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From: firstname.lastname@example.org (N. Thornton)
Subject: Re: old thread Re: DIY Soldering iron tips
Date: 28 Oct 2002 13:46:04 -0800
NNTP-Posting-Date: 28 Oct 2002 21:46:04 GMT
email@example.com (bogax) wrote in message news:<firstname.lastname@example.org>...
> OK, I know I'm late.
> (came across this while looking for John Popelish' original description
> of his technique for etching PCBs by floating on FeCl, to refer a friend
> to. Thanks John :)
> I have made my own soldering iron tips or refurbished those paramagneticaly
> heat controlled Weller tips (which seem to me to be getting harder and harder
> to find)
> I always used nickel plating over the copper.
> A little nickel chloride in hydrochloric acid for plating solution,
> and a lab supply with the current limit set for a 100-200ma
> I believe nickel chloride is rather hideously poisonous.
> And by the by, it's easy enough to remove the little bit of paramagnetic
> alloy (or what ever it's called) from those Weller tips and attach it to
> a similar tip that doesn't have it (but is probably easier to find)
> >ozi wrote:
> >> G'day,
> >> I have a lathe an all different types of metal and was considering the
> >> possibility of making my own 'custom' soldering iron tips. Can anyone
> >> tell me if they're made of a special type of metal or if they're plated
> >> with anything.
> >> I was going to use stainless steel.
> >I think you will have trouble getting the solder to wet stainless
> >(which is stainless because it coats itself with a protective oxide
> >layer), though if you use a very active acid flux, you might get it
> >coated. But never use acid flux for electronic soldering after the tip
> >is tinned. It is strictly for plumbing use.
> >Cheap bits are pure copper, or high copper alloys, but copper wets
> >with solder so well because it dissolves in it. Pure iron (low alloy)
> >is only very slightly soluble in solder, so it is consumed many times
> >slower than copper, but is a poorer conductor of heat (and stainless
> >is worse than iron). So the best bits are pure copper inside, for
> >heat transfer, with a pure iron plating for long life. Remember that
> >any iron surface that is to be wet with solder must be fluxed before
> >heating and tinned immediately upon heating to get it covered with a
> >protective layer of solder before it oxidizes or solder will roll off
> >it like water off a duck.
> >John Popelish
I saw some soldering irons once that used a 4" nail with its head cut
off as the bit. They seemed to work OK, but the bit wasn't removable.
A novel approach :)
Iron plated copper is the norm, with plain copper for the cheapo ones.
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