In case you haven’t noticed, when dealing with electronics, you’ll be picking lots of small things up, and it only gets harder when dealing with tiny SMD components. This is where it’s important to have the right tool for the job. And the right tool is usually a good pair of tweezers.
Tweezers for Every Task
Hello, how are you going? My names’ Sam from Core Electronics and today we’re going to be taking a look at tweezers! That’s right, we’re taking a look at some tools that are vital for a really good work bench. So, what’s so important about tweezers? Well, first of all, you shouldn’t just go around using the average tweezers that you use you know, to pick splinters out of your feet or, you know, scrape under your toenails things like that. Because chances are they’re just going to be generic metal tweezers and for electronics work you need something really good to pick up the fine components. Now what are we looking for for a good pair of tweezers for electronics work? Because in electronics, in case you haven’t noticed, we need to pick stuff up and grab fine and delicate components and small parts all the time so it goes a long way to have a really good set or two of tweezers in your workbench and your collection of tools.
So what are we looking for? Well, first off we’re looking for some that are anti-static. Now what this means is they’re not going to transfer static discharge on to sensitive components because say you’re dealing with a Raspberry Pi Board, the GPIO pins on a Raspberry Pi are quite sensitive to static damage and discharge and if you accidentally give them a shock you could damage the pin or the whole board rendering it a worthless coaster, which isn’t what you want. So an anti-static rating is perfect, it’s really a must when you’re working with electrical components. You don’t have to spend very much, all of these cost around $5 or $6 and we’re going to take a look at a few different options.
So first up we’ve got these and these are from Adafruit, they’re from a brand called Vetus and they’re awesome. They’re extremely fine tipped tweezers, in fact so fine you’ll find they’re quite sharp so be careful when working with them. But they’ve got a nice matt black finish with some stainless steel tips that are hardened so they’re not going to bend and they’re anti-magnetic along with anti-static so perfect for working with sensitive and delicate electronic components. You can see they’re quite nice and fine tipped for picking up really really tiny parts, you can get these in the curved variety here or with straight noses as well. They’re handy for getting in to different hard to reach places and come with a nice little silicone cover.
Now next up we’ve got this variety from Sparkfun and these are called Cross Locking or Cross Locked tweezers because as you notice with these ones normally they’re held open by the tension in the metal and you squeeze to close them but with these ones the needle handles go across each other which means that they’re being forced closed by the tension in the metal when you’re not squeezing them which is really good if you want to grab hold of things. So say you want to pick up these tweezers simply grab a hold, open them up and then let go and they’ll give you a really really secure grip which is awesome, and again you can get these in a curved variety or the straight variety. They’re ESD Electro Static Discharge safe, they have a nice coating on them which prevents that.
And last up we’ve got something a bit different, we’ve got these probe tweezers. Now what are these? Well, they’re simply probes that connect up to your multi meter so you can measure voltage or current, different things like that but they have these two little probes on the end of the tweezers there which is super handy especially for surface mount devices where you want to get in. It might be already soldered to the board and you’re doing some trouble shooting. You can simply get in and put the probes on either side of the component and it’ll give you a read out. Normally if you’re measuring these kinds of things you’re doing a bit of circuit limbo where you’ve got one probe here and one probe here and you’re trying to hold the circuit in place and read the multimeter! Well, no more, get yourself a pair of these, so so useful.
So that’s it guys, a quick wrap on some of the best tweezers you can get for your workbench, how and why you should use them, a few different varieties. Generally getting a whole set is the best way to go. These will only cost you $5 or $6 dollars each so you can grab a couple and keep some in the tool box, on the work bench wherever you go. That’s all for today guys, have a good one :-)