Intro: How to Solder: Beading
This is my contribution to the "How to Solder Group", in an effort to get a fancy Instructables patch.
I have fidgety hands and subsequently find it quite hard sometimes to solder small joints, and so I invented a soldering technique I like to call "Beading". It involves making a small ball of lead solder and then placing it on the joint. But there's more to it....I guess...
Step 1: Materials, Tools and Other Misc Crap
My first major soldering project was a robot kit I got for Christmas this year, and I thouroughly enjoyed it, even though it only took me 2 days to complete. It was an "Escape Robot" Link as labelled by the packaging, and involved using infrared diodes that sent out signals which then bounced back off obstacles to the IR reciever back on the robot, in which case it would turn around and start moving again. It was quite interesting, seeing something I soldered and put some hard work into work so well. Of course there was some troubleshooting involving some weak, consequently broken solder points.
'Nuff chit-chat, here it is.
Your usual soldering materials, whatever you're soldering/test pieces.
Usual soldering tools, small piece of metal or wood, about 3-4 inches wide and long.
Step 2: Make the Bead
Melt the solder wire into a ball and continue to melt more of the wire until it is the size of your liking. I recomend doing this on the metal or wood I had in the materials list.
Step 3: Using the Bead
Apply the bead to the joint you are soldering, this is especially helpful for small joints, as you have a lot of control over how much solder goes onto it.
Note: Something I always thought was cool was to put the soldering iron on the solder and see a wave of shininess coat the lead. :D