While on the subject of solder.......

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by PackratKing, Jul 2, 2011.

  1. PackratKing

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Jul 13, 2008
    Tin-lead solder will be banished from EU market?........... I happened to open this aged thread ... 1430 days old ... and sooner than resurrect it, I figured to start a more modern dialog, since this seems to be the way this nanny-<snip> government of ours is bound to roll sooner than later......:mad:

    For many years now, in my electronic work, I have been using the tin/silver alloy solder, and dedicated paste flux, both produced by "Oatey"

    Granted, it is primarily intended for sweat-soldering copper plumbing for lead-free potable water pipes. Available at homey-depot or lowes on the east coast anyway,

    Laugh if you must, ......... it works quite well........The "Oatey" flux yields a really nice bright tinned surface on your ironclad or straight-up copper tips, which allows good conductivity of heat to any component joint.

    I haven't noticed any radical deterioration of tips kept tinned, though I seldom leave an iron idle for long. Though like everyone else, I waltz off now and then, and forget to turn the iron off..........the tips still corrode and form heavy oxide same as other solder-and-flux systems.

    The solder sets up almost as quickly as 63/37 eutectic, and it is hard to make a cold joint. Some here mentioned that it doesn't produce the shiny joint that 63/37 does, though observation will show it does make a good solid joint.

    For other jobs, I have gone as far as powdering the solder, and making a paste with the flux, and for the application, it is the bomb.
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2011
  2. someonesdad

    Senior Member

    Jul 7, 2009
    Sounds good -- is the flux is rated for use with electronics? I would worry about some component in it causing a potential reliability problem down the road. For example, some plumbing solders contain acids in the flux which are known to cause corrosion problems in electrical joints because they are difficult to clean off.
  3. tom66

    Senior Member

    May 9, 2009
    I heard that silver solder is generally not a good idea because it is prone to form silver whiskers than other types of solder (which can form tin whiskers, but are less prone to do so.) I don't know about how accurate this is though?
  4. PackratKing

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Jul 13, 2008
    I have heard of the whisker phenom, tho' have yet to run across it.

    Will have to watch closer and update, -- as with copper plumbing , I have yet to see any corrosion related to flux after the fact............What I would love to be able to do is clean pipe joints and follow up with some protocol [ clearcoat ? ] to stop pipes from sweating and forming the green copper "patina" months or years down the road.
  5. SgtWookie


    Jul 17, 2007
    Many years ago, Hughes Space & Communications launched a satellite that worked as specified for a number of years, but suddenly went dead. After a lot of analysis, it was determined that the all-tin solder used had grown "whiskers" that shorted out one of the signal paths, causing the spacecraft to become useless. Pure tin is NOT a good thing to use as a solder. There are alloys available that have high tin content, but with other metals that resist the formation of whiskers.

    I have not heard of such a problem with silver solder.

    The advantage of Sn63/Pb37 eutectic is that it has no "plastic" state; as it cools, it goes directly from liquid to solid.

    There are actually a surprisingly large number of soldering alloys available.