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soldering irons


friskybri
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When soldering the metal tabs and triacs to the large copper area on the boards, wait a few seconds after each solder connection for the soldering iron tip to get hot again. Will make your solder joints faster if the tip is hot and will look better also.

The large amount on metal you have to heat up for the solder to flow correctly is large and will cool the tip down significantly.

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Dave,

I agree to a point about as little heat as possible. But in cases like the tabs. Trying to use to small of an iron will take to long to get the heat to build up so that the solder flows properly. In cases like this, a little to much heat for the normial job like soldering in a diode or an IC is the right answer. No, I would not use a soldering gun 100/140 watts. But something along the lines of 60 watts would not be out of line. What you want to do is hit it hard and fast. Build up the heat fast at the joint before it starts to sink away. Also this causes less thermo stress on the circuit board. Only been soldering for 35 yrs so I have learned a few things along the way. I also post some tips else where.

Clean the copper traces and the leads on caps, diodes, and resistors. This helps the solder to flow faster. Yes resin in the solder does clean also, but hey if it is already clean less time is needed to get the solder to adhear to the copper trace and tinned leads.

How can you clean both? Get a large pink eraser like you used to have when in school. And rub the circuit board. For the leads on componets like the resistor and diodes. But the componet on the table top, press the eraser on the lead near the componet, pull the componet out from under. turn over some and repeat. Then do the other end.

May all of your solder joint be shiney with a good fillet.

Max

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Max-Paul is also correct. I was just concentrating on the small components and chips. I too have been in the business for several years, some of which i was performing micro-miniature repair - soldering with magnifying glasses and replacing the copper runs on boards - back in the day that we actually repaired a board instead of landfilling it.

Want some practice? Go to a garage sale or if your town has a recycling center, get an old radio or any electronics and start removing some components. That will get you used to just how much and how long to apply heat.

Or in other words, have a great time at it. It is/was fun!

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Was it you Dave or someone else that said something to the effect of. That anyone can solder, but the real test is can you desolder without destroying the board. In my early years, I lifted many of copper pads. Esp those that were not connected to any trace. And like you, I have repaired boards with either lifted traces or no trace due to a short that blew the trace into so much copper vapor. And then comes the board that needs an IC replaced that has been conformal coated. Now that will seperate the men from the boys for sure. Now I have to say that I have not done micro-miniture (wondering if you might be talking about surface mount quads? But as my eyes are going. I am forced to wear one of those visors with the magnifing lens built in for the finer work. Other times I use a 10X loupe for spot checking my work.

Good to discuss something with others with simular experences.



Max

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Thanks guys. Its was trying last night. step one took me about 2 hours. I had a tough time on the first couple solders. It just didn't want to flow. after a few resisters it started to work much easier. I am getting ready to start step 2 this morning. I couldn't take it anymore with looking at the circuit board last night. hopefully later this morning it will be operational. I HOPE.

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Great, glad to hear that it fired up the first time. Yes this is a skill that as you go along you learn more of the finer things about it. So, each of the board will go faster. Just dont get to confident and put a diode or IC in backwards (flipped end for end).



Keep us posted and glad to hear that you took the plung and tried something new.



Max

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I know what you mean. I put one of the fuse holders on backwards. ops That was tough getting it back off. Got number 2 done. I think I done for the day. Do all that work and hope the light blinks when you plug it in.

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