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my CMOY :) (getting there) - Page 2

post #16 of 60
I hope you've got 6 sets of soldering tips too Ctn . When I first started my cmoy, my tips turned into silver nuggets real quick. Oh, and stay away from tip "cleaner". It'll clean your tip into a crappy knob that doesn't take to the solder, well it did for me anyway. Have fun.
post #17 of 60
Thread Starter 
hehe i hope not the tips are like 1/3 the cost of the iron

Im not sure about the tinner stuffing up the tip but so far its working still
post #18 of 60
Originally posted by Ctn
hehe i hope not the tips are like 1/3 the cost of the iron
yeah, same thing with mine. besides, I would have to order them which adds shipping costs as big as a new iron and a minimum order of three times a new iron...
post #19 of 60
Thread Starter 
Ouch pity you dont have something like Jayar where you are.

Dont RS or some store like that sell them?
post #20 of 60
no RS here. there is a electronics store in Utrecht (30 minutes from here) but they only seem to carry $40+ soldering stations...a bit overkill for me.
post #21 of 60
Bummer. I think I can manage to preserve the tip by drowning it in solder, and making sure its not neglected for more than a couple of minutes. Hope that helps.
post #22 of 60
Thread Starter 
that bites...soldering stations costs alot for what they do.

I wonder if RS ships internationally? Might be a good idea to get a cheap iron with alot of tips
post #23 of 60

Solder tip should be cleaned with wet clothes. This will get rid of burnt flux and dirt. (Solder do not burn in normal atomsphere.)

Tip should be cleaned before, after and during the soldering. Some flux are strong acid and eat up soldering tips. Also, flux and dirt accumulation can prevent solder from coating the tip. This prevents additional solder from sticking to the tip making soldering extremely hard. Last but not the least, contaminants in your soldering can cause electrical problems. I keep my tip shiny clean at ALL TIME.

I have used the same tip for nearly 6 years now. Zoboomofo must be mistreating his iron or something because my iron tip is running prestine condition after many many projects. zoboomofo must be using very acidic solder with iron tip or something.

Soldering stations are really cool. But they tend to be costly. I would like to get one but for now I am sticking with my soldering pen. Note when you choose soldering irons you need to becareful about following things.

1. Ceramic heater (Heats up really quick and stay hot while cooking solder.)

2. Material of Tip (Do not pick ones are weak to corrosion like Fe (Iron))

Wattage should be around 15~30W. Note more wattage does NOT mean better. In fact, my soldering pen has 15W rating but can handle power usually expected of 30W pens due to ceramic heater.

Solder should be chosen carefully as well. They should be laced with flux to make your like easier. (Multi-core etc) However, flux generally are very corrosive chemicals that cleans the surface before solder can settle on it. You can choose many different type of flux. Do not pick solder for extreme conditions, these have very corrosive chemicals. You do not need it. I stick with regular kinds or water soluable kinds. Easy to deal with and does not have very nasty stuff.

Whatever the case, always keep tip clean. Irons will be happy and happy irons make you happy too.

post #24 of 60
Thread Starter 
Hi Tomo,

When do solder burn on t he iron? When my iron is too hot it usually burns.

Is it ok to clean with multicore tinner/cleaner?
post #25 of 60
Thread Starter 
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO !!!! my cmoy dont fit in my case

Can anyone recommend a case that is about 3.5cm high?
The case I got is 3cm high and the ME caps are too big
post #26 of 60
What kind of monster caps did you buy, Ctn, that they're over 3 cm high?? You will have to either replace them with smaller caps -- which is fine, since you can't possibly need caps that big for a cmoy pocket amp -- or if you haven't yet clipped the long legs off, desolder your caps and solder them in sideways or at an angle.

By the way, you posted earlier about desoldering braid: if I'm understanding the way you're using it from your description, there's no wonder you're having trouble. The proper way to use it is to lay the braid over the solder joint, then apply the iron to the braid. This heats up the braid, and then the solder underneath. When the solder melts, it wicks up into the desoldering braid. Then you lift the braid and the iron at once, and lay some clean braid over the joint and repeat until all the solder is removed.
post #27 of 60
Thread Starter 
Hi Tangent,

I tried that too with the desodering braid but only a bit came off.
I left the iron there for a bit longer hoping to get more off and the trace/track came along with the solder

I got some big ass non-polar Solen 0.1uF 630v MKP-FC caps which lie on its side which is kewl. On the other hand the similar sized polar 470uF 25v ME caps used for the power supply are the same size but stand upright and I cut the legs off too

I spend so much time on this cmoy, like 3 hours every weekend to get this far. I was told that the bigger the caps are the better it will be so I went for the biggest size I thought it would fit and would of I think if it werent for my bad soldering
The side where I did all the soldering. Some of the legs has more solder than it should hehe but that's as good as it gets. All together the cap stands about 3cms high but since the case is 3 cms high also minus the thickness of the base and top Im about 2mm short I guess one of the reasons Im out of space is um I stuck a resistor under the cap to save space. *DOH*

So here I am needing a new case
post #28 of 60

On the desoldering braid thing, yes you have to be careful not to scorch the fiberglass underneath the trace, or it can lift. Another trick for keeping traces intact is to make sure the solder is fully heated before applying force to the joint. If the solder is only warm but not freely flowing, the trace can give way before the solder will. This can happen when you're re-heating solder joints to push components down closer to the board: don't push on the component until the solder is flowing freely.

Also on the braid, yes, you will only pick up a portion of the joint's solder with each wicking. You may need to use up to an inch of braid to completely desolder a joint, if you did a sloppy job of soldering.

On the caps issue: yes, bigger is better, but only in the same way that it's better to walk into a store with a million dollars than to walk in with only $10, when you intend to buy $20 worth of stuff. A little reserve on the voltage is okay, but there's no need to go overboard. If anything, you might want to increase the capacitance of the power caps (not the signal caps, though!) but again a voltage reserve is only a minor nicety. I think cmoy's article overspecs the caps already: it calls for 100V caps in places, yet there's no way you'll even approach that voltage with a pocket amp.

What can you do? You can try desoldering the caps and then soldering new legs on, bending them over and soldering the new legs into the holes. This is tricky because you often end up heating the legs enough to melt the leg-to-leg joint as well. It may be better to solder the new legs in separately, then solder the caps to the legs.

Also, if you have more than 2 millimeters of stuff sticking out of the bottom of the board, just use your nippers to trim things down. You want that surface to be relatively smooth anyway, especially if you're using a metal case, because sharp stuff on the bottom of the board can pierce the insulation you have on the bottom of the case. See this thread on HeadWize for pics of what your board underside should look like.
post #29 of 60
Thread Starter 
Hi Tangent,

The underside looks like mine hehehe

I found a box that fits it but its HUGE sigh

But wow that's a very neat job in placing the components !!!

That's some thick wire. Is it ok if I used some really really thin solid wire?

Damn your second cmoy looks sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet !!
post #30 of 60
But wow that's a very neat job in placing the components !!!
Thanks. Now you know how to do it for your next cmoy.

That's some thick wire. Is it ok if I used some really really thin solid wire?
It's only 22ga, but yes, you can probably go quite a bit thinner. You might even be able to get away with 30ga wire-wrap wire, but I wouldn't want to try to work with it. I actually wanted to use 24ga wire, but the local Radio Shack didn't have any that thin.

As for stranded vs solid, I prefer stranded simply because it's easier to work with: you can nick the wire while stripping it and still have strands left (nick solid wire and you weaken the whole wire), it tins easier, and of course it's more flexible.
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