What is "snap-in" in the product catalog?

"Snap-in" is a structural design for holding a switch in place with terminals, or a frame, that are kinked so the switch does not fall out after insertion into the PC board holes.

What are the different soldering methods?

・Hand (manual) soldering
Soldering is performed manually using a soldering iron.

・Dip soldering
Soldering is performed by passing the workpiece through flowing molten solder.

・Reflow soldering
This is a soldering method for surface mounting of components that uses solder paste or cream instead of molten solder and involves heating the entire PC board and its components.

What is an encoder?

An encoder is a device that converts an amount of rotation or travel of a control shaft into digital output as electrical signals. Output is categorized into absolute and incremental types. Signals are detected by means of mechanical contact, using electrical contacts, or by optical or magnetic non-contact means. Alps Alpine mainly supplies contact-type encoders making use of sliding contacts and pattern switches.

What is the difference between absolute and incremental encoders?

・Absolute encoders
Codes are allocated to each angle of shaft rotation or shaft travel position. Output is a code signal corresponding to the absolute position.
Rotary encoders mainly use the Gray code system to express the current position of the control shaft.

・Incremental encoders
Output, generated by rotation or movement of the control shaft, is multiple pulses with different output timing (phase difference). Pulse output is generated corresponding to the change in shaft position, and direction of rotation is identified from the output timing of the different signals.

What is the difference between rotational torque and detent torque?

・Rotational torque is the torque required to rotate the control shaft.

・Detent torque is the torque required to rotate the control shaft of an encoder or potentiometer that has detents. Detents are a device for creating a restraining feel during operation of the encoder or potentiometer.

What kind of product is a self-return switch?

A rotating switch that closes (switches on) when the shaft is rotated in either direction and opens (switches off) when the shaft is released and returns to center position.

What is the maximum resolution of an encoder?

The number of positions, for an absolute encoder, and the number of pulses per revolution, for an incremental encoder.

What is shaft push-pull strength?

The maximum force a control shaft can withstand when a load is applied to the shaft along its axis.

What are insulation resistance and withstand voltage (voltage proof)?

・Insulation resistance is a measure of insulation performance between terminals (live parts) and the part body or the control shaft, expressed as a resistance value.

・Withstand voltage (voltage proof) is the maximum voltage a part can withstand for a certain length of time without the insulation breaking down when voltage is applied between terminals (live parts) and the part body or the control shaft.

Explain the different shaft (control part) designs.

・Flat shaft
The most common shaft design used with a press-fit knob

・Serrated shaft
A shaft with regularly spaced ridges formed around the shaft exterior, used with a press-fit knob

・Slotted shaft
A shaft used with either a press-fit knob or knob screw-fastened from the side

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