Good afternoon all Makers, Tinkers, and Hackers. This is going to be a quick little tip to help you out with thin gauge solder.
I like thin solder as it is easier to work with, but alas I have been given large hands. So I was thinking up a solution to keep solder close to my work piece, with a bit more dexterity then a bear knitting with soggy noodles. I was hoping that there was a more rigid way to hold solder but still allow the fine precision of the thinner gauges and figured all would be lost until one day...
I was writing in my design notebook with a fine 0.5mm Mechanical pencil, thinking about glorious puns. Just then while hoping for the the mother of all dad jokes. I got to thinking and hoping that ideas would flow from my pencil like the leads... solder is made of lead.... If graphite will feed through my pencil then would lead feed... I wonder if they even make .5mm solder.... Huh they do and Amazon sells it, oooh I also need a vise, and some water filters.... I better write down the solder thing, so that I will remember when it arrives... Have I mentioned the ADD? SQUIRREL!!!
The day it arrived day it arrived I jammed it into my pencil, and now my soldering world will never be the same.
Step 1, Acquire stuff
- A roll of 0.5mm solder in the composition of your choosing.
- A .5mm mechanical pencil with a removable eraser.
Step 2, Prep the pencil, Remove the eraser from the back of the pencil and remove the graphite "lead" saving for your other pencils. Click the feed mechanism to ensure that there is no more graphite installed in the pencil
Step 3, Straighten about 5-6 inches of solder and insert it into the rear of the pencil, whilst activating the feed mechanism so that the solder will start feeding from the tip. IE click the pencil till the stuff comes out the end.
Step 4, start soldering and profit!!!
While the back actuating feed pencil worked properly, I like the ease of the side actuating pencil I can just click a couple times and keep soldering on. The only pencil that did not work too well was the rear actuating pencil with a twist up eraser it just was too short to hold properly and I could not get a decent purchase with my big thumbs on the little tube to feed my solder.
Yep it is really that easy, Pull the Eraser, Jam in the same diameter solder and let er click. A cursory check shows that they also make 0.7mm Solder in all formulas as well as 0.9mm solder. so that covers the 3 most common pencil sizes in a side click barrel.
Hope you like the tip and keep on tinkering.
Now I just need a spool holder.... and a mig welder.... and a 3D printer.... SQUIRREL!!!