Wash-Aways dissolvable spacers are organic polymer rings, wafers, rectangles, and blocks that disintegrate in hot water or alcohol. Dissolving standoffs locate and reinforce PCB components during soldering operations. After soldering, Wash-Aways dissolve in most water or alcohol baths that remove solder flux. Consistent component spacing allows free circulation of air, mechanical protection, optimum filleting, and greater accessibility for inspection, cleaning, and conformal coating. Unlike nylon, phenolic, or metal spacers, dissolving spacers do not remain on PCB assemblies or require manual removal. Wash-Aways are available in a wide range of sizes and shapes to accommodate a variety of components, including transistors, capacitors, LEDs, potentiometers, integrated circuits, and other components used in printed circuit board assembly.
Most baths that remove solder flux, including water and alcohol based solvents, will dissolve Wash-Away spacers. Hot water (>140°F/60°C) dissolves Wash-Aways faster.
Moderate, short-term exposure to most fluxes will not affect Wash-Aways. Glycol ether based fluxes are least destructive to Wash-Aways. Extended saturation in chlorinated solvents and alcohol-based fluxes may weaken Wash-Aways.
Wash-Aways should be stored in a dry area. An air-conditioned office environment is best but not absolutely necessary. Spacers should be kept in closed containers when not in use.
Wash-Aways are designed to withstand exposure to solder temperatures. Refrigeration is neither required nor recommended, as this will cause condensation and moisture contamination if improperly handled.
Although similar products are called “sugar spacers,” “salt spacers,” or “soap spacers,” Wash-Aways do not contain sugar, salt, or soap. Wash-Aways are made with a water-soluble polymer.
Most spacers are selected or designed for specific components. Please contact MSI to discuss the details of your application or to request samples. We will also conduct free evaluations of components for spacing with our Wash-Aways.