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Old 08-10-20, 07:17 PM   #1
Daox
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Default Tricks to soldering thickish wire

So, I don't work with electronics a ton, but I have soldered my fair share of things over the years. I typically use a 20W soldering iron and it seems to do darn near everything I need. However, the power wires broke on my 3d printer lately, and I replaced them with 12 gauge thin stranded wire. First off, my 20W iron wouldn't even remove those wires. It seemed like the solder was a higher temp solder than I typically use. So, I used an ancient 100W gun style soldering iron to get the wires off. I was able to reattach them with the 100W iron, but one of the wires fell off. Also, since then my 100W iron has stopped working.

So, my main question is what tricks do you guys know to get this to work well? Do I just need more heat, or is there something else I can be doing? I do use flux.

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Old 08-10-20, 09:19 PM   #2
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Definitely time for a better soldering iron. Something like the TS-100 will handle 12AWG wires with ease. It uses integrated heater cartridges with better coupling than the older irons that merely have the tip in loose contact with the heater.

The very best like Metcal and JBC use induction heating, but so far they're a bit expensive for hobbyist use. Also, they're not that much better than integrated heater cartridge irons.

For really heavy duty work, a Weller soldering gun is still the best. Sadly, there's not much innovation in that field. Replacing the heavy 60Hz transformer with an inverter will make it a lot smaller and lighter, as well as allow for variable power and even closed loop control.
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Old 08-13-20, 03:46 PM   #3
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Thanks Mike. I ended up borrowing a soldering gun to finish up the work. That TS-100 looks very nice though! I am going to have to put that on my wishlist.
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Old 08-14-20, 06:19 PM   #4
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My Weller 140/100 came with a molded carrying case and extra tips. That makes it even handier. I think I bought it it at Lowes. It will handle 10 AWG with ease. My Weller 20 and 35 watt easily gets the most use day in and out.
I try to get the old solder out with woven copper wire or a solder sucker then scrape the connection and wire if necessary before re-soldering. A pencil eraser works too. New flux and solder seems to work better on larger wire.
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Old 09-04-20, 07:18 PM   #5
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Torch.
And there's a 10 charter limit.
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Old 09-15-20, 08:16 AM   #6
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Great! I am also facing soldering issue with a thin wire as well :P
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Old 09-15-20, 01:44 PM   #7
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For think wire any 10 watt soldering pen is fine.

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