Soldering is out, press-fit is in – this trend is also evident for subminiature switches, the classic link between mechanics and electronics. There are good reasons for this development. Solder-free press-fitting helps to optimize production costs without the risk of compromising the quality of the connection.
With press-fitting, there are no failures due to mechanical changes to the component caused by thermal influences during soldering or by soldering bridges, cold solder joints, or flux residues. There is no need for further processing or cleaning steps.
The most important factor for achieving a good press-fit connection is the right combination of materials, design, and tolerances. The pre-centering of the component is another important factor that helps to guarantee a reproducible, high-quality process.
For subminiature switches, press-fit assembly is a useful addition to the tried-and-tested solder and cable connections. However, it takes a close cooperation between switch manufacturers and users to define suitable combinations of materials as well as appropriate press-fit tools and methods. If this is the case, using the press-fit technology achieves a true synergy effect with regards to the reliability of the connection and cost optimisation in production.