element14 and modding extraordinaire Ben Heck use a bit of reverse engineering to transform an old-school InfraWave oven into an engineer’s ultimate reflow tool on the latest episode of “The Ben Heck Show.”
The latest segment covers the many intricate steps required to build a reflow oven, from deconstructing an InfraWave oven, to attaching a thermocouple, to mounting the solid state relay (SSR) control. Special guest Chris Kraft also stops by to give a hands-on lesson in pairing an SSR with an Arduino Max6675 integrated circuit to help gauge the oven’s temperature.
“I had a lot of fun with this show for a number of reasons,” said Ben. “Not only was I able to hang out and collaborate with my good pal, Chris Kraft, but together we were able to engineer a staple in any design engineer’s ‘tool belt’ – a handy reflow oven for those hard-to-mount components.”
The final build is a budget-friendly solder oven featuring an LCD screen and controller case that is both creative and handy; enabling engineers to easily apply small surface-mount components to PCB circuit boards that generally can’t be done by hand.
“Ben’s latest project uses a bit of creativity and engineering resourcefulness to turn an ordinary oven into an extremely useful tool,” said Kevin Yapp, chief marketing officer, Premier Farnell. “It shows you there are no limits to innovation when you combine a good design idea with helpful peer collaboration.”
Fans of the show episode are invited to join the discussion online at element14 to enter for a chance to win Ben’s custom soldering oven for hours upon hours of soldering fun.