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Vali 2 tube rolling

Discussion in 'Headphone Amps (full-size)' started by capt369, Jan 8, 2016.
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  1. Mr Trev
    All your guy's talk about burn-in and solder had me wondering if the 2 weren't connected too. Maybe after all the heat cycling from 100 or so hours of burn in does something to "restablize" the solder. Maybe it does the opposite? Not to mention the fact that these tube have just been sitting round for 60 odd years probably has some negative effect on the solder
    bcowen and Paladin79 like this.
  2. Paladin79
    I have talked about this. Rosin is used to clean the metal to which the solder adheres. When you subject the pins of the tube to hours of heat I believe it can change conductance over time but it is a slow process.

    I took two Foton tubes Bill sent me, removed and replaced the solder in both. I cooked one for 100 hours and measured it and listened to it during the process. After all was done, the emission was slightly less on the more used tube but otherwise no change. I used test equipment as well as friends who listened and compared the tubes. I increased the volume slightly on the 100 hour tube and we could not tell them apart. I could take the sound spectrum reading from one and lay it on top of the other. So by measurement and skilled people listening, no change other than 100 hours use on one tube lol.
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2019
    Old Deaf Donkey, Mr Trev and bcowen like this.
  3. bcowen
    The Foton experiment, part 1.5:

    Here's the original pin appearance (repeat):
    Foton Bad Solder.jpg

    Sucky original solder thoroughly sucked (out):
    Foton Sucked.jpg

    Resoldered using Wonder solder. I normally use Cardas, but I used this after @Paladin79 's (excellent) tip that a thinner gauge solder would make things easier, and the Wonder I have is half the diameter of the Cardas:
    Foton Resoldered.jpg

    Now comes the interesting part. True NOS (meaning truly unused) 6SN7's typically give raw meter readings on my Hickok between 700 and 800, translating to a GM of 2800 - 3200. Minimum raw reading is 400, or a GM of 1600. Prior to resoldering, this tube measured 275 / 400. Had it been anything but this Foton I would've donated it to the dead tube society. After removing the old solder and redoing it? 750 / 775, or GM's of 3000 / 3100. What was once dead is now alive...and even quite healthily alive. I think Tom has pointed out quite sufficiently that the solder in these old Fotons sucks. This is just objectively measurable proof that he's right. Not that he (or I, for that matter) had any doubt he was correct, but one of my bucket list items is to be able to prove him wrong at some point. Unfortunately this isn't it. :relaxed::relaxed::relaxed:
  4. Paladin79
    Great work on the photos and you are most kind Bill. I also looked at a 20-20k spectrum on such tubes before the solder and the results varied so much I knew something had to be changing so I attacked the only thing that I could vary. Re-flowing what was there seemed like a short term solution, it can help, but for how long? I will be interested in your listening results, I would suggest you listen to one you are burning in every six to eight hours and I have a feeling your results will be similar there as well. :smile_phones:

    I just feel bad for those sitting around waiting for magic to happen on the Fotons when it can be such a quick and more consistent fix by just replacing the solder.
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2019
    Old Deaf Donkey and bcowen like this.
  5. TK16
    Just refunded by Ebay for that dead ECC82 Heerlen 58. Ebay ruled in my favor. Made no mention about return shipping. Does this means I do not have to send it back?
    unrelated, just came across a proper testing ECC82, if anybody is interested. Buyers have to have 1 requirement, Cannot own a tube tester or access to 1. $300 with $400 economy shipping. :o2smile:
    Wes S, Old Deaf Donkey and bcowen like this.
  6. bcowen
    Glad to hear you got your money back! Takes a while with Ebay, but eventually is better than never in this case. When that moron shipped the Heathkit tester wrapped with tape, I got a (prepaid) mailing label sent to me by Ebay to ship it back. I can only hope that Ebay sent the idiot an invoice for the return shipping once they got billed by the USPS for it. That way he was out not only the complete value of the tester, but had to pay another $30 or $40 to Ebay on top of that to get the pile of parts back. I firmly believe that there should be a price attached to stupidity. :grimacing: If you don't get a prepaid label sent to you, then I wouldn't worry about sending it back. Perhaps Ebay gives the seller the option to pay for return shipping...or not. If they don't want to pay for it then it would be case closed. But I'm not sure of the details on how that works -- I've never sold anything on Ebay that anyone wanted to return.

    If I promise to sell all my testers (have 6 on-hand right now), can I buy it? Please please? :frowning:
    Old Deaf Donkey and TK16 like this.
  7. bcowen
    I'm getting better at my pin soldering thanks to practice and some very helpful tips from you. What helped as well was using paste flux that I have in a syringe. I can squirt the flux into the pin and then clean away any excess on the outside of the pin before I solder which helps keep the solder from wanting to stick to the exterior surface. Of course I couldn't do that without removing all the old solder first (and creating the internal void), and that sucker you linked a while back works fantastic for this purpose. Seeing I have 40+ Fotons to suck and solder now, dramatically reducing the filing and cleanup afterwards is huuuuuuge. :relaxed:
    Old Deaf Donkey, Paladin79 and TK16 like this.
  8. TK16
    Sucks about that tester, NOT intended for me to make you relive that horrible experience. Send me all your working and calibrated tester shipped on your dime and I`ll send you a nice looking display tube. Heard if this tube heats up again all the printing will melt off. So if your listening to cans with this tube, please do not connect the headphones to the amp.:ksc75smile:

    He never responded to the case I opened, doubt seller want to pay return shipping for a tube with 1 triode 3x the other (positive), however 1 triode is 3x weaker (negative). Going to leave negative feedback as soon as I get my money back. All he had to do was respond and paid for return shipping.
    Old Deaf Donkey and bcowen like this.
  9. bcowen
    I'd do the same. If the seller of the tester had just refunded my money, I wouldn't have posted a negative feedback. Probably wouldn't have posted any feedback at all. But all he wanted to do was blame it on the Post Office and repeatedly claim it wasn't his fault. And that continued even after I messaged him on two different occasions that who was at fault was entirely irrelevant -- as the seller, it was his responsibility to have the item delivered to me in the condition described in the listing. Anything short of that was his problem, not mine. I'm guessing he didn't insure it, so that little episode cost him in excess of $400. I doubt the USPS even considered paying the automatic $50 insurance that comes with Priority Mail once they looked at how it was (or should say wasn't) packaged.
    Old Deaf Donkey and TK16 like this.
  10. Paladin79
    I have liquid flux and I can have it flow down a needle to go inside the pins. One variable I did not think of on the tubes you sent, you measured each and they were well matched. I replaced the solder before I did anything and was more concerned about getting the 100 hours in on one of them than anything else, if you have the time, take two that match well, resolder them, then retest and see how they compare. Starting with just two tubes, I wanted to get them to be as close as possible to one another on the solder before I started. There is a measurable difference between them now but as best I recall they were still pretty close after I replaced the solder.
  11. bcowen
    Will do. I always re-test after I solder them anyway just to be sure I haven't done something or something broke loose inside during the process that would create a short.
    Paladin79 likes this.
  12. bcowen
    I've selected a pair of unplayed ribbed plate '52's that match up identically in GM to the pair of selected smooth plate '58's.

    This is the factory solder job. I'm still going to replace it, but notice the very obvious difference in workmanship quality between it and the '58:

    Foton 52.jpg
  13. Paladin79
    That does look better for sure.
    Old Deaf Donkey and bcowen like this.
  14. Robert Padgett
    Now, boys and girls, let's open our Soviet History books to the period at the end of Stalin. "Joseph Stalin, the second leader of the Soviet Union, died on 5 March 1953 at the Kuntsevo Dacha aged 74 after suffering a stroke."

    Hmmm. Stalin died in 1953. Foton Tubes from 1953 and before having better workmanship that those made 5 years (Or "5-year-plan") after the Iron Fist died in his glove.
    Maybe Soviet Workers no longer feared a Gulag visit for poor soldering skills? Maybe the quality of Vodka in Novosibirsk got better?

    When we play with Geopolitical actors, timing and context help us to understand. I would be interested in the views of Old Deaf Donkey...
    bcowen and Old Deaf Donkey like this.
  15. ScubaMan2017
    Christ! My dad had a pair of Radio-Shack (Realistic [tm]) cans like that. He would NOT let me touch them when I was 5-10 years old. My current cans would blow his mind.
    bcowen and Old Deaf Donkey like this.
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