 2004 3:52 AM
> Subject: Re: [PEDA] tests for Pb in solder
> > My last email seemed to take over 12 hours to appear on the list, if
> > one is the same its going to be a slow conversation :-o
> >
> > >You're right, I haven't noticed the difference in a measly 3-4 years.
> >
> > I agree with your thoughts but it does indicate that it's not a complete
> > disaster. I know several people with Sony TV's that are over 20 years
> > and still going strong, I hope Sony (and the others) are convinced that
> the
> > change will not affect the long term reliability.
> >
> > >I like Sony VCRs (VHS, not Beta) because they are easy to setup and
> > >program.
> > >But it seems they've given me a reason not to buy anymore.
> >
> > Again I agree but you will find that any stuff made in Japan is now
> probably
> > lead  free and they are starting to spread, a quick search on Goggle
> > yesterday indicated that a couple of Sony plants in Mexico are also
> > completely lead free and have been for several years.
> >
> > One last thought, several people have pointed out that certain classes
> > equipment will be exempt i.e. Military, medical etc but if all the
> assemble
> > companies have switched to lead free who is still going to do lead based
> > assembly (and at what premium)? I know that once we have gone lead free
> > will probably never be able/ willing to go back.
> >
> > Regards,
> > Peter Smith
> >
> > Raster Vision Ltd
> > Unit 1
> > Crundalls
> > Gedges Hill
> > Matfield
> > Tonbridge
> > Kent
> > UK
> > TN12 7EA
> >
> > tel: +44 (0) 1892 722 228
> > fax: +44 (0) 1892 724 228

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