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Premium Grade solder? - Page 2

post #16 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post
The point of solder is to make a strong physical joint. 60/40 does that, flows better than any of the "specialty" solders, and you never get cold joints, tin whiskers, or other problems. I've found silver based solders not to flow or stick particularly well, so I've gone back to 60/40. Usually Kester, but Radio Shack is very good, as well.
Interesting, 60/40 has given me grief in the past, hence the 63/37. Lead and tin for me though, don't use the fancy stuff.
Here is the article:
"In metallurgy, there is a special kind of alloy referred to as "eutectic". Eutectic alloys exhibit no plastic range upon melting, and the melting point is lower than that of any other alloy composed of the same constituents in different proportions. Stated otherwise, a eutectic alloy has coinciding liquidus and solidus temperatures, exhibiting a true melting point as is seen with pure metals, contrasted with the melting range seen with non-eutectic alloys. This allows quicker wetting as the solder heats up, and quicker setup as the solder cools. A non-eutectic alloy must remain still as the temperature drops through the liquidus and solidus temperatures, as any differential movement during the plastic phase may result in cracks, giving an unreliable joint. 63% tin / 37% lead (Sn63Pb37) is the eutectic alloy of tin and lead and has a melting point of 183°C (361°F), with no melting range as with Sn60Pb40. Sn63Pb37 was historically used extensively in printed circuit board (PCB) assembly applications, and we think it is easier to use in hand soldering applications as well."

Hope this is helpful.
post #17 of 64
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post
The point of solder is to make a strong physical joint. 60/40 does that, flows better than any of the "specialty" solders, and you never get cold joints, tin whiskers, or other problems. I've found silver based solders not to flow or stick particularly well, so I've gone back to 60/40. Usually Kester, but Radio Shack is very good, as well.
I see. So your suggesting just using generic 60/40?
I have heard varying opinions on silver based solders both good and bad.

I am hoping to get a small roll of each of the premium brands from my associate so I can do some tests and make up my mind which works the best for me. After my tests I can order a larger quantity.
I appreciate your suggestions and information.
post #18 of 64
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Billyk View Post
Interesting, 60/40 has given me grief in the past, hence the 63/37. Lead and tin for me though, don't use the fancy stuff.
So your also suggesting just using a more generic type of solder and not to bother with the premium grades, such as the Cardas Quad Eutectic?

Thx for your info and suggestions.
post #19 of 64
Since I have about 5 pounds of the stuff I don't see the need to buy more. My point is the eutectic alloy being the difference for me. A good high quality brand like Kester or Alpha is a good choice, so too, I think the Cardas Quad and other high end brands are good; I just cannot justify the expense for my use.

I think if I was going to do some high end point to point work on a SE 300B type thingus I would invest in a few feet though!
post #20 of 64
What matters is if you can get a good joint with it and if it will remain stable over time.

Kester, Qualitek, and Alpha all have good eutetic products.

It also cannot be stated enough that you should use a good flux. I continue to recommend Kester's 186 RMA flux pen for pc board work and smaller-guage cables. For large diameter cables that are hard to fully wet with what amounts to a felt-tip pen, use a good paste flux.

Yes, even if you have rosin-core solder.
post #21 of 64
Kester, that's the brand I use from the surplus store. I knew if I saw it I'd recognize it!

I can't stand solder with high tin content. For example, that ROHS lead free solder.
post #22 of 64
Quote:
It also cannot be stated enough that you should use a good flux. I continue to recommend Kester's 186 RMA flux pen for pc board work and smaller-guage cables. For large diameter cables that are hard to fully wet with what amounts to a felt-tip pen, use a good paste flux.
+++

I learned to solder 30+ years ago and the most valuable thing I learned was the use of flux! I use a bottle like the one Tangent has for sale on his site. It is the ONLY way to solder SMD.
post #23 of 64
I'm a big fan of standard 62/36/2 silver solder for general purpose work. I also have some Cardas Quad, which flows very nicely.
post #24 of 64
Thread Starter 
Yes, I have some flux paste on the way also and I will be buying some liquid flux also...

I appreciate the suggestions.
post #25 of 64
Thread Starter 
I just did some soldering with the quad eucetic (bad spelling) That stuff is great and melts on run so easily. I will be using that from now on.
post #26 of 64
Any eutectic solder = good solder. Which is why 60/40 sucks.
post #27 of 64
I'm a fan of Cardas Quadeutectic, the stuff melts like butter. But I agree with others, anything but 60/40 should be just fine.
post #28 of 64
well thats not true. because there are lead free solders that are just... well brittle, hard to use, dull looking, etc... Best bet is to use any eutectic form of solder. Eutectic mixtures melt below the melting point of either metal, and as it cools, it goes directly from liquid to solid state (of the mixture). Other materials that are not at the eutectic mixtures, go from liquid to solid BUT form solid particles of each metal. For example, a standard 60/40 solder will melt and cool (at higher temps than eutectic ofcourse) but as it cools, rather than cooling into the alloy, some become bits and pieces of lead, others tin etc... so its like you have crumbs of metal in an otherwise lovely free flowing pool of solder. This can lead to cold solder joints, and **possibly** some form of noise and parasitic capacitance.
post #29 of 64
Off topic a little.

Does anyone know where to get empty solder spools? Like the smaller ones used for 1-1.5 ounce spools? I buy it buy the pound and need 3 of them for some solder I've got so I don't have to keep a 1 pound spool in my hand while working.
post #30 of 64
Has anyone used Mundorf Supreme solder? It looks interesting and is sort of cheap considering the contents.
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