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  • Topic: Beat the COVID Boredum

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    • April 6, 2020 9:49 AM EDT
      • Saint Johns, Florida
         
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      David Maynard said:

      Erick, yea the craft stores being closed is a problem, but I was able to source out the silver Sharpie, that I needed for my current project, at Dollar General. Dollar General also has craft sticks, some glues, and a very limited selection of craft paint.

       

      Since i already had a rather extensive collection of supplies (my mom calls it "junk"), I have been able to solder on.

       

      There is also Amazon, and Walmart.com for those "have to haves". Michael's even has an online order/curbside pick up option for stuff now. Since I don't know what stores are in your corner of the planet, you might have to look and see what other options are available to you.

      I think you meant to say SOLDIER on, since you did not mention an electrical project you are working on. Eh?

      ____________________________________

       

       

    • April 6, 2020 9:57 AM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Joe Zullo said:
      David Maynard said:

      Erick, yea the craft stores being closed is a problem, but I was able to source out the silver Sharpie, that I needed for my current project, at Dollar General. Dollar General also has craft sticks, some glues, and a very limited selection of craft paint.

       

      Since i already had a rather extensive collection of supplies (my mom calls it "junk"), I have been able to solder on.

       

      There is also Amazon, and Walmart.com for those "have to haves". Michael's even has an online order/curbside pick up option for stuff now. Since I don't know what stores are in your corner of the planet, you might have to look and see what other options are available to you.

      I think you meant to say SOLDIER on, since you did not mention an electrical project you are working on. Eh?

      Yea, thanks. Between my dyslexia, my inability to spell some words, and Microsoft's spell chequer, it can be a struggle to get my point across in a written format. So sometimes I make a mistake.

      Sister Mary Bruno didn't understand, she just called me lazy, and broke a few yardsticks across my hands.

      ____________________________________

      Shannon car Shops
      Home of the infamous leg lamp

      I.A.R.R.R. Member #12

      and King Butt Modeler

    • April 6, 2020 3:13 PM EDT
      • Saint Johns, Florida
         
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      David Maynard said:

      Sister Mary Bruno didn't understand, she just called me lazy, and broke a few yardsticks across my hands.

      ____________________________________

       

       

    • April 7, 2020 1:18 AM EDT
      • Kailua, HI
         
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      As it turns out, some LEDs came in the mail.  Maybe I will "solder on," as I would like to light some coaches!  My soldering skills are atrocious, so this would be a good project.  Still have to  ruminate on the landscape....As for local stores, it is a hard shut down.  Target is up and running, as is the hardware store, but that is it.   I would have to combine a supply run with a household maintenance run.  Then I'd have to do household maintenance.    We'll think of something!

       

      Eric

    • April 7, 2020 6:56 AM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Eric, my club's president's soldering skills are awful too. His mistakes are that he doesn't clean the oxidation off of items that are no longer nice and shiny. He doesn't tin the ends of his wires before soldering (put a thin layer of solder on the wire). And he doesn't use any flux. If the wire is tinned before soldering to the led lead, and a very small smear of flux is put on the LED lead, then when you touch the soldering iron to the wire/lead connection, it should nearly instantly bond the two.

      This post was edited by David Maynard at April 7, 2020 11:35 PM EDT
      ____________________________________

      Shannon car Shops
      Home of the infamous leg lamp

      I.A.R.R.R. Member #12

      and King Butt Modeler

    • April 11, 2020 6:55 PM EDT
      • Kailua, HI
         
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      David,

       

      Thanks.  Part of the issue is my soldering iron is, in fact, nearing end of service life.  I've been dithering on getting a new one, as I really don't use it that often.  To be fair, it is a reinforcing loop of stupid:  I am not good at it so I don't do it so I don't get a new one so I don't take on new jobs so I remain not good at it.... Time to break the loop.   A nice soldering iron is on the post-COVID buy run.

       

      As for flux.  Oh.  I assumed those coils that say you don't need it meant I didn't need it.   Assume...a word comprised of "ass" and "me."  Thanks for that tip, too!

       

      Aloha,

      Eric

    • April 11, 2020 7:12 PM EDT
      • Burke, Virginia
         
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      Eric Mueller said:

      David,

       

      Thanks.  Part of the issue is my soldering iron is, in fact, nearing end of service life.  I've been dithering on getting a new one, as I really don't use it that often.  To be fair, it is a reinforcing loop of stupid:  I am not good at it so I don't do it so I don't get a new one so I don't take on new jobs so I remain not good at it.... Time to break the loop.   A nice soldering iron is on the post-COVID buy run.

       

      As for flux.  Oh.  I assumed those coils that say you don't need it meant I didn't need it.   Assume...a word comprised of "ass" and "me."  Thanks for that tip, too!

       

      Aloha,

      Eric

      You're NOT alone in this!

      assume = to make an 'ass' out of 'u' and 'me'.

      ____________________________________

      Bruce

      http://jbrr.com/

       

    • April 11, 2020 7:18 PM EDT
      • Burke, Virginia
         
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      Joe Zullo said:
      David Maynard said:

      Sister Mary Bruno didn't understand, she just called me lazy, and broke a few yardsticks across my hands.

      I can relate to this... I attended a missionary school in 4th Grade in Quito, Ecuador ....I understand a ruler on the palm can be very painful.

      (On the OTHER hand, my best friend's father had been eaten by the headhunters - sheesh...maybe I need therapy? )

      ____________________________________

      Bruce

      http://jbrr.com/

       

    • April 11, 2020 7:20 PM EDT
      • Vail, Az
         
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      The flux keeps the metal clean.

      Solder runs towards the heat, hard to push, easier to draw towards,

      Fingers leave oils that stop solder from flowing...

      Heat is your friend, too little and you'll get frustrated.

      ____________________________________

      John

       

      The older I get, the less I know, please don't make me prove it.

       

       

    • April 11, 2020 7:55 PM EDT

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      This thread has been reported to the moderator by: ROOSTER......Is FLUX really necessary  ?

    • April 11, 2020 10:55 PM EDT
      • Vail, Az
         
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      Rooster ' said:

      This thread has been reported to the moderator by: ROOSTER......Is FLUX really necessary  ?

      Depends on your Flux Capacitor. 

      Yes

      ____________________________________

      John

       

      The older I get, the less I know, please don't make me prove it.

       

       

    • April 12, 2020 7:29 AM EDT
      • Not one of the WannaBe's,
         
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      John Caughey said:
      Rooster ' said:

      This thread has been reported to the moderator by: ROOSTER......Is FLUX really necessary  ?

      Depends on your Flux Capacitor. 

      Yes

       

      Since Rooster is always in Flux except when he's not Yes it is necessary

    • April 12, 2020 7:57 AM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Eric Mueller said:

      David,

       

      Thanks.  Part of the issue is my soldering iron is, in fact, nearing end of service life.  I've been dithering on getting a new one, as I really don't use it that often.  To be fair, it is a reinforcing loop of stupid:  I am not good at it so I don't do it so I don't get a new one so I don't take on new jobs so I remain not good at it.... Time to break the loop.   A nice soldering iron is on the post-COVID buy run.

       

      As for flux.  Oh.  I assumed those coils that say you don't need it meant I didn't need it.   Assume...a word comprised of "ass" and "me."  Thanks for that tip, too!

       

      Aloha,

      Eric

      Ah, a new soldering iron? Gee, the one that I am using, I got so many years ago that I don't even remember where and when I got it. Just as long as the tip is cleaned, tinned, and the thing still gets hot, it should work. As for flux, I use that to help the solder flow better. Yes, I have rosin core solder, and yes, in a perfect world, that will work fine without flux. You don't want to use an acid flux, but a tiny bit of flux will help, and it certainly will not hurt anything.

       

      But the bigger issue that I see is folks not tinning their wires. One member of the HO club was trying to solder a feeder wire to a rail, and he hadn't tinned the wire, and he wasn't using flux. He had to hold the iron into the rail for a long time, and he kept adding solder. The solder would ball up and drop off until enough rosin from the core of the solder got to the joint to clean the joint and join the wire and the rail. He melted several ties in the process.

      ____________________________________

      Shannon car Shops
      Home of the infamous leg lamp

      I.A.R.R.R. Member #12

      and King Butt Modeler

    • April 12, 2020 9:07 AM EDT
      • Candlewood Valley, Connecticut
         
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      I like soldering and I'm fairly good at it.

       

      You don't even want to see my pre 1970 Weller gun.  Plug broke so another cord was spliced on. Dropped it and broke the case; electrical tape wrap holds it together.  Probably related to the drop; it doesn't heat unless the two rods are held apart, so a scrap of wood is jammed in there.  I don't use it often, but last month while I was using it to make up heavy cables for a 2000 watt inverter we were putting in a work truck, I decided it's time to replace it!  Still haven't ordered it.

       

      And my 1980's radio shack pencils are getting worn out. Tips are galled in place so they can't be changed.

       

      But the resistance set I got used from Bruce still works fine. I just need more practice with it.

       

       

      This post was edited by Jon Radder at April 12, 2020 9:08 AM EDT
      ____________________________________

      www.cvsry.com www.cvsry.com

    • April 13, 2020 2:49 AM EDT
      • Kailua, HI
         
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      David,

       

      My iron has one has a serrated tip.  I took it in donation at the great price of "free." If I were to file it to shape, would the thing still safely work?  Or am I better off investing in a new one when I venture out to buy flux?

       

      Thanks,

       

      Eric

    • April 13, 2020 7:30 AM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      I have filed the tip on mine to reshape the tip, and mine still works. I bought some replacement tips for mine, but since I filed the tip of mine I see no need to replace the tip at this time. The tip on mine is bent, from being dropped years ago, but it still heats up just fine.

       

      As for purchasing another one, I have a brand new one still in the package, just in case mine does die. Its always good to have a backup, especially now.

       

      What I am saying is that sometimes people blame their tools, when the fact is they just need to learn how to do the job properly. I make no secret of the fact that I am cheep, so I don't have expensive tools. But sometimes I can do the job better with my cheep tools then some people can do with their expensive tools, The club president I spoke of, has an expensive soldering station, with a digital readout of the iron's temperature. During a work session, he gave up soldering in some slide switches. He said there was something wrong. Once I scraped the terminals clean, used a small bit of flux, and tinned the wires, I was able to solder the wires to the switches quickly and without issue.

      ____________________________________

      Shannon car Shops
      Home of the infamous leg lamp

      I.A.R.R.R. Member #12

      and King Butt Modeler

    • April 13, 2020 8:26 AM EDT
      • Lancaster, Ohio
         
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      OK, I don't understand this "COVID boredom". Anyone in this wide and varied hobby should never get bored. I've been retired for seven years and have yet to make a dent in getting projects done let alone have time to be bored. I can understand folks without hobbies getting bored during all of this but not hobbyists.

    • April 13, 2020 10:41 AM EDT
      • Southern Oregon
         
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      Eric Mueller said:

      David,

       

      My iron has one has a serrated tip.  I took it in donation at the great price of "free." If I were to file it to shape, would the thing still safely work?  Or am I better off investing in a new one when I venture out to buy flux?

       

      Thanks,

       

      Eric

       

       

       

       

      Yes you can file the tip smooth and flat, if there is any pitting or dark spots on the iron's tip those areas will not transfere heat properly causing a poor or impossible job.

      Understand that once you file the tinning off the tip (the shinny stuff) to bare metal it will not solder at all until re-tinned. 

      To tin the iron you need a good flux but should really use a product called Salammoniac,  Heat the iron and rub it on the Sal block along with solder and the tip will become 

      tinned instantly.

       

      Always keep the tip shinny with solder, wipe it off occasionally with a rag and don't let the iron overheat, that burns up the tip and then you need to file and re-tin again

      I always turn off the iron after each use then turn it back on and wait for heat up, sure it slows you down but not as much as filing and re-tinning or fighting a "dirty" iron does.

       

       

    • April 13, 2020 11:09 AM EDT
      • Candlewood Valley, Connecticut
         
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      Gary Buchanan, FOG said:

      OK, I don't understand this "COVID boredom". Anyone in this wide and varied hobby should never get bored. I've been retired for seven years and have yet to make a dent in getting projects done let alone have time to be bored. I can understand folks without hobbies getting bored during all of this but not hobbyists.

       

      Bored, well not really. A case of cabin fever?  For certain.  I have not ventured beyond the mailbox at the curb in 2 weeks, and no further than a grocery store in 4 weeks. An Alice Cooper song comes to mind...

      This post was edited by Jon Radder at April 13, 2020 11:24 AM EDT
      ____________________________________

      www.cvsry.com www.cvsry.com

    • April 13, 2020 6:52 PM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Gary Buchanan, FOG said:

      OK, I don't understand this "COVID boredom". Anyone in this wide and varied hobby should never get bored. I've been retired for seven years and have yet to make a dent in getting projects done let alone have time to be bored. I can understand folks without hobbies getting bored during all of this but not hobbyists.

      Bored, no not really. Tired of being cooped up in my house, yea.....

       

      Projects? Well, I am chipping away at them. I do some work on this one, then I do some work on that one, then I do some work on another one, then I ....

      I have also backed up all of the files on my computer, as well as opening it up and blowing all of the dust out of it.

      Then there is the window that I broke.

       

      ____________________________________

      Shannon car Shops
      Home of the infamous leg lamp

      I.A.R.R.R. Member #12

      and King Butt Modeler

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