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Old Jan 20, 2015, 12:18 AM
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United States, CA, San Diego
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Soldering— what am I doing wrong? (Tinning)

Not sure if this is the right area to post...

So I turn on the iron, let it heat up, then I directly apply solder on it in an attempt to tin it. There's a lot of smoke (not sure how much is normal), and whatever liquid that's supposed to be there wasn't present, just turns brown and piles up. When I tin at a cleaner part of the tip, I can see shiny-ness but it just rolls up into a ball on the soldering wire.
Have never soldered before, what should I keep in mind?
I don't have the budget for a $100 iron though I know that it's worth it.
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 04:05 AM
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Staffs, UK
Joined Nov 2003
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What type of solder are you using ? Does it have flux in it ? Are you using a separate flux, if so what type ?

The tip has to be clean. It's normal to wipe it on damp sponge BEFORE applying the solder. And you need some flux either built into the solder or applied separately.

Steve
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 05:15 AM
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United States, NC, Newport
Joined Sep 2012
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Clean that tip!
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 07:21 AM
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United States, TX, Van Alstyne
Joined Dec 2014
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you can clean it till the cows come home. ... sometimes - most always actually - the tip will have areas that oxidize, and wont "tin".

Don't worry to much . Wipe it on sponge, then tap it on the bench before every solder joint.

When you solder you do not apply the solder to the iron anyway, but to the work. well, in theory.
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 07:45 AM
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Also make sure your solder says Resin core and not Acid core.
You can also buy solid solder with no flux.

Gord.
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 09:35 AM
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United States, CA, San Diego
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I'm using Kester pocket pack solder from Amazon. When I clean it the solder just turns black.
Also what is flux and how do I use it?
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 10:44 AM
Canadian Bacon
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Kingston, Canada
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Should say on the label ( 44 Rosin Core Solder)
It coats the parts to keep it from oxidizing

Gord.
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 11:28 AM
KC
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Joined Sep 2006
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Got to use flux. The flux helps the solder to flow. It's applied to the surfaces that is being soldered. Lots of 'how to' videos on YouTube. I can't imagine soldering without it.

Rosin solder paste flux from RS.
http://www.radioshack.com/2-oz-non-s...EARA&gclsrc=ds
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 02:41 PM
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The Netherlands, GE, Nijmegen
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Several (English) youtube solderings videos, tips and tricks, do's and don'ts in this thread
translate...www.modelbouwforum.nl/forums/model-elektronica/152358-solderen-dos-donts.html

And
Soldering discussions - RCG

Vriendelijke groeten Ron
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 07:58 PM
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Canada, ON, Owen Sound
Joined Oct 2008
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Your soldering iron may not be powerful enough to do the job either. A 30W iron will barely solder 16gauge wire, and likely not with a pencil point. I use a 40W for small stuff up to 20 gauge, and an 80W for everything up to 8Gauge wire. As mentioned the solder has to be for electrical connection, and should be rosin cored, along with the right size solder wire for the job. My solder wire for most jobs is less than 1/16". Too much diameter will pull the heat away faster than the iron can melt it, resulting in blobbing, no fusion. Both wire and connector must be tinned along with the iron to transfer the heat effectively. fwiw Doug B
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 09:01 PM
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Joined Jan 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seikurou View Post
Not sure if this is the right area to post...

So I turn on the iron, let it heat up, then I directly apply solder on it in an attempt to tin it. There's a lot of smoke (not sure how much is normal), and whatever liquid that's supposed to be there wasn't present, just turns brown and piles up. When I tin at a cleaner part of the tip, I can see shiny-ness but it just rolls up into a ball on the soldering wire.
Have never soldered before, what should I keep in mind?
I don't have the budget for a $100 iron though I know that it's worth it.
Attachment 7488026

What size wire are you trying to solder?

This tip looks like it got overheated, with burned flux on it. Take a magnet near the tip and determine if it's magnetic or iron plated.

If it's iron plated, do not file it with a file. That iron plating is thin, and removing it screws up the tip.

If the tip is bare copper, you can trim it up with a file, and immediately "Tin" it with rosen core flux. Un regulated irons can hit 900 or 1000 degrees F, and burnt tips are the result.

If you're soldering heavy wires on the order of #10 or #12 or so, a 100 watt temperature regulated iron can be purchased for about $65 or so, and that will last a long long time. This iron will easily solder just about anything that would be used on our electric models. It also has smaller 3/16 inch wide tips for the smaller stuff.

SOLDERING IRON 100 W
http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=59884
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Old Jan 20, 2015, 11:16 PM
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United States, CA, San Diego
Joined Oct 2014
15 Posts
Thanks for the info guys

I'm using a 40w iron from Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Weller-SP40NKU...soldering+iron

I realized that this area is for airplanes; I'm more worried about building multirotors. Not sure about the quality of above iron, but I'll have to stick to it for a while.

Are there any recommended fluxes I could get from a third party seller from Amazon/Ebay?
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Old Jan 21, 2015, 06:18 AM
Canadian Bacon
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Kingston, Canada
Joined Jun 2004
13,389 Posts
The Kester brand you have is very popular, just get it where it says '44' Rosin Core Solder on the label. A popular size for small stuff is 1mm or .039 " thou. If you can find just rosin flux while you're looking for solder, get a tin of it so you can use the solder you have. Just dip your solder in it and smear a bit it on the piece your soldering.
Welding shops and Radio shack carries it.

Gord.
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