Soldering Course

Discussion in 'Courses & Classes' started by Toto, Nov 19, 2017.

  1. Toto

    Toto Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    This is something I have looked into before but the only thing I could come up with was " hobby holidays ". Now ...... Nothing wrong with that but there maybe a couple of issues. The first being I think they are way down south and second, I think minimum numbers would be required to even ask them if a bespoke course could be accommodated.

    So ...... As it looks like I have committed myself to constructing various brass kits and would like to do them justice ........ Does anyone else now of a course or ...... Someone who would be prepared to give a lesson or two. Preferably an experienced modeller ?

    Is there anyone else who would be interested in making up a class of say ( probably ) six or eight people. Keeping it in mind that we would have to pay for it and there could be accommodation etc involved.

    I'd be up for travelling for a weekend, ie , travel Friday night, course on Saturday and home Sunday. Could be at a date to suit.

    What's your thoughts

    Toto
     
  2. ianvolvo46

    ianvolvo46 Staff Member Moderator

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    I reckon Keith's your man Toto he's something of an expert and living in Chesterfield its pretty central plus I can recommend the Premier inn and bars in town. Also the preserved Butterly line is just a short walk through the woods from there so .....:scratchchin:
     
  3. Rob Pulham

    Rob Pulham Staff Member Administrator Feature Contributor

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    Possibly too far away in terms of time, and distance but I am doing a demo of brass kit building at the Stainmore Railway exhibition (held at Kirkby Stephen East Station in Cumbria) on the 23/24th of June next year. Where I plan to demo both using a soldering iron and a microflame to build kit's.

    What I have yet to decide is whether to do a wagon or a loco (I will probably do whichever I don't do this year the following year assuming that I get asked back).
     
  4. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    "Hobby Holidays" are based near Doncaster, which is about 30 or so miles North of me Toto. Whilst I count myself as an experienced solderer, I've not yet had sufficient experience to call myself an experienced modeller, as I've only built 3 metal kits, although I'm working on it with a few kits "in stock" for the winter months.
    Ian isn't quite correct on the location of The Midland Railway centre at Butterley, as it's 5 miles South of me, which makes it around 15 from Chesterfield, bit too far to walk I reckon.:giggle:

    Keith.
     
  5. jakesdad13

    jakesdad13 Staff Member Moderator

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    Hi Toto, do you have a model engineering club anywhere near to you? they may be able to give you some pointers. There are also the model railway clubs in and around Edinborough you might get some help there.
    I will send you some magazines I have. There is a step by step tutorial from Ian Rice on brass loco building, one of the best I have ever read.

    Cheer's, Pete.
     
  6. Toto

    Toto Staff Member Founder Administrator

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    Thanks for that Pete.

    Think I get back from Cyprus on the 23 rd June next year Rob otherwise distance would not bother me. Not just that, I'm thinking sooner rather than later to be honest.:avatar:

    I do have a club in Edinburgh that I have been threatening to visit. :avatar: that's a possibility.

    Cheers

    Toto
     
  7. Rob Pulham

    Rob Pulham Staff Member Administrator Feature Contributor

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    I did rather think you might be.
    To be honest I am not sure what you would learn that you haven't discovered already you just need practice.
    The key to successful soldering is:
    • Keep things clean - if in doubt give it a scrub/scrape with something mildly abrasive.[/*]
    • Plenty of heat so you can get in warm up the metal, and melt the solder quickly and then get out before other soldered joints start to come apart..[/*]
    • Use the least amount of solder possible - it's much easier to add more if needed than it is to remove excess[/*]
    • If you are soldering long lengths with the iron. Spot solder along the length first to hold things in place then join up by working either from the middle out or from both ends in. To prevent buckling by overheating the brass.[/*]
    • If you don't have a tap near by, keep a tub of cold water handy so that you can dunk the hot item in after each joint is soldered.[/*]
    • Get yourself some things to use as heat sinks - self locking tweezers are good but worst case wet tissue works either clip the tweezers to it or just cover the item that you don't want to fall off and the excess heat will be dispersed into the tweezers/tissue keeping the solder cool enough not to melt. [/*]
     
  8. Keith M

    Keith M Staff Member Moderator

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    I can't really add anything more to what Rob has said, experience is the key, and you only get that by doing the actual soldering process. I'd say the main thing is in assessing which soldering iron to use for which job, ie, don't use a 100 watt model for small jobs, conversely, using a 25 watt iron for larger area's will mean the solder won't melt and flow properly, as the surrounding material is soaking up most of the heat, meaning not enough left to melt the solder itself. It's a bit like.....little job, little hammer, big job, big hammer!:lol:

    If you've any brass fret offcuts, then just practice soldering with them first, until you feel more comfortable in handling the various sizes of iron and judging the heat requirements of different sized bits of scrap to solder together.
    Just a thought, are there any small 'craft workshops' (perhaps coppersmiths/tinsmiths etc) in your area Toto, as these are the folks who will be soldering metals on a daily basis? I reckon folks such as these would be happy to give you a few hours of instruction, especially if you 'crossed their palm with silver.'
    Keith.
     
  9. Rob Pulham

    Rob Pulham Staff Member Administrator Feature Contributor

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    Hi Keith,

    Where I use the iron, I only have the one that I use for higher melt soldering which is an 80 watt ERSA solder station. Sso I use this for all jobs large and small.


    I do find that even for small jobs (as long as the bit will fit) the 80 watt iron allows you to get the required heat into the job very quickly so you don't need to linger getting everything else hot. I would be concerned that even for small jobs a 25 watt iron would struggle in 7mm. When I first started in 7mm I had a 40 watt Maplins solder station and that struggled so when I died I went for the 80 watt unit and I have been using it now for 4 or 5 years without issue (I haven't even had to replace the tip which to be fair I did expect to at some point).


    I also have a cheapo (£9.99 from Maplins) iron that I use for whitemetal soldering. Apparently it's not good to use the same bit for lowmelt (70 degree) and normal soldering although if you change the bit there is no reason why you couldn't use the same iron.
     

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