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.

Posted by aliasjanedoe 8 years ago

I just bought a soldering iron!

   So im new to the soldering world as well as the small electronics and circuit world. I do know a little about restance capacitance and inductance. But I was wondering if anyone had any good ideas for me to get started off with. I have an old TV, Im not sure if I can use my soldering iron to de-solder it, that I can strip down for parts.      My new soldering iron is  a 20w to 40w, Im not sure what range I need though. If anyone knows any fun easy DIYs that I can do to get started please let me know!!  Thanks!

Posted by crazed rhetoric 8 years ago

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.

Posted by fiola 10 years ago

Soldering: Shaky hands. TIps anyone?

I enjoy electronics work, but all of my joints turn out bad because my hands seem to develop cerebral palsy when I want to hold them still. any tips? pointers?

Posted by bardon08 10 years ago

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

Posted by Mrlzeppelin 8 years ago

Eteyo T862++ Experiences

Hi, I have noticed various youtube videos of people using the Eteyo T862++ but could not find any reviews about this product.  I am pretty tempted in getting one myself but was wondering if anyone else has experiences with it.  Thanks in advance.

Posted by milaswp 4 years ago

Finished Soldering press! check it out

I finished my soldering press. it has a video too!

Posted by DELETED_DELETED_kruser495 10 years ago

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!

Posted by Joe426 10 years ago

where to buy micro-tip soldering iron?

Anybody know a good place to order a soldering iron with a very small tip? I want it for working with 0603 LEDs. I can't find replacement tips for my current soldering iron. Something not too expensive would be nice.

Posted by aliasjanedoe 9 years ago

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.

Posted by sardines454 11 years ago

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.

Posted by trainman707 10 months ago

Soldering iron

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

Posted by kaseyraex3 10 years ago

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  

Posted by stupidityisanart 6 years ago

Looking for a socket I can solder

I am looking for a standard (e-26) light bulb socket with two pins so I can solder it to a printed circuit board.  Any ideas where I can find one?

Posted by Fettda 4 years ago

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.

Posted by ScubaSteve 9 years ago

I'm looking for a lead free soldering station.

Hey everyone, I'm looking for a lead free soldering station. I have to do some soldering/desoldering at work and I'm having a problem. The solder on the board is too high of a temp for my trusty Radio Shack soldering iron. To date I've purchased a 50watt iron and I would say that almost did the trick. But, desoldering was a fail. So, I would like to get a professional strength iron that can do the work without breaking my budget ($120). At this point I don't know what to look at 60 or 70 watt or 80. So, if anyone can recommend a good digital lead free solder station? Thanks Everyone!

Posted by ChrisMc74 4 years ago

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 Link to survey:

Posted by solderotter 3 years ago

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!

Posted by airhead12 9 years ago

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: Thank you for your time and input! also, does anyone know why there is so much metal exposed towards the tip?

Posted by solderotter 4 years ago

Recommend any soldering kits for kids, ages 9-12?

I volunteer for Sonoma County 4-H and want to do electronic kits for our kids, ages 9-12. Please recommend any electronic kits that kids of that age may do (with parents help) and would be fun to use. For example, the Simon kit from Sparkfun is a great project for kids, whth some help from parents. 

Posted by phatguppy 7 years ago

Need fine soldering help

I need help soldering some fine three conductor (two plus shield) to a batch of ten very tiny Knowles SiSonic MEMS microphones: 2.75mm L x 1.85mm W x 1.00mm H I have some yards of the coax on a spool that a tech friend gave me long ago and have no idea where I could get more.  It is flattened and is narrower and thinner than the MEMS.  Picture included of cable, MEMS and a sewing pin for reference. My 70 year old hands are just not still enough any more for the task (if they ever were) and I'm willing to pay to get it done.  Getting the coax end splayed for the photo seriously taxed my ability.  :-)

Posted by dgateley 4 years ago

repairing a separated copper

I was assembling a 3D Xmas Tree from Velleman-Kit when one of the pads come off the board. Is there a way restore the connection so that the kit will work?

Posted by 08techgrad 5 years ago

Desoldering without the right tools.

I am interested in desoldering a few things to get some parts.  However I bought desoldering braid quite a while ago and have no idea where it is.  I do not have the money to buy a pump (no matter how cheap it may be).  So I was wondering if there was anything else I could use or do.  I do own a soldering iron. I am just playing around with a few project ideas with electronics I had laying around and a few things I have taken out of the garbage.

Posted by jcaresheets 7 years ago

Can I use a dpdt center off?

I recently tried out this project Now I dont have any idea how to read a schematic, but looking at the various photos, and a diagram that someone posted, I did a pretty good job of putting it together. I didn't realize that I had bought a dpdt center off switch until the the store I bought it from closed.  So, I wired the center off switch just like the regular dpdt switch is wired in this diagram. Im guessing that I need to wire it differently, because Im getting unexpected results. Any advice would be golden, thanks a lot.

Posted by doctorly 5 years ago

Woot! My first True SMD soldering job!

Yay! I finally soldered my first SMD chip package! (And it didn't explode!)

Posted by T3h_Muffinator 10 years ago

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).

Posted by kcedgerton 9 years ago

Need a good soldering station (in uk)

Hey guys, im looking for some recommendation for a good soldering station that is available in the uk and less than 60 pound, preferably a well known brand. thanks

Posted by Cew27 9 years ago

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!

Posted by Sandisk1duo 10 years ago

Lead Free Solder Recommendations

Hello, I am going to be working on some electronics projects soon and was wondering if anyone had recommendations for lead-free solder. Some completed projects are going to be shipped to the EU, California and New York so I need to start paying attention to RoHS standards. I was hoping to get pointed in some sort of direction to avoid buying a dozen different kinds and figuring it out myself. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Knowledge regarding previous experience with lead-free solder and electronics would be awesome. Thanks in advance.

Posted by cunnane 10 years ago

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?

Posted by The Ideanator 9 years ago

Quick SMD question

I am just getting into SMD work for PCB's & I was curious when I am using the electric skillet method for solder reflow does the PCB have to sit on the skillet itself or can it slowly pass over & the heat that is coming up from the skillet still cause the solder to flow like it would sitting on top.

Posted by sofiadragon1979 5 years ago

Two loss wires to solder on stereo wireless hp's, both red, which one goes where using multimeter?

Hi, I have two disconnected red wires on the left side cups that need reconnecting to the, -L  & 3V on the board which you can see on the image below. My question as a multi-meter novice, how do a test to know which red wire goes to which point? Also is there any danger of overheating the board on so small solder points? Any help much appreciated

Posted by Optical10 6 years ago

power hack

Aside from it being an ugly hack, is there any reason I can't strip the wire back from the end of a printer power cable and solder it to the plug terminals of a 5v wall wart transformer? This shouldn't be a fire hazard since the power cord should be rated correctly, correct?

Posted by randofo 10 years ago

Need some help with soldering and iPod mod

Hey guys, Relatively new here and would appreciate any advice. I decided to revive an old and dead iPod (30gb 5g video) when I came across a very old article by fstedie. Basically swapped the hard drive for an SD one and now have increased storage (30gb to 256gb). So now, I'm trying to add an internal Bluetooth feature to the device and would like some help on the best type of Bluetooth transmitter to purchase. Secondly, I'm curious to know how I would be able to pair the iPod to other devices without having to open it up each time. The instructable by fstedie doesn't explain how this would work. Thirdly, where do I solder the Bluetooth module on to on the motherboard? A diagram or detailed description would be great as I'm quite good at soldering with instructions even though I know nothing about electronics Thanks in advance :)

Posted by CoCoN3 2 years ago

Two loss wires to solder on stereo wireless hp's, both red, which one goes where using multimeter?

Hi, I have two disconnected red wires on the left side cups that need reconnecting to the L- & 3V on the board which you can see on the image below. My question as a multi-meter novice, how do a test to know which red wire goes to which point? Also is there any danger of overheating the board on so small solder points? Any help much appreciated

Posted by Optical10 6 years ago

Disconnected Wires

So I'm working on a heart sensor, and pulled out the wires. I think I can fix it with a  little bit of solder, because after 20 or 30 minutes of negotiating, i can usually re-establish the connection to the sensor. But I tried just now, and it isn't working. Help??

Posted by kate1171 3 years ago

Any way to fix delamination?

As you can see from the image, I accidentally ripped off a copper pad on my PCB. This is my first time really soldering anything, so I somewhat expected it, but still... Is there any way to fix it? I can't really seem to find too many solutions. 

Posted by The Manic Puppeteer 3 years ago

digital soldering glasses... i need inSIGHT.

I have a idea, to create digital soldering glasses but don't have any inclinations on what direction to go or what mats. to use. I have entertained microscope lenses, ben franklin-esk, lenses (not digital),surveillance pens( not sure how to zoom them),phone cameras( no idea how they zoom either (not in a diy fasion)) a small screen to a hacked digital camera scope, I am a experienced circuit developer with limited understanding of optics. so here is the question if not "think tank" disclosure. if you were to make "zoom glasses" what you use and why.  other low tech to turn digital to be jewelry quality scopes. magnifying lenses for eyeglass repair, etc.     thanks for your time and consideration.

Posted by CD_tatro 3 years ago

What soldering station do I get?

Ok, all, I've got a good one for you, and I'm sure all the diehard fans are gonna come out of the woodwork.  I've been looking for some time for a decent soldering station that I can start doing PCB/fine work with.  I used to have a Weller digital rework station a long time ago, but don't know what might be good now.  I've gotten back into doing small work, such as SMC, XBee, Arduino, rework, and the like, almost all on a very small scale, and I've pushed the Radio Shack special I've got to the limit, and managed to brick two routers. I need to know your opinions, on stations ranging up to $300 (preferably around $100 to $200), that would be good for me.  I know that this is more than likely going to upset many in the 'ible community, being willing to spend that much, but when I get started doing some of this major device hacking, I'm going to start putting my stuff up here.  I'm looking forward to a lot of cool stuff, but can't get it done without the right tools.  There are too many different stations out there, and not enough reviews, especially after searching for nearly a month.  Can anyone help?

Posted by tmoore4748 7 years ago

where did you learn about electronics?

Basically where and how did you learn about electronics (wiring, circuits, diodes, soldering, etc)? you guys make great stuff and i want to do that too. so any books, websites, etc will help. just let me know how you did it. thanks. and please dont say much aobut college. i can do that option. thanks

Posted by leader1 9 years ago

adding remote button to halloween screamer device

Hello! I am pretty new to all this. In fact, this is my first project. down to the dirty part. I have a battery powered screamer toy. It has a light sensor with a toggle switch and a push button that both activate the speaker.  I want to add an external button in place of the internal one located on the circuit board.  I have added a length of wire to the board already.  One end to the contact push button on the board, and the other to the point that connected to the other end of the contact push button. I scraped the copper off between the point where the second wire connected to the contact push button so now the only way they connect is through the added wire and tactile button.  My problem is this.... none of it works now. Not even the light sensor.  Please help!

Posted by Madonk 5 years ago

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.

Posted by UltraPurple 6 years ago

can i fix the tip of my soldering iron

I have this soldering iron that i totaly messed up. i didnt treet it well when i first got it and now i want to kno if it is even fixable. the tip is not only flat but the only part of it that is able to melt the solder is the size of a pin. im cash strapped and want to kno if there is some way short of buying a new tip to not only make it be able to melt the solder but to some how get it to be somewhat of pointed again. thanx

Posted by lurkingshaddow 10 years ago

Need some soldering help

Hey, I'm working on a distortion pedal for my guitar.  All went well for the most part, I'm getting power to the components on the board, but I'm having problems with the dpdt switch, specifically this one: I'm new to soldering, and I've had no problems getting the components on the pcb, but this thing is another story.  I've tried soldering wires to the terminals, but it doesn't stick to them.  Should I even be using solder to connect this or is there something else I should be doing?

Posted by MGZero 8 years ago

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)

Posted by TashaDax 6 years ago

SMD Soldering without Soldermask?

I'm working on a project and I needed to get a PCB made. I was planning on getting it from BatchPCB, but I ran into a little problem... I'm using a NAND Flash chip, which is TSSOP48; the footprint has 6mil spacing! (BatchPCB has a 8mil minimum) The next cheapest solution would be Barebones PCB, which makes prototype PCBs without soldermask & silkscreen. I'm worried about soldering on the Flash chip, and another LQFP48. Will the lack of a soldermask make it impossible to do?

Posted by zachninme 10 years ago

Simple, yet Confusing.

I have this Soldering Iron. It takes 4 AA's @ 6V, and 8W or 11W. My reasons aside, I want to make it into an AC Soldering Iron now. I have various Plug-in adapters, and the one I chose Outputs @ 9V, 100mA. So sticking with the 11W setting, the Soldering Iron: > 1.83 Amps; 6 Volts; 11 Watts; And the plug.. > .01 Amps; 9 Volts; .09 Watts; So, what are my options? I got one.. find a plug with a higher current output :P

Posted by NarNar 9 years ago

Soldering aluminium and stainless steel - input for an Instructable

I am currently working on a new Instructable covering the topic of soldering aluminium and stainless steel. As I am "old school" and don't like to waste money on special equippment unless really necessary, I would like to get some feedback on what to include. So far I covered the basics of the materials, the general how to and what to llok out for. Pics and videos will be made once I am happy with the tutorials to give a better understanding. Aluminium is considered to be hard to solder with no experience and I would like to try to make it possible for the hobbiest to do it, same for stainless steel. For example: Should I include my recepies for stainless steel fluxes or limit it to the procedure of actually doing it without any flux? Is is better to document with nice pictures or videos showing the entire process? (asking the noobs that want to learn it) Is it necessary to go into details like what solder alloy is best for the purpose? For me it is quite hard to go back to a "I know nothing about it state" and make sure everything a noob might need is included. But the longer I work on it the bigger the Instructable is getting with informations that not everyone might need, like how to properly clean the surface, remove the oxide layerand provide the right temperature for the job. Trying to keep it simple but complete and not drifting into boring details is harder than I tough on this topic :( Feedback and requests are welcome!

Posted by Downunder35m 3 years ago

where to learn about programming and electronics?

Ok so i want to start learning about programming and electronics (wiring, soldering, circuits, etc). where do you guys learn ur stuff from with the exception of college? i need any books, websites, etc that you used to hone ur craft so i too can learn. thanks

Posted by leader1 9 years ago

Can someone give me a quick hand putting this circuit together?

I've begun to try to put together this circuit myself. I have all the parts, but I'm horrible at reading schemas. I've failed 4 times now, and only managed to get a little movement from the motor once. I've read a couple tutorials on reading schemas, so I know most of the symbols, but actually putting them together is a whole new deal for me. I'm trying to get a photo cell to regulate the power of a motor without starving it of power. Could someone please give me a bit of direction as to how I solder the parts together (i.e. solder resistor to the left lead of the transistor etc.)? Thank you for the help. :)

Posted by sciguy77 9 years ago