View single post by mwiz64
 Posted: Mon Aug 27th, 2012 06:55 pm
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Joined: Mon Mar 26th, 2012
Location: Fenton, Michigan USA
Posts: 1329
I've done a fair amount of electrical soldering in my days. I make my own battery packs for R/C airplanes so I've soldered lots of batteries together and lots of connectors and lots of wire splices. Some of it has been very high current stuff so it's not all tiny either. In fact, I'll bet most of my soldering isn't as fine as a lot of the soldering done on a brass locomotive. I can certainly agree with the need for having the proper temperature to melt the solder and the proper amount of heat stored in the tip to get a quick heat transfer. Too much heat left too long on a loco I'm sure does create problems with other parts falling off. That same thing(staying on the parts too long with the heat)can wreck electronics or melt wire insulation. So yes, to get a good quick heat transfer is key to making good soldering joints.... and having clean parts and a clean soldering tip are a big part of that.

I've always used a 40 watt and an 80 watt soldering iron for my work. I don't think anything more would be of any benefit but having the right size tip is huge. If the tip is too small it won't hold enough heat to get a proper transfer. Wipe the tip with a wet sponge prior to every joint soldered to make sure the tip is clean. I clean all my parts with alcohol first and I many times will sand them slightly too to give the solder something to hang on to. If you sand them wipe them clean with the alcohol again before soldering. If at all possible hold the parts perfectly still until the solder hardens. Any solder joint that isn't a bit shiny is a cold solder joint and will be subject to failure down the road.

If I were building brass locos I'd look at getting a resistance set from American Beauty. Take a look.

I don't think I'll be building any brass models anytime soon but I certainly can appreciate the effort one puts into such a effort.


Last edited on Mon Aug 27th, 2012 07:00 pm by mwiz64

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