Press-fit technology

Press-Fit technology for Printed Circuit Boards

Press-Fit, image from Biezl

Press-fit technology is a solder-free electrical-mechanical connection technology between component and circuit board. For this purpose, a press-fit pin is pressed into the through-hole plating of the circuit board. At the contact points between the pin and the hole wall, gas-tight zones are created by cold welding the contact materials.

As an alternative to THT or SMT soldering, the press-fit technology helps to avoid thermal stress and ensures a high level of reliability of the connection and (in the solid pin version) a high current carrying capacity.

Press-fit technology requires a low tolerance of the hole diameter and is therefore special production.

You should define an extra layer for press-fit technology and output this as an extra drilling program at Gerber export. ODB++ data contain the information automatically! If you would like to use our data import service (e.g. for EAGLE, KiCad, ...) please inform us of the relevant layer.

Advantages of press-fit technology:

  • High reliability of the connection with extremely low FIT value (Failure in Time)
  • No thermal stress on the connection components thanks to solderless assembly
  • High holding forces: pins make gas-tight contact in the metallized drill holes
  • Efficient assembly process: press-in process using a toggle lever or pneumatic press

For press-fit technology, please send us the manufacturer's data sheet together with your circuit board data and activate the "press-fit technology" option in our circuit board calculator. Press-fit should be defined in an extra layer. A tinned end surface is recommended for gold-plated pins (e.g. chemical tin, HAL lead-free).

Surfaces for press-fit technology

Press-fit technology can basically be produced with all end surfaces. Due to the low tolerance, our customers typically choose a chemical surface, e.g. chem. Gold (recommended) or chem. Tin. HAL lead-free (hot air solder levelling) is an alternative. The surface may already be specified directly by the connector manufacturer.

It is not recommended to combine gold-plated pins with chemical gold surface, as this can lead to increased press-in forces. Either pin or circuit board surface should be tinned. Only then, there is sufficient slippage during the press-in process.

Press-fit Parameters

 Toleranceon Requestmin. distance to SMD
 Final diameter Ø ≤ 6.0mm
Tolerance±0.05on Request+0.1mm/-0mmmin. distance to SMD2mm
 Final diameter Ø > 6.0mm
Tolerance±0.075on Request±0.05min. distance to SMD2mm

From a final diameter of approx. 6.0mm (depending on the surface) the holes are milled, not drilled.

Please indicate the final diameter in your design and send us the manufacturer's data sheet with your order.

Please ensure a minimum distance of 2mm to neighbouring SMD components in order to avoid critical mechanical loads when assembling.