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Help With Scratch Built Caboose
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 Posted: Mon Sep 26th, 2016 02:33 am
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ON30Carl
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Continuing with the build, I
needed to work on the hardware such as railings
and ladders. Here are some pics of what I have.
This is my first venture in brass, used only hand
tools and a BurnsOmatic torch. [img][/img]
drilling the ladder


a bending jig for railings


the ladder




sorry about the blurry photo, just a pin vice anyway.
I will have to work on my soldering skills, not a
very good first attempt.
Thanks for looking and please comment!
Don't no why the pics are so big, I used
photo bucket.
Carl

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 Posted: Tue Sep 27th, 2016 04:55 am
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Thayer
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Carl,

Don't sell yourself short. Any first attempt is a great one and your technique will get closer to your expectations the more you practice.

Consider for a moment how many projects never get past "I'm going to build a ..." Merely by picking up the supplies and tools you are way past all those.

I would try applying a little flux to each joint during initial assembly and less solder. You might even find with the flux that there is enough solder simply from tinning the tip to get the job done.

Thayer

Last edited on Tue Sep 27th, 2016 05:07 am by Thayer

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 Posted: Tue Sep 27th, 2016 03:13 pm
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W C Greene
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"Tis better to actually build something than to sit and think about building something. Or tell someone else how they should build something."
Soldering is something that takes time to learn, you are doing fine. Just a small file and some patience and excess solder will vanish. After many years of trying to master this craft (soldering), I was shown that the flux is the thing. Now, I use TIX flux and my favorite old solder (just whatever is on the end of the iron) and the metal flows into the joint magically. You may find another type of flux but I like the Tix. And, if there are 35 modelers telling about soldering, there will be 39 different ways explained. patience and practice is all you need. Good luck and keep on working.

Woodie



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 Posted: Tue Sep 27th, 2016 04:27 pm
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Herb Kephart
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Another solder essential that (it looks like you have used) is enough heat. Not saying a higher temperature--if the solder is past the pasty stage and actually flows-- that's hot enough. What I mean by using enough heat, is volume--BTU or Calories, take your pick. The object that you are soldering should get hot enough in under a few seconds, that the solder will flow onto it. If this doesn't happen, you need more heat--which equals a larger soldering iron. Too many tyros try to solder a tender body, say, with an iron meant to be used to solder electrical wires. You can't do this. Well actually you can, a process which involves additional heat in the form of a torch, bringing, in this case, the tender body up to just below the melting temperature of solder--but then there is the danger of anything else soldered to the body falling off. Takes many years experience to pull this trick off. In this case the iron is only a device to apply the solder to the area. Don't try this trick at home. To large an iron is much better than too small. Aim to apply the iron to the area, have the solder flow into the joint in a manner of seconds, and remove the iron. This is the way to attach something close to another soldered feature successfully.

Lastly, and just as important is no movement of the joint, until the solder ''freezes'' as shiny metal. Any movement during this short period leaves a crystalline color, and a weak joint.

I've seen many learners joints, and I would put the list of important things in their order of failures-- from what I have seen.

Parts not clean enough
Parts not clean enough (yeah, it's that important)
Not enough heat (larger iron)
Movement before freeze (fingers are not always good clamps)
Not enough, or wrong flux. (usually beginners use more than necessary, but too much is much better than too little)

My Dad was a ''tin knocker'' and had me- as slave labor- soldering projects that he was making for sale at home, evenings, when I was eight. Seventy two years of breathing vaporized muraitic acid fumes (Great liquid flux). No Wonder I'm loony

breH



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 Posted: Tue Sep 27th, 2016 10:48 pm
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ON30Carl
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Thanks for the encouragement Woodie, Herb and Thayer.
I think part of the problem with the solder joints is
that I cleaned the rails of the ladder, but in my
enthusiasm to do this I neglected to clean the rungs.
I took a close look and there is plenty of oxidation
on the copper.
Thanks for the help gents!
Carl

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 Posted: Sat Oct 1st, 2016 01:21 am
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Si.
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Hi Carl

Lookin' good !!

I solder a lot of 'vintage' electronic-parts.
Even if the leads are tinned-copper...
...these old parts have much oxide on the surface.

I either scrape the leads with a scalpel...
...or use a bit of emery-paper on them.

The other one is.
When using a mini-torch...
...the thinner-bit, rung in your case, might not get heated as much as the thick bit.
Also applying the flame directly at the solder-blob, tends to burn-off the flux in resin-cored solder...
...rendering it less effective.

Might be some help.

:moose:

Si.

Nice prototype, the D&RGW style caboose !



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 Posted: Sat Oct 1st, 2016 04:36 pm
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W C Greene
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Well, you know...God loves idiots and I am one! As I wrote, I use TIX flux, it is cheaper than other brands and has the viscosity of water and I can apply it to even oxidized brass, etc. and still get things to work! As for torches, years ago I used the complicated Micro Flame torch with it's bottles which were forever running out...plus it was expensive ($40 bucks or so). Now, I have a little Bernz-O-Matic $6.95 butane job which is recharged with a cigarette lighter butane bottle and it does everything the old torch(es) could do. Yes, it is best to clean the parts first but I am so impatient that I say "what the hell" and just get after it. On something like the ladder, I would use an asbestos board (they are still available) and pin the parts down with some T pins, etc. Then cut tiny (itsy bitsy) pieces of the solder and put them where the parts join along with a brush load of flux. Just pass the torch over the parts and watch the solder wick into the joint probably without any filing, etc. to be done. Just wash the finished part with water & some detergent and it's done. I would advise getting "the hang" of this on some scrap metal but it is very easy to control. I know this is a simplistic explanation but that is what I do...simple tricks from a simpleton.
I figure that the 10 bucks or so spent on flux & torch will be paid back with the first nice job and you will love telling everybody that "I made all this myself" anyway.

Woodie



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 Posted: Sat Oct 1st, 2016 11:12 pm
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Helmut F
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interesting, I am sure I am more of a newb at soldering than Carl.

do most people use some kind of torch rather than the typical iron?

also, is solder containing lead still available? or is the newer stuff all high temp? in the computer industry everything now has to be made with hi temp (generally silver) solder - most shops have the hang of it now but when this started it caused issues. Issues do still crop up once in a while though.

Last edited on Sat Oct 1st, 2016 11:12 pm by Helmut F



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 Posted: Sun Oct 2nd, 2016 02:02 am
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W C Greene
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Well, I use both iron & torch. making something delicate with several parts to be attached "at one time" seems to require a small torch. Whatever works for you. I use "store grade" solder, small diameter rosin core, so I can also use it on electrical connections. The small amount of rosin in a tiny bit (as described above) doesn't worry me, the TIX flux (not for electrical work) makes the solder wick nicely. TIX and others make various solders with different melting points, a look on the net may de-mystify different uses. Any more, I tend to make stuff from styrene but sometimes need a metal piece or so. This is all just my opinion, I am sure there are many others with differing views.

Woodie



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 Posted: Wed Oct 19th, 2016 10:21 pm
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W C Greene
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Carl, hows'it coming?

Woodie



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