Can nickel be soldered?

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by ErnieM, Jul 13, 2011.

  1. ErnieM

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    Just as the title says: Can nickel be soldered?

    My customer now wants to enclose my circuit within a nickle plated brass tube. Now brass solders just fine thank you but will nickel accept solder?

    (Dang my process guy is in Pennsylvania!)
  2. #12


    Nov 30, 2010
    The obvious answer: try it.
    I don't think so, but that's why I say, "try it".

    Can an aluminized steel oil pan be brazed? Right after you scrape off the aluminum.
    Can sub-C nicads be soldered? Right after you violate the coating with a diamond file.
    Can nickle coated brass be soldered? Right after you file the nickle off.

    Read my signature line.
  3. SgtWookie


    Jul 17, 2007
    You might consider using a permanent adhesive, something like J-B Weld (not J-B Quick). It's one of the few good ones that you can pick up just about anywhere, and good over quite a wide temp range.

    At a former employer, we had some "old pros" that did a very nice job soldering nickel-plated brass enclosures. They used large American Beauty soldering irons that put out plenty of heat, and usually Sn63/Pb37 solder.

    I wouldn't even try soldering a brass tube using your typical small iron; the tube would wick the heat away too quickly.
  4. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 15, 2009
    yes it can with an agressive flux application. We solder some nickle plated brass quick connect tabs at work. With enough/aggressive flux it works just fine.
  5. ErnieM

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    Thanks fellows. Picture a rectangular PCB wedged inside the metal tube from a pencil eraser. That's about my situation and I solder one point on the board to the tube for electrical contact.

    On my prototypes I used nickel plate on brass, but the plating did not extend into the tube so I was esentially soldering onto brass. I did try soldering direct on the outside of some extra tubes but the solder didn't have a good "flow." Heat is not as issue as I have lots of heat at my disposal, protos got reflowed with a hot air pencil.

    Production will be with a stamped tube, possibly solid nickel, and I was wondering if that would be trouble.

    Thanks for the assist!
  6. KJ6EAD

    Senior Member

    Apr 30, 2011