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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What the hell is the magic secret? I've seen Sherman do it in about 9 seconds (albeit with a 100W gun), yet every time I have to desolder a ground (eg: on Drew's volume pot last night) with a 40W gun (which should be plenty), I end up having to hang out for 5 minutes holding the damn thing on the solder-blob.

What's the trick? Once the solder starts to melt it's fine, and from thereon-out it's easy to work with, but I've been through this a bunch of time on various guitars. Sometimes the pot will be so hot that I'm worried about the internals melting, yet the glob of doom is still staring at me, sold as a rock, laughing it's shiny metal ass off.
 

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Mr. Negative Pants, ,
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Sometimes the lower-wattage guns (or pencils) take a long time to get up to full heat.

I don't ever seem to have much of a problem getting the solder off pots... but i always have problems trying to get it to stick to them in the first place. :mad:
 

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I don't like it.
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How cheap is your iron? I've got a very nice 25w iron, spent a pretty penny on it versus even a 40w iron at Radio Shack, and it cuts right through the back of pots, has absolutely 0 issue with them. It doesn't take 100w to do it, it just takes a better iron. The iron I have, the tip has a hollow center, and the iron has some type of ceramic core which means that the tip doesn't lose it's heat. The cheaper irons have solid tips, so they'll lose their heat as soon as you touch the back of the pot, which is why my iron works so well with less wattage.
 

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NICE BLACKMACHINE YO
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Sometimes the lower-wattage guns (or pencils) take a long time to get up to full heat.

I don't ever seem to have much of a problem getting the solder off pots... but i always have problems trying to get it to stick to them in the first place. :mad:
That's probably the answer for you, Chris. I keep a high wattage gun purely for blasting pots quickly.

As for getting them to stick - I'm sure you do this already, but for other people, anyway - I scratch the back of my pots with sandpaper. Sometimes it'll strip down to the copper casing, but the aim is to get rid of any treating/polish/chemicals/galvanising. Always works flawlessly for me :yesway:
 

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I don't like it.
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Sometimes the lower-wattage guns (or pencils) take a long time to get up to full heat.

I don't ever seem to have much of a problem getting the solder off pots... but i always have problems trying to get it to stick to them in the first place. :mad:
Hit them with 80 grit sandpaper or run them on a belt sander before you solder, you'll have no issue. It's also a great way to get solder off a used pot and start over.

edit: Damn you Stitch!
 

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Dream Crusher
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Those high-wattage guns are the key. My dad has a 100W gun and it works like a charm.
 

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It's not lupus.
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How cheap is your iron? I've got a very nice 25w iron, spent a pretty penny on it versus even a 40w iron at Radio Shack, and it cuts right through the back of pots, has absolutely 0 issue with them. It doesn't take 100w to do it, it just takes a better iron. The iron I have, the tip has a hollow center, and the iron has some type of ceramic core which means that the tip doesn't lose it's heat. The cheaper irons have solid tips, so they'll lose their heat as soon as you touch the back of the pot, which is why my iron works so well with less wattage.
This was one of the biggest differences I noticed between working using my dad's soldering iron and mine. It was a 35w iron and the solder was melting pretty much instantly, where as mine was taking closer to 10 seconds for each joint.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
How cheap is your iron? I've got a very nice 25w iron, spent a pretty penny on it versus even a 40w iron at Radio Shack, and it cuts right through the back of pots, has absolutely 0 issue with them. It doesn't take 100w to do it, it just takes a better iron. The iron I have, the tip has a hollow center, and the iron has some type of ceramic core which means that the tip doesn't lose it's heat. The cheaper irons have solid tips, so they'll lose their heat as soon as you touch the back of the pot, which is why my iron works so well with less wattage.
Last night was w/Drew's 40W Weller.
 

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Hates Richie Kotzen
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Last night was w/Drew's 40W Weller.
I used to have a weller, but I finally just bit the bullet and bought a hakko 936 for guitar work (~$80 if I remember correctly).

It seemed exorbitant to me at first, but good tools last a lifetime, and I love soldering stuff in my guitars.
 

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I don't like it.
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Last night was w/Drew's 40W Weller.
My 100w Weller is definitely still of the cheap variety. I paid around the same for my 100w Weller as I did my 25w Hakko Dash, if not more for the Dash, I don't remember all too well.

If you can't fully disassemble your iron and replace individual components, you didn't get a good enough iron :agreed:
 

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Hates Richie Kotzen
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Amazon.com: Hakko Soldering Station, 936, ESD, With 907 ESD Iron: Home Improvement: Reviews, Prices & more

Theres the link, wellers are good too, but the hobbyists who buy them frequently fuck up the tip and then blame it on the iron without realizing the tip needs replacement. I presuming drew has this Amazon.com: Weller WLC100 Soldering Station for Hobbyist and Do-It-Yourselfer: Home Improvement (thats the most common non shitty hobbyist iron), which is the same I owned previous to the 936. 936 is way better overall though.
 

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Mr. Negative Pants, ,
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Yeah, i suspect i just need to invest in a better gun. My bassist solders stuff for a living, and he swears by Hakko stuff.
 

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NSLALP
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It works with my 40 or 50W Weller. I just crank it to 850, and try to get some good tip contact. :shrug:

Then again, mine's vintage. That's probably the reason it works better.

$300 and it's yours. :yesway:
 

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I like turtles!
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Once the solder starts to melt it's fine
I dunno if you do this already or not, but melt some solder onto the tip of the iron first. This isn't for the join itself but heat transfers better through liquid solder than it does solid, so if you tin the tip of the iron first then put it to the join, everything heats up quicker and easier, like you noticed.
 
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