Soldering?

I got a new PC board from radio shack and I am going to be making a little flashlight.  I don't think the board is interconnected in any way, so is it ok for me just to use melted solder as a lead from one spot to another, like connecting the pos and neg of two led's.  If this isn't right, what is the proper way to use those PC boards.

Question by jj.inc   |  last reply


Soldering question? Answered

Is soldering pronounced [ SAW - TERING ] ? I was told this, but it didn't make sense to me that it isn't pronounced how it is spelled.

Question by VinceJDJ   |  last reply


Soldering iron

Sooo i bought a soldering iron because i though i could be cool..so i bought one and now i dont know how to use it...anyone wanna help me with my problem?

Topic by kaseyraex3   |  last reply


Soldering Survey

Hi there. We’re Solder Otter, a team of recent engineering graduates from the University of Waterloo in Canada that is redesigning the soldering iron so soldering electronics can be safer and simpler. You may have seen the survey we posted back in 2013 when we first started working on Solder Otter. Since then, we’ve built prototypes, won pitch competitions, and learned so much about makers and soldering. We’ve received a lot of positive feedback, so we’re pushing forward with the project beyond graduation. We have another survey. It’s similar to our last survey, but this one is designed to help us refine our prototype into the best soldering iron for you. We’re reaching out to makers and hobbyists across several forums because we want to learn about your soldering experiences, preferences, and needs. We're also considering designing with children in mind, so if you have any input in that regard, we'd love to hear that too. If you can spare 10 minutes to fill out our survey (link below), we would really appreciate your input. Thank you! If you have any questions or comments feel free to reply to this post or send us an email at info@solderotter.com. Link to survey: http://goo.gl/forms/Uep9Qd0GiM

Topic by solderotter   |  last reply


Soldering Irons?

My last soldering iron needs to be retired, it will no longer melt solder, and was originally purchased sometime in the 80's. So I need a new soldering iron, but I do not know which one to buy. Should I get a 25 watt or 30 watt to make sure I have enough heat? Also are any of the soldering stations with the variable heat gun worth it? For now I will have to be careful and use my butane soldering iron (I have not burned any components yet).

Topic by kcedgerton   |  last reply


Soldering kits...

Where can I find a good quality one for on the cheap? Or at-least semi-cheap? Preferably under $50. My computer wont put a space there. Thanks for all incoming answers. Unless your answer doesnt help. NO THANKS FOR YOU!

Topic by airhead12   |  last reply


Speedy soldering

Hi, guys. I've been looking for videos and advice on how to solder quickly, but I keep hitting a wall with my search engine giving me quick instructions instead of quick technique. Does anybody have any advice or links I could use? (I work putting together solar cells and since I just had a significant pay-cut, I need to produce more plates in the same amount of time)

Topic by TashaDax   |  last reply


Soldering Help? Answered

So i recently got a 40 watt weller soldering iron. This is my first soldering iron ever, and i have watched many instructional videos and tips on how to use it. I had a bit of trouble tinning the tip but i got the hang of it. I am using Rosin Core Solder btw. Today i went to go practice my soldering a bit, so i plugged in my soldering iron and waited for it to heat up. Once i heated it up i got a damp sponge and i wiped off the old solder. IIRC i wiped it off and then tryed to tin the tip again, but i saw my tip has turned black. I tried to tin it, but the solder just turned into a ball and rolled off the tip, as if the tip was oil and the solder was water. I tried taking off what i presumed was oxidation by cleaning it with the sponge, mr. cleans magic eraser, and my last resort was a nail filer. MR cleans magic eraser turned the oxidation a grayish blue, but the nail filer was the only thing that took off all the oxidation. (i know that any sort of abrasive thing shouldn't be used, but i was angry and confused). I felt pretty happy, but as soon as i put solder on the tip, the tip immediately turned black and the solder rolled off again, making tinning impossible. I tried re tinning my spare chisel tip too and it wasnt so bad, but the solder just rolled off too. Now all i have left is a tinned "mini chisel" tip that im scared to use because i dont want to mess up what i have left. Is there something im doing wrong? I could really use some help.

Question by jaguilar16   |  last reply


Soldering Station

I am looking for a well-built, durable soldering station that has adjustable output modes. I was wondering if anyone could tell me about any soldering stations that they own or used that was a great product. Also, i would like it to be under $70 is possible, but all suggestions are welcome.

Topic by H20 


solder mask

Is a solder mask just pcb laquer? like you could make your own solder masks?

Topic by guyfrom7up   |  last reply


Soldering substitute? Answered

Is there anything that i can use instead of solder to bind electronics with? Im asking about solder itself, not the iron.

Question by PieMaster777   |  last reply


Soldering irons ?

Would any one know what type and where to get a soldering iron to solder tabs on to solar cells

Question by fletcher eyes   |  last reply


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?

Question by 7654321   |  last reply


Solder with plastic?

I have been soldering veeeery small devices lately and I wanted to ask the community if there are any other cheap options such as a voltage-conductive polymer (with good conductivity), I know that it may not be possible for it to have the same characteristics but soldering with glue would be so much easier, I may sound silly but it may exist already... I found this: "silver conductive epoxy" my question still lingers: Is there a true solder replacement?

Topic by dejabox   |  last reply


Solder with plastic?

I have been soldering veeeery small devices lately and I wanted to ask the community if there are any other cheap options such as a voltage-conductive polymer (with good conductivity), I know that it may not be possible for it to have the same characteristics but soldering with glue would be so much easier, I may sound silly but it may exist already... I found this: "silver conductive epoxy" my question still lingers: Is there a true solder replacement?

Topic by dejabox 


Soldering indoors? Answered

I'm a grade-A electronics noob, and I'm just starting my first project soon. I'd be doing it now if not for the fact that I'm doing it in an upstairs bedroom and if I know anything about soldering it's that you're supposed to do it in a well-ventilated area. Should I get a fume extractor, or is that more of a luxury? Is there a cheaper alternative? Would it be a problem that there's another house a couple of feet from the window I'll be soldering in front of? 

Question by Numbuh1Nerd   |  last reply


Solder Paste

I have a couple of questions pertaining to solder paste... Can you buy it in really small amounts, like 10g? Can you apply it by hand, or do you need a stencil? I wanted to do a project involving an ARM chip, but the only way I could solder it to the board is using the paste, but considering I'd spend $40 on paste and $20 on a stencil, its not worth it.

Topic by zachninme   |  last reply


soldering steel?

I am a sculptor and, if possible, would like to make simple bases for my work...ie a 3" x 3" steel plate with a verticle a 1/8" - 1/4" steel rod attached.  Is it possible to do this with soldering?   If not , would copper possibly work?  Thanks for any advice!

Question by Marcia RR   |  last reply


Solder sucker?

Hello all.  I had a question about desoldering.  First thing is that I have desoldering wick.  I found out I was using it wrong.  I melted the solder and then placed the end of the wick in the melted solder.  But I watched a youtube video and according to that I should place the wick on the solder and then heat up the wick and solder as one.  But this still has not been working very well for me.  The wick is over a year old and I was wondering if this could be a problem.  But my other question is how well do those spring loaded solder suckers work?  I was thinking about perhaps ordering one off of e-bay.  Yes I know I might find one in a good hardware store but I have some paypal money I could use.  In case you do not know what I am talking about....it is the spring loaded suckers where you cock it, put it next to the melted solder and then press a button and it forms a vacuum and sucks up the solder into it.  I think I can pick one up for a few bucks off-line, so if you people say they work well then I will give it a shot. Also in case you want to know what I am working on.  This would be used for salvaging parts of of circuit boards.  Like right now I am trying to salvage a few capacitors and also a couple of flyback transformers from crt computer monitors.  Also tomorrow I am tearing apart a broken water cooler to see if there is anything I can take out of there. I have also being having a problem getting solder to melt in the first place.  But that probably just has something to do with the 2 soldering irons I am using and I am trying my best to figure it all out.  I know my way around computers as far as building and repairing them.  But soldering and desoldering is something I really want to learn to be able to further my computer repair skills.  Sometimes it would save so much money being able to solder and desolder myself.  Especially those darn ac ports that are soldered right onto the boards sometimes. I have not actually made anything from this site yet.  But this is a wonderful site and after cruzing the forums here I am pretty sure I will get some good replies.  Ok I will stop babbling and I look forward to your replies.  

Topic by jcaresheets   |  last reply


Laser soldering

So im making a  laser spirograph (https://www.instructables.com/id/Laser-Spirograph/#step1) and i just got my laser diode to come out of its case, and i was wondering where i should solder the red and black wire as it does not look like the one in the 'ible. the laser diode looks like this one here http://10mW 532nm Green Laser Module (3V 11.9mm)  (i would take a pic of the diode but i cant find my camera!) the only difference in the diodes is that mine has a black button instead of the red. Oh and one more thing is that it has to bypass the use of the button. Thanks in advance!!!!!!!!

Topic by Mr. walrus 


Of solder and circuits

To dodge an onslaught of summer boredom, I'd like to fart around with small scale electronics projects (LEDs, maybe a circuit board, etc.). I hope that by the time I finish farting around, I would have something nifty to post on this website. Unfortunately, I have little practical knowledge of this stuff (other than what I learned five years ago in high school electronics). I mean, I don't even know how one technically refers to "this stuff." Can anyone recommend some good books or a general method of wetting one's feet before jumping into the pond? Highly technical sources are obviously beyond me at this point, so I'm looking for introductory-level information that can be flexibly applied to whatever bizarre project pops into my mind on Friday afternoon.

Topic by ringtail.jack   |  last reply


Solder Pen instead of standard solder iron .? Answered

I had an idea about making a pen that writes solder not ink i searched for it and i found that it has been made this year but i'm thinking about making my own version maybe of wood link for the solder pen : http://www.yankodesign.com/2011/07/01/faux-pen/ if you have an idea please share it here

Question by aessam1   |  last reply


soldering alternatives - conductive glue, soldering paste ...?

------------------------------------------------------------ SOLDERING ALTERNATIVES - CONDUCTIVE GLUE/SOLDERING PASTE ... ? i am looking for a reliable, not-too-expensive alternative for soldering connections & found conductive glue/paste products as listed in the following; .... i assume that there is nothing that really replaces soldering but would like to know, if you probably tested any of these or may recommend a specific product suitable for "sticking" components onto pcb's ... any hint is highly appreciated! ------------------------------------------------------------ PRODUCTS http://de.rs-online.com/web/c/?searchTerm=loet+paste&sra;=oss solder paste/solder glue ... based on silver http://www.ponoko.com/make-and-sell/show-hardware/2201-a-solder-paste-50g-leaded?source_node=ponoko_united_states#main-image solder paste ... needs heat to harden out, cheaper than silver based glue http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/tools/b70c/ "Wire Glue" ... does not need heat to harden out, based on graphite powder, cheapest of all i found so far https://www.instructables.com/id/Make-Conductive-Glue-and-Glue-a-Circuit/ ... selfmade, based on graphite powder ------------------------------------------------------------ TESTS/RATINGS/COMMENTS http://forums.reprap.org/read.php?70,21723 "Wire Glue" ... it's consistence might be too brittle, using additional expoxy might make up with this issue

Question by marc_is_curious   |  last reply


Soldering headphone jack, any special solder?

Hi. I purchased some decent headphones a little while ago and my little brother was playing with the cats with the jack. One of them stuck their claw through it and it needs replacing. They were pretty expensive headphones, so I want to repair these. Will any old solder do? I like my sound quality. I've only got Lead-free crap ATM. Cheers, Josho.

Topic by Josho   |  last reply


soldering iron problem

I have a soldering iron which  is  expensive and used to work well but after some time instead of melting the solder it made balls of iron which were still connected to the solder and never stayed on the soldering iron. please help

Question by amazinghannure   |  last reply


need help soldering

I'm having some trouble soldering and am hoping you guys can give me some pointers.  When I try to get a little bit of solder on the tip of my iron, the bead that forms will sometimes either not stick to the iron at all or will roll up the tip a bit so it's on the side rather than right on the point.  How can I get the solder to go on the very tip?  I am soldering 0603 surface mount LEDs, so precision is key. Also, I've been placing my wire against the fluxed pad and dragging a bit of solder across it, but something I read said you should apply a tiny bit of solder to the pads and the ends of the wires separately then hold them together and just apply heat with the iron to fuse them.  Which method do you think is better/stronger?   Thanks.

Topic by aliasjanedoe   |  last reply


Soldering help required

Hi everyone. I just signed up for Instructables, but I have been a constant visitor for a while now. I'm also the happy owner of a cheap soldering iron I bought a while ago for some projects I had on mind, so I've been checking out all those Instructables about soldering to have a clue of how to solder without dying on the attempt. The problem is, most of them are for soldering circuits and I'm more interested in other kind of stuff like audio wires, speakers, LEDs, switches, and the most audio plug jacks. So, I bought my soldering iron (a pretty cheap one) and started to use it but, hell, I just cannot figure out how to do it right. The first time I used it I tried to tin it correctly but I think I might have let a spot I couldn't tin quickly and apparently that spot never heated correctly. After several days of use the tip of the darn thing changed a few times of color to finally corroded and the mentioned spot of the tip fell apart although I cleaned it and tinned it after every use. My second bigger problem is that after tinning the tip the solder appear to have life of its own. Usually I put the tip upon the place where I want to solder and next to the wires, apply the solder, and then the solder: a) Melt, shrinks and go back the way it came.... or b) A portion stays in place but manage to stay down, left or right from the wires to be soldered. When trying to tin wires the solder always rejects them (I think running away from them). So please, help. Could anyone tell me what am I doing wrong. Is it the solder? Do I need to stop being cheap and buy a better soldering iron?? Is it me doing all wrong?? Can anyone post a "Soldering for less than dummies" Instructable??? Any help will be highly appreciated.

Topic by fiola   |  last reply


solder wire together? Answered

 i have blow three my soldering iron , and it is because wire positive and negetive collide, when i buy soldering iron wire positive and negetive is not connect to heating element strongly,and can broke anytime when im using my soldering iron.so to prevent this collision , can i solder  wire positive and negetive(seperately ) to heating element,and can my soldering iron still function after i solder the wire. and i dont want my soldering iron to blow again , plesea help me.

Question by hore   |  last reply


soldering iron help ?

Well today i finally got my soldering iron Weller marksman 25 watts for $ 17.75 but i turned it on it smoldered for 3 minutes then stopped then the tip started to get black and solder wont stick to it is that oxidization and how and what do i use to clean it off

Question by albylovesscience   |  last reply


Soldering Wires to a Battery

So...If I were to solder a wire to a battery...Is that legal? I mean, will it like explode, or melt, or go haywire or whatever? Or will there be no problems at all, whatsoever? Thanks!

Topic by Joe426   |  last reply


Problem in the soldering iron?

Well theres been a minor hicuup in my soldering iron if any cd help the soldering iron doesnt heat up proprly the led which acts as indicator somtyms brights up sometym is dimmd or doesnt lyt is there a problem with the soldring iron or mains line

Question by chatsbk007   |  last reply


Beginners Soldering Iron

I am new to soldering and am looking to buy an iron. Any suggestions on beginner irons would be great. I plan on mostly using it for soldering small electronics. Also I would like to buy at a store and not over the internet. Again, any advice is greatly appreciated.

Topic by sardines454   |  last reply


Soldering Aluminum to aluminum

I'm building an aluminum bridge for my railroad.  I need to solder the side braces rather than using screws and nuts.  I've ordered a 150 watt chisel soldering iron and need to know what items (solder etc) I need to perform this project.  Any assistance greatly appreciated.  I would rather not use a torch on this project unless absolutely necessary.

Topic by trainman707   |  last reply


soldering iron advice.

It has become apparent in my that a soldering iron is my next necessary resource/skill. Wondering what I am looking for in a good one, or any tips on what other people use. The use will be arduino circuit building. thanks  

Topic by stupidityisanart   |  last reply


Looking for a soldering iron

Im liiking to buy a soldering iron. I really dont know all that much about them, so i was hoping i could get some advice on what i should purchase for general use soldering. Do i need a variable heat iron? Wattage? Heat? im hoping something from radio shack (under $20) will get me by.

Topic by ScubaSteve   |  last reply


Soldering Iron advice?

Hello, I'm shopping for a new soldering iron and I was hoping for some advice or recommendations. I'm a professional auto tech, and do plenty of soldering there, but I'm getting back into electronics stuff for a hobby. My butane iron is fine for work, but I need a better iron for boards and the like.  Do you think its too early to get a temp control iron? Would a nice stand alone iron suffice for now? I'm not afraid to spend some money on a nice station but $100 is around the max I could budget now. My tool guy at work deals with Weller, so that would be convenient for a tad pricier set up. I'm greatful for any advice or help, and hope to have a project on here soon. Thank you

Topic by Mrlzeppelin   |  last reply


Butane Soldering Iron

Hello! Recently my soldering iron broke, and i want to buy a new one! I was thinking of getting a butane with interchangeable tips. Can you suggest an online one thats >$10 and with free shipping? Thanxs!

Topic by Sandisk1duo   |  last reply


Beginner soldering projects?

I'm new to soldering, and I was wondering if you guys knew of some projects to help me get some experience in soldering. I know that there's a guide on here, but I didn't know what projects to get started on. Your help is appreciated.

Topic by UltraPurple   |  last reply


Extra tiny soldering

Ok, I have a weller 40w iron and I want to do some seriously tiny work, I cannot afford to buy anything. how would I go about making a tip for the iron?

Topic by The Ideanator 


Redesigning the soldering iron!

Hi, we’re a team of engineering undergrads hoping to redesign the soldering iron. Specifically, we’re looking at making it safer and more usable by younger teens and children. We’re looking for any feedback or advice you might have, especially if you have kids, so if you can spare a few minutes to fill out our survey, that’d be awesome. Or if you have any questions, feel free to shoot us an email at: solder.otter@gmail.com. Thank you for your time and input! https://docs.google.com/forms/d/14cAsPIbiU_jf09aFBU03nplbYuBtr0JpTPzrWEp4OFw/viewform also, does anyone know why there is so much metal exposed towards the tip?

Topic by solderotter   |  last reply


Soldering iron smoking? Answered

Hi Guys, I just bought a new soldering iron for the first time. When i plugged it into the wall outlet it started smoking (not alot) well that scared the living crap out of me, so I turned it off. So can any of you guys tell me that should I just dump the iron or is it normal. Please guys help (and there was a bit of smoke near the handle too). Oh and another interesting thing is that after 10 seconds of plugging it in it started melting solder ( its a 35 or 30 watt iron ) Thanks in advance. -Prickly Potato

Question by The Prickly Potato   |  last reply


NYC Soldering Championships

Apparently, for all of you in the NYC area, July 29th (next-next tuesday) is the NYC Soldering Championships."With solder irons blazing, and the power of molten metal at their finger tips, New York City's electricity enthusiasts and hardware hackers will connect components to complete circuits for the glory of being the fastest soldering gun in NYC."The end goal is to solder an entire electronics kit (which has not yet been chosen) as fast as possible. Unfortunately, you must be 21 or older to enter.....After the competition, the Ignite NYC talks will begin, several of which seem quite... interesting...For registration and more information, check out NYC Resistor's site.

Topic by T3h_Muffinator   |  last reply


breakin in a soldering iron

Is it just me or do you have to "break in" a soldering iron before it's really usful? I've had a new soldering iron for about amonth (using it about 4 hours to 8 hours a week) and it only started to solder really well in the past couple of days. Anybody know why? Also my soldering iron kind of has a hot spot, where you the solder melts really well, that normal?

Topic by guyfrom7up   |  last reply


Ultrasonic soldering bath

Making a working ultrasonic soldering iron is not as easy as I though it would be.Finding tanrsducer of suitable design and size is even harder.So I thought I start with something easier and share the thoughts here.If you need to solder impossible to solder things then quite often you could get away by wetting the entire area.For example the end of a wire or a lug where it won't matter that you can solder on the bottom as well as the top.Back in my days flux core solder was a rare and very expensive thing to find.So we had a little soldering pot and flux pot instead for working with lots of wires.Dip, dip, done....The pre-soldered wires where then easy to work with and the ramaining flux on then was enough.Doing this for metals like aluminium, stainless steel or even ceramics seems impossible at first sight.China offers cheap ultrasonic transducers including the required driver electronics for very littel money these days, despite the trade wars.The most obvious solution would then be to get a cheap and big enough soldering bath and to attach the transducer to it....Won't work though and if it does then not for long.Problem is firstly the heat transfered to the ceramic parts of the trandsucer and secondly the fact that most of these soldering baths use quite thick steel for the container.Add the that you deal with quite some grams of molten metal and you know where I am going.Building your own ultrasonic soldering bath to solder the impossible with ease!Project costs:40kHz transducer with driver board : about 50 bucks.Thin walled stainless steel bowl ( about 50 to 100ml but go bigger if you like) : about 2 bucks.Leftovers for an enclosure can be wood, plasic or your favourite 3D printer.Ultrasonic horn: About 500 bucks from your favourite engennering company or you need to make it yourself - I prefer the later.Main design considerations for the horn:We need something to keep the heat away from the transducer that also amplifies the power coming from it.That is why we can use a bowl or container that has a small bottom daimeter as the transducer if need be ;)There is a good reason a commercial horn costs a lot of money.They are preferably made from titanium and they need to perform as advertised right from the start.We substitude by using some aluminium round stock and a lathe.It is advisable to leave the transducer as it is!Do not take it apart to mount your horn directly onto the ceramics!Use a long enough set screw or include the required thread on your horn to mount it onto the transducer.If you prefer to use stainless steel doe to the lower heat conductivity then be my guest.The horn should have the same diameter as the mating part of the transducer for a quarter of the wavelength of the transducers frequency in the given material.Please look up how fast sound travels in your choosen material and calculate it properly.Having the lenght of the thick part right is quite cruicial.The thinner part that amplifies our movements should be about a quarter of the diameter of the transducer.For example: if the mating face of the tansducer is 40mm in diameter then the thin part of the horn should be 10mm.The length again is a quarter of the wavelength or the same as the thick part.Where thick meets thin please allow for a 3 to 5mm radius and make sure this area is nice and smothly finnished.Now, length is quite critical here....As we will mount our finnsihed actuator free hanging under the bath we need a feasable way to comapensate for our tolerances by creating our horn without a simulating software. I found that welding a short stub onto the container works best but with aluminum it is harder.I assume most will opt for welding a 6mm soft steel threaded rod onto the container.Either way the container surface must be kept flat for the mating surface of our actuator rod.So it is best to make the stud yourself or to use a suitable replacement - like using some flux and your stick welder for create a makeshift spot welder ;)If you decided on using steel for the horn then of course you can just mill a 10mm piece with a suitable thread and flat mating surface...What you want to end up with is a screw connection that has a flat mating surface and no empty spaces, fine thread prefered.Tuning the horn....The ensclosure is easy to make as a box, so the only thing to worry about is insulation but nothing to affect performance.So I just assume you have it all ready ;)With the horn at one quarter wavelength either end our thin end will be too long unless a short stud is used for a direct fit.So whatever you had to add for the part on your container or bowl need to be removed from he horns thin end.Try to keep the gad for the threaded part as small as possible as it affects the resonace.As things never turn out perfect the first try I prepare some thin steel washers - 100mm outer diameter in case you wonder and stick with the above example.I use a strong neodymium magnet and belt sander to create washers from very thin to slightly thinner ;)Taking off slightly more from the horns end will then allow toadd these washers if required - but please do a try as it is first when you think you got the measurements all right!For an aluminium horn you will of course use aluminium washers here.To do so fill the container with some water and place a sheet of thin alumiium foil on top of the water.Turn it on and within a few seconds you should see holes appearing in the fiol or even small fractures.If nothing but noise happens it is quite certain your rod will be a bit too long.Unscrew and take about one tenth of a mm off the thin end of the horns mating surface to shorten it.Try again with the foil and if no better remove some more material.Once you see some action try adding a layer of aluminium foil between the mating surfaces - screw it tight!The foil won't last long but if the action on the water is far better until it fails you know you took off too much.The washers come into place if the tuning won't work at all.Sometimes you can cut off a little bit again and again but the piece will remain too short ;)Especially if you have an aluminium horn and needed to use a steel screw on the bowl...So once the shortening of the horn fials you add a washer to get slightly above the original length and start replacing the differently thick washer until you find a sweet spot.The tricky part is over, now to solve the heating poblem...Using some glass seal as used on wood fire ovens not olnyl provides good insulation to our enclosure but also prevents the vibrations from spreading too far.As our hardware store won't just give use the little bit we need the rest can be used to insulate our container.Dending on the size and shape of your container I hope you decided to buy a container tha fits your heating element...I found that replacement coils for lab heaters work fine but some small fan heaters also use round heating elements instead if wire spirals.For a custom shape it is quite easy to use a coil of heatin wire rated for your mains voltage and a glass fibre sleeve for insulation.To keep it all in shape just wrap some steel wire over it - over the insulated coils of course.The temperature control can be as fancy as with a microcontroller or as simple as using a dimmer like I did.Most heating elements will go glowing red hot if the mains voltage is not reduced.It makes sense to limit the dimmer's movements accordingly by testing it.Just do it in the dark afeter exposing a small bit of the heating wire from the insulating sleeve.Once you see a faint glow coming dial it back a bit until you can see any glow - that should be the max setting.For a big bath or to save time you can of course crank it up to what the glass insulation can tolerate but be aware that solder can boil over!I do a temperature check either with a touch free IR thermometer of by checking how quickly some rosin boils off.If you need to dip bigger parts you need a higher temperature, so I think a digital or sensor temp control is not really required.Once you found a sweet spot to hold the solder temp long enough without getting too hot or cold just mark it for reference ;)Using the ultrasonic soldering bath correctly.Cavitation is what the work for us, so we only need to activate the ultrasonic part when we need it with a push button or food pedal switch.We do not use any flux or resin!That means if you used the bath for normal soldering and or resin then clean the remains off the surface first.A shiny and clean surface is best but the oxidisation will happen quickly so don't be too disappointed ;)Start by dipping in a clean copper wire.Some solder might stick but it won't look proper.Now dip it in again and while it is in push the button for about 3 seconds.Like magic, if tuned properly your wire is soldered and properly covered to where it was dripped in.Try the same with some slightly sanded or at least clean aluminium wire, but use the button right away for about 5 seconds.The wire should be coated with solder once more.You can try a glass rod or some stainless wire next but I guess the working principle is clear now ;)Not everything will bond with solder, especially not if it is not clean.A piece of glass with your fingerprint on it might just fail and some ceramics will only let the solder stick without actually bonding.You should always check the mechanical strength of your soldered connection before having to rely on it ;)And why would you need such a machine?Well, most people won't have any use for it.Those who do might not be able to afford a commercial model.And there is always those who just want it all...If you know why you need such a thing than you have an alternative now at a fraction of the cost.You only need a lathe or someone who can machine the horn for you.Another benefit is that for smaller containers it is possible to weld a small "bridge" over the top.Should be placed so the bottom is in the solder while top is above it.In many cases you will then be able to use this plate to heat up whatever you need to solder on.Like a glass plate where you would like to solder a wire to.Once up to temp turn the ultrasonic part on and use a normal soldering iron and flux flree solder.Works quite well for these small solar panel kits...Ok, and how far away is our cheap ultrasonic soldering iron?Not that far :)I already have a topic for this though....

Topic by Downunder35m   |  last reply


Soldering copper to copper?

I'm just starting out but most of the instruction I've seen on soldering (jewelry) talks about flux, the solder itself, and a torch or soldering iron. When soldering copper to copper is there a special flux and solder to be used so that the solder doesn't look "silver"? Does it matter whether you use a torch or a soldering iron?

Question by    |  last reply


Learn to solder month!

It's learn to solder month! Earn yourself an Instructables patch by sharing your soldering knowledge. Full details here: How to get an Instructables patch by contributing to "Learn to Solder Month".Also, be sure to check out our How to solder Instructable and all the rest of the soldering Instructables in the How to solder group.

Topic by ewilhelm   |  last reply


Diy soldering flux

Quick question regarding diy soldering flux can i use gum rosin to make the flux

Question by nikko_47   |  last reply


Is soldering a health risk?

I was just wondering how (aside from being clumsy and burning yourself) soldering can be a health risk. I would suppose the fumes would be bad for you, and is there anything else? And is it safe to solder in an average room in a house, or should I do it outside for better ventilation? 

Question by diggingeagle   |  last reply


Beginner in Soldering, HELP!

I want to get into soldering and circuit boards, but i dont know what to do first. I HAVE soldered before, but it was only a couple little things in woodshop (we were making a clock) and i didnt understand what i was doing, i was just following instructions. So any input would be greatly appreciated! Can you guys recommend a decent soldering station around the $50-70 range. What about tutorials, i want tutorials on ANYTHING that has to do with soldering, but nothing to overwhelming, remember im just a beginner. some tutorials i would appreciate are: -soldering (of course) -reading schematics -the theorys (ohms law, and all that good stuff) -practice projects (projects that show you how things work) -and basically anything that you think is helpful besides soldering station, what other tools are necessary? and do you have any recommendations for those tools.

Topic by um0123   |  last reply


Soldering copper question.

I'm working on a project that requires soldering a 1/4" OD copper tube into a hole drilled in the side of a 2" copper pipe. Will a soldered join (not brazed) be sturdy or do I need to do something to reinforce (cut threads into the tube and pipe, flare the tube and insert from inside, etc) it? There won't be a lot of stress on the join but there will be a small tap on the tube to there may be a bit of torsion now and again. Thanks for your responses!

Topic by Mr. E Meat   |  last reply