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Thread: soldering

  1. #1
    David Lyga's Avatar
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    soldering

    Suggestions for very tiny, delicate soldering please: type of solder, prevention of large drops forming, etc. Thanks. - David Lyga

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    Soldering can be tough. The forming of large drops comes from the iron melting the solder from the end of the roll, but it doesn't "stick" to what you're soldering, causing the novice to keep feeding in more solder, and the iron keeps melting it till you have a big blob, but no actual joint. Before you touch the iron or gun to the solder area, make sure the heat tip is full temp before you actually make contact. When you see the existing solder start to melt, feed in your solder from the end of the roll at that time. Keep a paper towel or piece of paper to take the temperature of your solder tip. If it doesn't cause a burn mark on the paper, it's too cold to solder with. And if it's too cold to solder with, the novice keeps holding the tip on the part till he ruins the part. It might not be hot enough to melt the solder, but it's surely hot enough to ruin the part. The less time you have the tip on your solder area is the less likelihood you've fried your component.

  3. #3
    AgX
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    Abundant additional, non-corrosive flux. I often use colophonium paste.

    A eletronically controlled, temperature adjustable solder iron is a treat.

    Most appropriate form of tip. You even might check this in cold state.

    Tinning each part on it's own before soldering would let you care better for each part than soldering both at once.
    And if one surface gives a problem you would not stress the other.

  4. #4
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Very fine tipped soldering iron. Lower melting point better, but I find the differences in solder subtle and usually use whatever I can find.
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    There is a very low temp solder available for model makers, so you could try contacting them It is generally used for soldering white metal die cast model locomotive construction kits. It is real solder but just has a low melting point but is a good electricity conductor. I believe the melting point is around 150F which is a lot lower than conventional lead/tin solder. As well as the solder you need a good acid based (Phosphoric)flux.

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    DWThomas's Avatar
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    For fine electronic work there are smaller diameter solders down around .020 or .032 inch diameter which are a little easier to control. The 1/16 and 1/8 inch stuff is closer to plumbing than modern electronic gear.

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    A lead based solder paste if you can find it. Servisol Soldamop (a copper braid) for soaking up excess solder. Tppex is also useful for masking off areas that you don't want solder on.

    Quote Originally Posted by BMbikerider View Post
    As well as the solder you need a good acid based (Phosphoric)flux.
    An acid flux such as Bakers Fluid is fine for plumbing jobs and tin work, but not on small electronic jobs. A rosin based flux is best, although modern industrial soldering lines have switched to a Citric Acid based flux now that lead has been phased out from most solders.

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    Truzi's Avatar
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    I'm no soldering wizard, but you definitely want a thin-tip on your soldering iron, and a proper electrical solder. I've only used one soldering gun that was any good, most took too long to heat up and this negated the advantage of the gun. I was quite pleased the first time I used an iron - it was so much easier to control.

    Most of my soldering has been on car wiring, and some basic electronics, nothing terribly small or delicate, though I have soldered wires to circuit boards (my only foray into digital, I put USB ports on a few of those "single-use" digital cameras).

    This may sound obvious, but be certain you are using solder meant for electrical connections. Once I had one hell of a time trying to solder some wires without melting everything nearby. My father assured me his solder was the correct stuff. I later learned he had handed me solder for plumbing - the ingredients melted at very high temperatures.
    Truzi

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul_c5x4 View Post
    A lead based solder paste if you can find it. Servisol Soldamop (a copper braid) for soaking up excess solder. Tppex is also useful for masking off areas that you don't want solder on.
    This. Magnification and practice also help. What are you soldering?

  10. #10

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    Radio Shack. They have all you need for fine soldering.

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