Soldering help?

I have trouble getting the solder to actually stick to the things I'm soldering. I use flux, but all the solder sticks to the tip. I have to keep making a bigger bubble until it falls off onto the wires. Am I doing something wrong?

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iceng6 years ago

Use a clean tip with enough heat for the mass of metals you want to join. You got to touch the tip, the wire, the pad and good 5 core English thin solder to each-other at the same instant of time ( maybe adding the solder to the pad 90 ms after the iron ). A mature assembly woman should teach this to you. Kind words will be her reward and some token she can lord over her companions.

framistan6 years ago
Some metals you can not solder to... such as aluminum and stainless steel and galvanized metal... (and others). some metals have coatings on them that are shiny like chrome. You cant solder to that either. Sometimes you can scratch the surface of a metal using sandpaper or a knife and it removes the chrome coating or the thin layer of clear varnish or whatever... now you can solder to it. Sometimes a beginner will try using a 10 watt iron to solder a LARGE piece of metal to a wire or something. If the item being soldered is large enough to absorb all your heat then you need a HIGHER WATTAGE iron. If it is REALLY large, you might need to use a propane torch to get the metal hot enough.

In your question, you do not describe very clearly what kind of items you are soldering. What kinds of metals... what kind of solder you are using... what size items... or what wattage iron you are using.
seandogue6 years ago
Heat the object being soldered, not the solder.

power up the soldering iron, let it comes to temperature, wipe it on a moist sponge to clean it, tin the tip with a tiny amount of solder, and place the tip of the iron against the wires/copper you'll be soldering.

Then, apply a tiny amount of solder to the junction between the tip of the iron and the items being soldered. this will help the heat transfer into the item.

Apply a tiny bit more. If it flows, apply more to complete the operation. If it doesn't, clean the solder iron tip and try again.
orksecurity6 years ago
You're probably not letting things heat enough for the solder to flow well. There's a middle point between not heating long enough and heating too long that only experience will teach you to find.

As Caarntedd says, it helps if the iron starts just slightly "moist" with solder, to help conduct heat to the connection. Warn the connection, then apply a small amount of solder to the heated contacts rather than to the iron (or possibly to all three). If it doesn't flow to coat both contacts, heat until it does.

Note: If your solder joints have a granular surface (rather than a smooth surface), that's another hint that you aren't heating them enough.
caarntedd6 years ago
Put a small blob of solder onto the tip of the iron to help conduct heat to the wires, hold the blob (on the tip) against the wires to heat them up, hold the solder against the wires also, (not against the iron). When the wires reach the correct temp to melt the solder, it will flow nicely through the joint. Beware of overheating the joint or the insulation will melt off your wires. When soldering small stuff a clip on heat sink is helpful.