Soldering

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End2end
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Re: Soldering

Postby End2end » Sat Sep 08, 2018 12:14 pm

@Bigglesof266
Try using a spade bit in the soldering iron. Tin the track and the wire, then trap the wire bewtween soldering iron tip and track to solder on.
It should melt the solder straight away.
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Bigglesof266
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Re: Soldering

Postby Bigglesof266 » Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:14 am

Thanks End2end.

I always tin both parts in any soldering job I do. Similiarly make sure I clean and tin the tip prior to placing them together and bringing the iron to the parts for the solder to melt and form a joint.

I use quality solder.

Tried spade bits before. Quicker heat transfer with accurate application of the flat edge for sure.

Regardless, temps are set too as I always pretest on a piece of spare rail. Hot enough for the solder to flow pretty much immediately, and if timing isn't gauged perfectly, risks a chair rail retainer distorting so the that chair and possibly another or others adjacent won't positively retain the rail. Same issue with applying lower temp for longer. Heat transfers along the rail other than just the locality of the join, and those minuscule retainers on the chairs can distort.

Not all the time, but the chairs are so fragile, the temp and time applied seems to be super critical. Same results whether using my variable temp station or Pro's Kit fixed 30W. Is it just me or is this normal, and frustrating part and parcel of the task?

Mike Parkes
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Re: Soldering

Postby Mike Parkes » Sun Sep 09, 2018 9:36 am

The tinning of parts and heating them together so the solder melts together is metalwork soldering, For electronic soldering as you heat the parts the solder is applied. Suppose its open to judgement when soldering a wire to a rail which approach to take and I tend to apply both as in my experience the quantum of solder on a tinned rail and tinned wire is insufficient to ensure the wire remains attached to the rail.

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Bufferstop
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Re: Soldering

Postby Bufferstop » Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:32 pm

The way we use solder to attach wires to rails would not meet with the approval of the BSI and it's predecessors. The requirement for government contract work was always that solder was applied only after a firm mechanical joint had been made. This is of course totally impossible when the metal you are fastening to is a running rail. If you can solder droppers to the rails before they are laid you have the whole underside of the foot to solder onto. If it's flexi track you have an advantage, use a black permanent marker to spot the points where the droppers are to be attached, cut the plastic web and slider the sleeper bases away from the spot, make you soldered joint, don't let the wire move until the solder has gone solid. If the surface of the joint goes a flat grey colour you have a "dry" joint, it will be weak and may fail prematurely, so wait for the heat in the rails to dissipate and apply the iron and cored solder again, you want a nice shiny metallic look to the solder. When it's all cooled down slider the sleeper bases back into position.
No one has mentioned them but a "solder sucker" is a very useful aid. It looks like a large syringe with a silicon rubber nozzle and a button on the side. It's plunger is spring loaded. If you end up with solder where you don't want it, you press the plunger until it clicks, apply the iron until the solder runs, put the nozzle against the solder then press the button. The plunger snaps back, the flowing solder is drawn into the nozzle. Pushing the plunger in again should eject the removed solder out of the end. Does make undoing soldering easier.
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Bigglesof266
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Re: Soldering

Postby Bigglesof266 » Sun Sep 09, 2018 6:05 pm

Solder sucker. I did -mention it. Two or three posts prior. I have one. Use it routinely.

The problem soldering model rail is that heat 'n plastic don't mix. Cutting the web and getting the plastic out of the way seems the pragmatic compromise solution.

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alex3410
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Re: Soldering

Postby alex3410 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:23 am

https://youtu.be/viEqNrL9HaY

I have done a quick video on how i solder wire to track, this is my method which works for me, your results may vary :lol:

I used to hate soldering with a passion and while its still not my favourite thing in the world this method makes the job a fair bit easier

b308
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Re: Soldering

Postby b308 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 9:06 am

That looks fine Alex, except I would use a file or glass fibre brush to clean the rails, using the knife will blunt it! As an aside after tinning the wire I bend it at right angles before soldering to the rail, probably makes no difference but we all have our own methods as you say!

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alex3410
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Re: Soldering

Postby alex3410 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 9:43 am

I did start by bending the wire before hand but found doing it this way keeps fingers away from the iron (learnt that the hard way :lol: ) & makes it easier to hold against the rail.

I don't have a fibre glass brush, it would work better & again i used to use one but didn't like the shards that broke off from using it - its also me being lazy as i have the knife to hand.

It really is a trial and error until you find something that works for you & it will evolve as you do it - for example i want to try liquid flux as i think it will be easier working my way as you can dip it in, not that i am going to need new flux for a long time!

b308
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Re: Soldering

Postby b308 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:14 am

I just didn't want you blunting all your knives! ;)

Re flux, I use both, I do as you do when tinning and soldering wire by using the more "solid" flux but when I am making brass kits I use a liquid flux... Horses for courses...

4472
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Re: Soldering

Postby 4472 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 1:46 pm

What make of flux, and where do you buy it. I only need a small tin not an industrial size pot
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alex3410
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Re: Soldering

Postby alex3410 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 1:54 pm

This is what i use

your right about wanting a small tin, you don't use a lot of it so it will last a long time

4472
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Re: Soldering

Postby 4472 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 10:24 pm

Thanks Alex3410. I have placed an order
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4472
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Re: Soldering

Postby 4472 » Tue Sep 25, 2018 4:57 pm

Had my first try today. Successfully joined a wire to some streamline track. I had a problem keeping the solder on the bit, which is a pointed one. The solder is a gash length I found in my toolbox, so that could be the problem. The iron is a 30w with no name on it. Is a flat chamfered bit better as the tip is removable but I haven't a clue on where to get the correct spares. Also do the Antex irons come with a selection of tips.


The join by the way was not very neat but that may improve with practice


I have discovered an 75w weller in the garage, so my give that a try. The name on the other on is just the initials GS
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BuffyMcBuffer
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Re: Soldering

Postby BuffyMcBuffer » Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:28 pm

4472 wrote:Had my first try today. Successfully joined a wire to some streamline track. I had a problem keeping the solder on the bit, which is a pointed one. The solder is a gash length I found in my toolbox, so that could be the problem. The iron is a 30w with no name on it. Is a flat chamfered bit better as the tip is removable but I haven't a clue on where to get the correct spares. Also do the Antex irons come with a selection of tips.


The join by the way was not very neat but that may improve with practice


I have discovered an 75w weller in the garage, so my give that a try. The name on the other on is just the initials GS



Grind the tip to a fine point weller and gs are good brands

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Bufferstop
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Re: Soldering

Postby Bufferstop » Tue Sep 25, 2018 10:45 pm

75watt is a bit on the large size, I'd keep it well away from any plastic bits. I have a 60watt Weller that I use when joining metal to metal. When my temperature controlled iron died I did use it on the track, but it was a tricky job and I was glad when the replacement for the other one arrived.
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