Solder wire is basically a hollow wire that is a mixture of soft metal alloys that is available in several sizes and flux core types. Solder is typically found in three categories: a mixture of lead and tin solder, a lead-free solder, or a silver alloy solder. Tin/lead solder is commonly used for joining electronic metals and is usually harder when having a higher tin concentration. The most commonly used solder for electronics are the 60/40 or the 63/47 blends, the first number is the weight of the tin, and the second number is the lead by weight. Lead free solders are now used for electronics and are mandatory when soldering copper plumbing pipes. The lead free solders for plumbing have a stronger acid based flux and should never be used for electronics.
Silver bearing solder is available in lead and lead-free formulas; however, the addition of silver is not always necessary or cost effective in projects that do not require silver solder. There are a few things to keep in mind when selecting a soldering wire. These things are: the flux type and amount, the alloy type, the thickness and total amount of the wire.
Flux melts prior to the tin/lead and starts to remove oxides from the surface, and it then covers the surface to keep oxygen away from the area. The flux also enables the solder material to flow easily and bond to the surface. When selecting a flux type it is important to know how aggressive it needs to be. The average R(plain rosin flux) and RMA solder fluxes are considered to have a low activity level, and RA fluxes have moderate activity levels, and water soluble fluxes are graded with higher activity levels.
Rosin cored flux is most commonly used in electronics, and acid cored flux is most often used in plumbing applications. It is normal to have fumes develop when the acid flux reacts to oxide on the surface; it is not wise to breathe these fumes in. Proper handling care and hand washing is vital to prevent lead from entering the skin. Soldering paste is a type of flux that is most commonly used on circuit boards. When working with electronics, the three common solder sizes to have on hand are: 0.062”, 0.032”, and 0.020”. Most projects will call for the 0.032” size and delicate jobs may require the finer sized 0.020” solder wire. Larger wires will require the thicker sized 0.062” solder to create stronger joints.
Each type of soldering wire calls for a different heat setting to properly melt and seal joints. For example, the 60/40 solder will need a temperature range of 361-374°F, and a 63/37 solder requires the temperature range around 361°F. Kester 37/63 is a preferred solder wire for many electronic applications. The 37/63 solder melts at lower temperature than 40/60. Relatively speaking, it is easy to flow and perfect for both manufacturing and repair applications. Kester manufactures some of the most renowned soldering products in the world. While Kester is known for making huge strides in environmental preservation, the brand is preferred for its dedication to quality. Hope you like our top review.