American Beauty -Soldering Tip Care - Information You Should Know

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Proper care and maintenance of your soldering iron tip involves tinning, wiping (and wetting) and also periodic cleaning of the tips shank. These actions are very important and quite simple to perform, but are often neglected. When performed properly they will not only ensure the longest possible working life for your soldering iron tips, but they will also have positive effects on the overall performance of your soldering iron.

Tinning: Tinning may not be necessary if the tip you are using is new and arrives pre-tinned from the manufacturer, or has been used previously and been properly maintained. When a tip does need to be tinned (or re-tinned) it must be clean and free of any surface oxidation before it will accept any solder. Once the tip is properly tinned, care should be taken to prevent tip dewetting by occasionally cleaning and adding small amounts of fresh solder, especially if the tip is being subjected to long periods of inactivity or idling.

If the tip to be tinned is un-plated copper it should be cleaned and dressed with a single cut, flat file. After filing the tip it should be heated in the iron. When the tip reaches the lowest temperature required to melt solder, a rosin core solder should be fed onto the tip. Do not allow the iron temperature to rise too high before applying the solder, because excess heat will cause the tip surface to re-oxidize and no longer accept the solder...

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