Blaster Quick Reference - Hints and tips - SOLDERING
Few tips on soldering…
I know you can get lead free solder but it really is a shit of a thing to work with. I use stuff with lead in it. I use this: https://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/cE8LwHUG
Solder comes with flux in it usually, which is good, and flux is your friend. Doesn’t hurt to add more, makes the solder flow really nice. That way it’s a quick job and you don’t end up melting stuff. This is great flux: https://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/jgogX36
some cheap flux can be corrosive so it’s always best to clean it off when you’re done. I use this from jaycar: https://www.jaycar.com.au/electronic-circuit-board-cleaner-spray-can/p/NA1008
always helps to ‘tin’ the end of a wire with a bit of solder before you solder it to something and sometimes tin the thing your soldering it to. Some chrome looking connectors sometimes don’t want to let the solder take to them unless you get them really hot. If you scratch them up a bit first with knife/sandpaper/file etc (then clean it up with that spray or alcohol if you used sandpaper) flux it then it will tin beautifully.
get good soldering iron tips. It’s worth it. Keep them clean and shiny. Don’t let them get too hot. ONLY use them for soldering. If you need to use a soldering iron to melt something like plastic, use an old shitty tip for that.
Get a soldering iron with adjustable temperature. That way if your trying to solder something big that needs a lot of heat you can crank it up. Remember to turn it down again immediately after. (So the heat doesn’t screw up the tip)
don’t solder to stuff that is turned on /has battery connected.
DON’T solder directly to lipo batteries
those gas powered soldering irons that aldi has are a good second soldering iron for where you can’t get power for your normal one. They are also good if you’re trying to solder to a big chunk of metal and can’t get it hot enough. Use the gas one and your 240v one at the same time to heat the thing up enough THEN solder on the wire.
A bendy arm with an alligator clip on it is good for holding wires so you can keep everything still and not burn your fingers.
put heat shrink on your wires so things don’t short out. (and remember to put it on before you solder, I still forget sometimes haha)
DON’T EVER be tempted to solder a wire that you’re going to put in a screw connector terminal. It makes a really shitty connection. They can become loose because the solder is soft, or as the solder oxidises. Then it can arc and melt shit. People have burnt their house down from doing this on the heat bed connector on their 3D printer. If you’re not happy with a screw terminal clamping onto copper wire directly, get a crimp connector that goes over the wire. Then screw to that.
Oh, and get a good multimeter. Great for checking if there is a broken connection, voltage of something…
Oh and the final tip on soldering… If it smells like burnt chicken, your holding the wrong end.
Check out rc model reviews or xjet. Same guy different channel but has a great tutorial on soldering.
Stay away from lead free solder. Only use black heat shrink. Get a haiko adjustable soldering iron. Expensive but will be the last soldering station you buy
This is good flux/soldering fluid for making soldering easy… it is ‘Bakers soldering fluid’ …It is something that will last for years. My bottle I bought in the 90’s and is still going. I just have a long art/hobby brush and when I am going to solder something, I brush a little on the pad to be soldered on to, then tin it… the solder sticks like shit to a blanket… rather than rolling off. Then brush a little on the wire and tin that… then stick the two together. Yes, it is $25 bux… but it is 250ml … I have seen 10ml bottles of similar stuff for $10… so, unless you knock it over, it will last for ever…