Tin Whiskers

I’m not a big fan of the gradual banning of lead. Sure, I love kids and all that. However, the enviromentalists take everything too far with what they clothe in “for the greater good” arguments. It’s really an anti-capitalist movement. And, I’ve been trying for a long time to figure out what is pro-job about being anti-capitalist.

I can understand how lead in paint which breaks down slowly over time, becomes chips which get smaller and eventually turn into dust. It makes sense not to put lead in paint because we’ll eventually breathe it. However, no matter how hard I try to kick the dirt around on the floor, electronic circuits soldered with leaded solder or lead free solder don’t jump into my mouth. Maybe the difference is hard for some to see? What is it like to wield the power to ban an element on the perodic table?

So, on to tin whiskers…..

RoHS is an EU (European Union) directive that has become enforced law. RoHS means “Restriction of Hazardous Substances”. The problem is little consideration given to what is a Hazardous use of a substance and what is not. I don’t hear reports of children eating circuit boards or solder joints in wires for example. Is it about health and public safety, or about creating a portal by which government and regulatory bodies can exert command and control over huge industries and the influx of goods into a country?

Since the EU has issued RoHS directives, lead has been removed from most solders and from the tinning on electronic leads. Pure tin is now used for almost all electronic component lead tinning. Over time it forms whiskers of tin which are thinner than a human hair. They are only one crystal in thickness and they reach out and touch leads of other components. It’s often the reason why today’s TV’s and other electronics (including our RC gear) doesn’t last as long as yesterday’s. Failure of expensive satellites have been attributed to lead-free tinning of leads causing tin whiskers. It’s our punishment for letting the “zero tolerance crowd get traction and get this nonsense pushed into law all over the world. When you get a chance, in any way possible, do your part, do something about it.

Here are some great links, good reading and photos of our gift from the enviromentalists, “tin whiskers”.

I’m still looking for examples of children that were poisoned from eating circuit boards and wires.

Find lots of tech article links at: NASA Tin Whisker Homepage

An excellent blog post by Steve Smith: Tin Whiskers

1.4 Million Results on Google

As long as possible, you’ll always be able to get “real” solder from Radical RC: Solder Pastes & Supplies


Dayton Hamvention 2012 May 18-20

Hamvention Aerial View
Hamvention Aerial View

Yes, everything you see in the lot is a vendor booth with the exception of the left most triangle. The entire building is full. Several RC vendors with cross-over products attend this event.

Audio Commercial for Hamvention

Hamvention Home Page

I had a ball here one year ago. Not exactly modeling, however, it’s a tinker’s delight. You need to attend this event once in your lifetime. Lots of radio, computer, antenna and misc here. You can see it in one day if you keep those feet moving fast all day.


Radical RC

Radical RC is located at:  5339 Huberville Ave, Dayton Ohio  45431-1250.  937-256-7727

GPS Geeks: Latitude N+39° 47′ 10.62″, Longitude W-84° 6′ 51.61″

Website: Radical RC (http://www.radicalrc.com)

Hours: Mon-Tue-Wed 9-5pm,  Thur & Fri 9-7pm, Saturday 10-2pm,  Closed Sunday
Booth at ModelRama?: YES

Our shop is directly across from the Airfroce Museum.  Almost driectly across from the flag pole.  When you exit Woodman Dr (also called Wright Brothers Parkway) onto Springfield Street, the Air Force Museum grounds are on your right.  On your left on a parallel road (Huberville Ave) there is a small neigborhood.  There are several commercial buildings on this road.  Radical RC is one of these buildings.  It is a single story 3 unit 3600 square foot block building.  There is usually a large white trailer parked in front of or beside the building.  There is no sign visible from the street.   Just find 5339 Huberville and your there.

What you’ll find:  One of the country’s most unique suppliers.  You won’t see much of anything from the big two (Horizon or Hobbico).  You’ll find all the supplies you need to really build a model airplane and of course all the model electronics we are world famous for.  This is a “Flying Machines” shop.

Visual of the Area:

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