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jimbob

soldering iron

9 posts in this topic

I was once told not to clean the end of soldering irons. Is this true, if not whats the best way to do it?

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Hi Jim Bob

I use a damp sponge to clean my iron's tip. You can get them from Maplins and not very expensive.

Just wipe the hot tip over the sponge. This way the tip remains tinned and ready to use.

Hope this helps.

Dave

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Using anything more abrasive than a damp sponge (such as a file or sandpaper), can damage the surface of the tip, which will prevent the solder from flowing.

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Having taught the use of soldering Irons in the past I'd agree both of the above two comments are correct.

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Correct, one other thing is when you are soldering not to have the tip too hot and it will melt the wiring and cause the solder not to stick same when soldering the track. You can get heat shrink clamps for that issue and to cool the tip down I use the sponge again till it does.

Some soldering irons you can adjust, even though I have a good Weller I can't adjust the heat, have to inside the iron too much mucking around, should of paid a lot more and got the next model up as it you could adjust the heat.

Tony from down under

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Not suprisingly, I have a fully adjustable soldering iron ( which also has a heat gun from the same controller). Having been caught in the past by a manufacturer, who decided to stop making the line of Irons (and tips) I was using. When choosing an iron, I went for one that used a common type of tip , so I was able to buy a range of different tip shapes and sizes. Using the correct size of tip for the job makes life a lot easier.

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You can turn a soldering iron into a variable heat one by wiring it through a dimmer switch.

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Not always, many have a temperature sensor or are temperature controlled by the type of tip fitted. Fitting a dimmer switch May cause the tip to cycle through a range of temperatures as it hunts to try to get to it's normally specified point. the bog standard cheaper irons it may well work for.

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