SMART Group - Surface Mount and Related Technologies


The SMART Group is Europe’s largest technical trade association of its type. We run an e-mail mailing list or forum for the industry as a whole, which is called smart-e-link. The forum is archived HERE

smart-e-link is sponsored by our European Project Partners ChipCheck, Ship Inspector, TESTPeP & uBGA

You can join smart-e-link if you are a SMART Group member or not a member; all welcome!

Frequently Asked Questions about smart-e-link


What is this?

smart-e-link is an e-mail mailing list or forum. smart-e-link has hundreds of members, mostly from the UK and Ireland, but also from Europe, the USA and the Far East.


What is an e-mail mailing list?

A mailing list and a newsgroup are similar in concept, but differ in execution. A newsgroup is “public” in that it may be read by anyone and just about anyone may post to a newsgroup, whether they read it or not. Messages on a mailing list are sent out only to a set group of people, and are distributed solely by e-mail. The only users that may read or post to this mailing list are those who are subscribers.


What’s the idea?

To provide a rapid means of communication to all members of the the SMART Group and the electronics manufacturing industry. To bring news and advice using the technology available today, which many of us manufacture. A forum, if you like.

Traffic varies, according to current interest levels. There is anything from 1 to 10 messages a day, including news items and discussions. You can get a flavour of smart-e-link by having a look HERE


Is this list moderated?

This list is not moderated for content, only membership in a loose way. Mailing lists may be moderated or unmoderated. If a list is unmoderated, in general anyone may join, and any member of the list may post. A list which is moderated has a more controlled atmosphere, and you may not be allowed to join and/or post to the list unless approved by the moderator.


What can be posted?

Any questions, opinions, answers to questions or any information which will benefit the SMART Group membership.
The Group is a technical association so much of the content should be technical, but it will depend on the membership’s activity. Surface mount tips, tricks and good advice are all welcome. “Help” and “want ads” are also welcome, as are sits vac, equipment needed or for sale, etc, although only from end users, not professional service providers.

News about past and future SMART or other relevant industry events is acceptable. We post the SMART Group Diary here as a regular item.



We ask that suppliers and vendors do not use the list as a straightforward advertising medium. Of course, suppliers are encouraged to respond to technical queries with pertinent and beneficial information.

Probably not acceptable: “Buy an Oki-Koki 2000 from us, it’s great!”

Probably acceptable: “This problem may be solved by new generation equipment which has a left threaded vortex and hence more control on the underbite. You need this to deal with zero-application fluxes in overt environments. Most of the new machines have this, including the Oki-Koki 2000 from us.”

When responding to a request for assistance, we recognise that sometimes company or product identification is inevitable. Appropriate responses include technical information, followed by “We may be able to provide such a product/service. Please contact me off-line at ……”

A direct factual answer to a direct question is acceptable:
Question: “What is the latest software issue for an Oki-Koki 2000 and where can I get it?”
Response: “We are on version 87.31b, and it is available as a free download from our website. Regards, Oki-Koki Sales Team.”

Signature files which include name/title/company/phone/fax/e-mail/website are pretty much standard and acceptable, but should not include advertising paragraphs, new product release promotions, etc. If you don’t know how to keep such info out of the signature file, please don’t post to the list.


Second User Equipment

This is a non-commercial forum. However, we recognise that it is a benefit for SMART Group members to be able to find or dispose of manufacturing equipment by using the power and reach of smart-e-link.

It is acceptable to post the following types of messages:

“I need a left threaded vortex for an Oki-Koki 2000 – anyone got a spare one?”

“We have an Oki-Koki 2000 which we no longer need. If anyone wants to see it and make us an offer, please contact us direct (not through smart-e-link).”

“We are in the market for some new kit, and are considering an Oki-Koki 2000. If anyone could discuss the pros and cons of this machine, please contact me off-line.”

Please note that it is not acceptable for equipment vendors (whether manufacturers, distributors, second user dealers or professional service providers) to make any posts to smart-e-link on this topic at any time.

If in doubt, please feel free to run your proposed message by us first by e-mailing This happens frequently, and we always welcome the courtesy of those asking.

Remember that offending your customers and peers doesn’t gain you business; it’s likely to have the opposite effect.


How do I post a message?

Send your e-mail to:

All members of the list will automatically get the message. However, your message will not be accepted unless you are a subscriber to smart-e-link.

Please sign your e-mail submissions with name, company and e-mail address. Your telephone number may also help further communications.

Fill in the “Subject” field explicitly, so recipients can scan new e-mail quickly, and filter out items of no interest.

Please do not send joining or leaving instructions to this address, as these will then be distributed to everyone on the list.


How do I reply to a message?

In preference, send replies to the smart-e-link list, so that all members can read the answers and gain accordingly. This should happen if you just push the “reply” button on your e-mail software. Information flow and distribution is what this is all about. Diverse opinions valued. Disagreements welcome, although see para 10a.

Only send replies direct to an individual if strictly private.


Some requests

a) Please adhere to standard net-etiquette.
b) Please only send messages in plain text/ASCII. Do not send encoded files or attached documents (they will be stripped out automatically). smart-e-link has a very wide circulation, and there is a risk that a computer virus could be spread amongst all its membership (even in an embedded Word document), albeit not by deliberate intent. If necessary, an executable file, picture, graphic or word processor file must be sent directly first for checking, before being posted on a website for viewing or downloading.



Comments and additions the FAQ most welcome. Please post to the list for discussion



Please forward this FAQ to any other SMART Group members who might like to join the list, including your colleagues at work.


How do I join the list?

Click on this link or send an e-mail to and, in the text of your message (not the subject line), write: SUBSCRIBE SMART-E-LINK yourfirstname yourlastname


Who is on the smart-e-link list?

Anyone who asks from the industry at large! In due course, we may have to restrict it to those who are members of the SMART Group. The e-mail addresses of the list membership are confidential.


The more you put in to smart-e-link, the more you get out. Please use and contribute. Your input is valued.

Nigel Burtt – Mailing List Organiser