23 April 2023

CPB S160 Silicone Soldering Mat Kit

 In the future, I would like to develop new skills and experience in making and repairing electronics.  Since I like to keep my workspace as organized as I can I decided to invest in something that would help with that. This is eventually what I came up with. 

This is an ESD (Electro Static Discharge) 17.8" X 11.8" high temp soldering mat. As you can see it has several storage compartments built in so that you have a convenient place to store tools and parts. You can check it out right here: CPB S160 Silicone Soldering Mat Kit. I paid $18 for it and it arrived on my doorstep the next afternoon. 

The soldering mat came with three pairs of tweezers so that you can get in and handle small parts like SMT components. In the not-too-distant future I plan on learning to work with tiny SMT parts so I am sure that these tweezers will defentally come in handy.   

An ESD bracelet came with the mat so that you will have a smaller chance at zapping your electronics with a static discharge. I have destroyed a couple of parts this way so I know first hand that you need to be careful. You don't want to let the magic smoke out of your parts. 

In the center of the mat is a nice flat area to work on your PSB projects. Here is an LPF and BPF for a uSDX SOTA Quad Band QRP Transceiver. Someday this will be creating some RF at a park near me. I might even do a POTA (Patio On The Air) activation or two with it. The future has yet to be written.  
Along the right side of the mat are several compartments that were molded in. There is three build in magnets to help you keep track of those screws that like to wonder around. 
Across the top is a large compartment that is just large enough to hold a few tools. The small holes across the top are for your precision screwdrivers. Just pop the tip in one of the holes and those important screwdrivers are always within easy reach and organized so that you don't have to look at all f your screwdrivers to find the one that you need. 

As you can see there are many compartments to keep you organized. There are places to keep all of the screws and tiny parts for the project that you are making. The mat turned out to be a bit thicker than I thought that it would be. In the top left corner, there are three part boxes with lids on them. The pic that I took there turned out to be very blurry, but I'm sure that I will show them in future projects. This mat is supposed to be heat resistant enough that you can hold a lighter to it and it will do no harm. Forgive me for not doing that, I don't want to burn a hole in a nice soldering mat. Just don't have the funds to destroy something just to test it. 

I give this mat a solid 5 stars. For the price, it is of good quality and you also get the ESD bracelet and the tweezers. I would recommend this to a friend which is what I am doing with this post. If you get one for yourself, tell me your thoughts about it. 

Drop a comment in the comment section below or email me at Aaron@K5ATG. 
Be Safe
Aaron K5ATG

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