jamesh
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:47 am

myisland wrote:I left it in the garage to air out. Just checked it and it still smells really toxic. It burns the sinus so that's more than just unpleasant. Did the Raspberry-pi police change my topic title? They were almost giving these boards away so maybe there was a bad batch.
Hmm. Not heard of any other seeing this issue, and I have just checked with the guy who deals with manufacturer, and he hasn't heard of anything either. Can you confirm the model, where you are and where you got it. Serial number would help also.

Yes we did change the title (No, we are not police, we are moderators. We've never done the police training. Look on us a bit like a PCSO).
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fabien707
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Jul 27, 2017 5:37 pm

Hi all,

I recently bought a pi 3 from Amazon coming from RS (I have bought and use other pi's before (pi1, pi2, pi3)). This board has a very very unpleasant smell. I studied electronic 10 years before and never had an electronic board with such a smell :-(. I am used to soldering. Last pi 3 I ordered with no smell was from element14. I think I will send this board back to amazon. Maybe a bad batch ?

Best regards,

Fabien.

Heater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Jul 27, 2017 6:05 pm

I have three brand new Raspi 3 here. From element14 bought in Fry's Electronics San Jose.

Sniff, sniff. Nothing. Except that faint plasticy smell of FR4 printed circuit board and flux residue perhaps.

Also picked up three official Pi cases from Fry's.

Sniff, sniff, Nothing. Except that faint whiff of plastic.

I think this thread is a wind up. An exercise in getting millions of people around the world to sniff their Raspi's

:)
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

Heater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Jul 27, 2017 6:09 pm

Fabien.

I think you should send your smelly Pi to The Raspberry Pi Foundation head quarters so we can get an independent assessment of this issue.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

BeauSlim
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Mon Jul 31, 2017 10:21 am

Just googled to see why my new pi3 smells and found this thread. Maybe a lack of rinsing or something at the factory in a recent batch? I've worked in IT for 25 years, and this is definitely a much stronger chemical smell than normal.

I can only compare the smell to some really cheap plastic item's I've ordered from China in the past, and which got tossed in the garbage right away because of the odour. I've had it for a couple weeks now and it's still quite strong.

It says Made in PRC. Came as part of an MCM kit. Purchased in Canada. Works fine.

UPDATE: I finally had a chance to open my case up and have a good look. Quite a bit of gunk between the larger pins on the bottom of the board where the USB, Ethernet and GPIO are soldered in. I'm not big on the whole DIY hardware thing, but I assume it's flux? Cleaned most of it away with a Q-tip.

Ninelocks
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Sun Sep 24, 2017 6:10 am

Ditto 2. I've worked with 3 Pi3 boards this week and the small is very very strong.

The only time Ive had an electronics related smell anything like this is when a PCB has been burned.

I have just reverted a project back to to a pi2 , opened the windows, and banished the pi3 to the garage.:-)

RepoX Ray
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Nov 01, 2017 7:43 am

I also have purchased a Rasp 3 B from Amazon, (branded box from RS) and it has this persistent smell of fried electrolithic capacitors.

But it works, yes, but it still the smell is here after one week of power up.

If you from Raspberry Foundation plan to take some action about it, please let me know.

BR
RepoX

SafferPi
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Tue Nov 14, 2017 10:50 pm

USB PORTS GIVING OFF very noxious and persistent smell.

Raspberry Pi 3 Model B V1.2
from Amazon in Canada (mid 2017)
Cpuinfo serial is 8zeros followed by de95cb41
Made in UK
Copyright 2015.
White qr code says 18/04
Number under the GPIO solder points is
KCEMC1 1707
94V-0F1 C5

The acidic, biting, plastic, vinyl smell is not a PCB board, solder nor rosin smell.
This smell is more like that cheap plastic toy you won't let your kids touch because it makes your hands stink when you hold it.

NRPi (Noxious) stench is definitely only coming from the USB ports. Mine are marked EDAC.
The black plastic in the USB ports is probably the root cause.
The Pi3 is otherwise very high quality product and operates nicely.

Thanks myisland for starting this thread
Thanks Fabien707 for standing up also
Thanks BeauChamp for stating your facts.
Please give your ports a quick wiff and tell me I'm right.
I got a nosebleed from sniffing +- 20 times.
So just one wiff of each area of the board (at your own risk) should confirm.

I'm going to put my Pi ports out in the sun and cover the rest of the board with foil, until the plasticisers or softener solvents gas-off completely. Where I live its not easy to simply return the unit.

jamesh
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:02 am

SafferPi wrote:
Tue Nov 14, 2017 10:50 pm
USB PORTS GIVING OFF very noxious and persistent smell.

Raspberry Pi 3 Model B V1.2
from Amazon in Canada (mid 2017)
Cpuinfo serial is 8zeros followed by de95cb41
Made in UK
Copyright 2015.
White qr code says 18/04
Number under the GPIO solder points is
KCEMC1 1707
94V-0F1 C5

The acidic, biting, plastic, vinyl smell is not a PCB board, solder nor rosin smell.
This smell is more like that cheap plastic toy you won't let your kids touch because it makes your hands stink when you hold it.

NRPi (Noxious) stench is definitely only coming from the USB ports. Mine are marked EDAC.
The black plastic in the USB ports is probably the root cause.
The Pi3 is otherwise very high quality product and operates nicely.

Thanks myisland for starting this thread
Thanks Fabien707 for standing up also
Thanks BeauChamp for stating your facts.
Please give your ports a quick wiff and tell me I'm right.
I got a nosebleed from sniffing +- 20 times.
So just one wiff of each area of the board (at your own risk) should confirm.

I'm going to put my Pi ports out in the sun and cover the rest of the board with foil, until the plasticisers or softener solvents gas-off completely. Where I live its not easy to simply return the unit.
Thanks for the information on the board, that should allow us to determine where and when it was made.

I certainly would NOT expect repeated sniffing of the USB ports, or indeed any part of the Pi, to cause nosebleeds. This might be a symptom of something else, so I would suggest getting some medical advice, just in case.

I've checked all the Pi's I have on my desk - quite a few - and none exhibit any untoward odour.
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Heater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:15 am

Would somebody with a smelly Pi please send it to the Raspberry Pi foundation for evaluation and tracing.

Then we can get to the bottom of this story. Which quite frankly I find hard to believe.

Or, any one with a smelly Pi that is making their head explode is welcome to send them to me. For ...err.. "evaluation".

The practice of USB port sniffing is not to be encouraged :)
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

jamesh
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:41 am

Heater wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:15 am
Would somebody with a smelly Pi please send it to the Raspberry Pi foundation for evaluation and tracing.

Then we can get to the bottom of this story. Which quite frankly I find hard to believe.

Or, any one with a smelly Pi that is making their head explode is welcome to send them to me. For ...err.. "evaluation".

The practice of USB port sniffing is not to be encouraged :)
We can trace from the information above. If necessary we will ask anyone with a smelly Pi to send it in, but we need to do some assessment of the issue first, since we've never encountered it.
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Dmitry0xFF
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Feb 07, 2018 2:59 pm

jamesh wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:41 am
Heater wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:15 am
Would somebody with a smelly Pi please send it to the Raspberry Pi foundation for evaluation and tracing.

Then we can get to the bottom of this story. Which quite frankly I find hard to believe.

Or, any one with a smelly Pi that is making their head explode is welcome to send them to me. For ...err.. "evaluation".

The practice of USB port sniffing is not to be encouraged :)
We can trace from the information above. If necessary we will ask anyone with a smelly Pi to send it in, but we need to do some assessment of the issue first, since we've never encountered it.
Are there any news about it?
I have just bought a new Raspberry Pi 3B and it also smells extremely toxic. Even after a week online. I feel light toxic smell when I am entering the room (20 square meters) with this RPi, so you can imagine the strength of the smell.
I also have RPi B+ and it doesn't smell at all.

Heater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Feb 07, 2018 8:20 pm

That's the problem. We can't imagine it. Having never experienced this smelly Pi phenomena. Nor any other smelly electronic goods.

I would have thought that if smelly Pi were coming off the production line then it would be noticed there soon enough. They have thousands of them passing through every day.

Where did you get this smelly Pi from? Where was it made?

I still find the whole idea very hard to believe.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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B.Goode
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Feb 07, 2018 8:50 pm

I have just bought a new Raspberry Pi 3B and it also smells


There is an invitation here from a Moderator acting as a representative of the Raspberry Pi Foundation to submit details that would allow the issue to be investigated - viewtopic.php?f=63&t=184527&p=1270409#p1185200

That invitation does not seem to have been accepted, certainly not publically via these forums.

Maybe pursuing the matter calmly with the RPF is less satisfying than throwing out unsubstantiated allegations of toxicity?

Heater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Feb 07, 2018 9:05 pm

What does it mean to "smell toxic"?

There are plenty of very toxic things that smell really nice. Anyone ever sniffed a bottle of cyanide? I have. Smells likes almonds. Mothers home cooking.

Then there are toxic things that are really dangerous because you cannot smell them.

I'm sure you can think of many things that smell really bad but aren't generally regarded as toxic.

I don't buy this story at all. No more than the guys that claim to get headaches from the "WiFi waves" of a Pi 3.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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solar3000
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Feb 07, 2018 9:21 pm

Heater wrote:
Wed Feb 07, 2018 9:05 pm
....

Anyone ever sniffed a bottle of cyanide? I have. Smells likes almonds. Mothers home cooking.
I love inhaling cyanide. BTW you're still alive after sniffing that?

Can't believe we're still on this topic.

I would have washed it or tossed it. It costs too much to ship it.
Antikythera

Heater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Wed Feb 07, 2018 10:11 pm

solar3000,
BTW you're still alive after sniffing that?
So my senses tell me.

Mind you, that was over four decades ago. The whole cyanide sniffing experience was presided over my mother who worked in a chemistry lab at the time and was very careful about such things.

I also survived the experiments us kids did with mercury. Without mother's knowledge or supervision. And years of soldering with leaded solder.

Neither of which toxins one can smell.

I cannot vouch for the state of by brain after all that. I will have to let readers here judge that.

If I happened come across a smelly Pi I would be more than keen to post it to anyone, especially Pi Towers, for confirmation and investigation.

So far nobody has done that so I suspect it's all bunk.
Last edited by Heater on Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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solar3000
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Feb 08, 2018 1:15 am

Mhann, Heater, you must have been THE coolest kid. Sniff'n mercury, sniff'n cyanide, do'n lead.

The latest thing is smok'n pi boards.
Antikythera

jamesh
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:06 am

Dmitry0xFF wrote:
Wed Feb 07, 2018 2:59 pm
jamesh wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:41 am
Heater wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:15 am
Would somebody with a smelly Pi please send it to the Raspberry Pi foundation for evaluation and tracing.

Then we can get to the bottom of this story. Which quite frankly I find hard to believe.

Or, any one with a smelly Pi that is making their head explode is welcome to send them to me. For ...err.. "evaluation".

The practice of USB port sniffing is not to be encouraged :)
We can trace from the information above. If necessary we will ask anyone with a smelly Pi to send it in, but we need to do some assessment of the issue first, since we've never encountered it.
Are there any news about it?
I have just bought a new Raspberry Pi 3B and it also smells extremely toxic. Even after a week online. I feel light toxic smell when I am entering the room (20 square meters) with this RPi, so you can imagine the strength of the smell.
I also have RPi B+ and it doesn't smell at all.
Spray it down with an alcohol based spray to remove any last vestiges of manufacturing. Might even get away with carb cleaner or brake cleaner, but that will be at your own risk. An alcohol based clean should be fine.
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Heater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:27 am

solar3000,
Mhann, Heater, you must have been THE coolest kid. Sniff'n mercury, sniff'n cyanide, do'n lead.
You could never imagine how cool us kids were :)

Note: I am not suggesting any one try sniffing cyanide or messing around with mercury. That's like, a really bad idea. Do get on with some soldering though.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

jahboater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Feb 08, 2018 11:12 am

In this thread there are smelly boards both from the PRC and from the UK which seems odd if its a faulty batch.

And I have spent thousands of hours soldering with leaded solder, and still do - I hate lead-free.

Heater
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Feb 08, 2018 11:43 am

I have both UK and China built Pi. Bought in Europe and the USA. Nothing smelly about any of them.

Yes, I certainly suggest staying away from lead free solder. What a disaster that is.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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mahjongg
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:18 pm

Then again, lead-free solder doesn't smell, and for that matter neither does leaded solder, the only thing that you can smell from the soldering process is burned rosin, which is simply like burned incense (same tree sap based stuff).

Yes, directly after manufacturing, freshly soldered PCB's do have a lingering smell, but they do NOT smell "toxic", just a bit "freshly soldered".

I too, cannot imagine what kind of "toxic smell" any PI can emit.
I think I will believe it when I smell it, but I never have.... (and do not expect I ever will).

The production workers in the manufacturing plant would notice if once in a while a PI comes along with a "toxic smell", as they have to test the darn things, so their head is in close proximity of each and every PI made. They would be the first to complain......

frankdux
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Thu Apr 12, 2018 7:53 pm

I found a solution a long time ago for a Pie 2 B V1.1 2014. You heat the board with hot air. I used a gun without controlled temperature. Anyway I didn't know the max temperature. I tried to stay around 100° coming back and fort (outside of course). Now that I'm willing a PI3 I was wondering if there were some progress...

Come on guys ! A toxic doesn't necessarily kill you as a all. Neither there is only one kind of toxic. BTW lead-free soldering regulation is not for cleaner fume when you solder but for the environment where lead can turn in a digestible form.

As stated by Heater, some batch must smell bad and other doesn't. Mine was very bad as soon as the opening and didn't go away. I remember thinking it is the bag or the last layer processing as i never smell components that bad.

So no progress given it's not happening that often and that the boxes could avoid the smell. So what is the max temperature you can exposed the board and the components to get read of it ?

jamesh
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Re: Unpleasant new board smell ?

Fri Apr 13, 2018 12:59 pm

We've still not encountered a board that smells as much as some people are claiming, so its difficult to know what the problem is, if there is one.

You could heat the board a lot - remember they go through a reflow oven that melts solder so are quite capable of withstanding those sorts of temperatures. I do not recommend it though.
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