How To Solder And Desolder
Learn how to solder and desolder with ease.
Soldering is when you join two wires with molten metal. Desoldering is when you use the same heat principle to remove to wires. Both are relatively easy to do. You need a soldering iron, solder, the wires you are going to join; and for desoldering, you need a desoldering pump.
Unless you are joining heavy wires, a small 25 to 50 watt soldering iron should be plenty. Make sure you keep the tip of it maintained, to it transfers heat. You do this by filing the tip. This will also help prevent pitting and tarnishing.
Solder can be purchases and almost any hardware store. The strongest solder is a mixture of 60 percent tin and 40 percent lead. This mix has a fairly low melting point, and it is easy to use. Once you have these tools, you are ready to begin. Follow steps for either soldering or desoldering.
1. How to solder wires together
To start, make sure your wires have been stripped, and clean them with sandpaper. When they are clean, twist the two wires you want connected together. Then, take the tip of the wire, and hold it to the tip of the soldering iron. Hold the wire there with one hand. Take your other hand, and press the solder to the wire. Melt enough solder to coat the strands evenly. Remove the solder, and remove the wire from the soldering iron. Let the wire cool, and snip off any extra strands of the wire. Your wire should be solidly one, instead of two now.
2. How to desolder wire
Take the soldering iron in one hand, and the desoldering pump in the other. Press the soldering iron against the joint where the wires were joined with solder. The iron will heat the area, and melt the old solder. Make sure you do not keep the heat on the joint too long, it will heat the whole area. As you heat the joint, press the plunger of the desoldering pump to the joint to suck up the molten solder. Do this until the wires are clean. Once you are done, make sure you clean the desoldering pump out.