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Discussion Starter #1
I have done some relocation of my turn signal, coil, ignition switch, tail light, and mini apes requiring adding on to the control wiring. I used acid core solder. And, now I've read that ot isn't the best to use on electrical wires. I haven't had any problems with breakage except one front turn signal wire broke at the joint. But that was because everytime the bike was parked the forks fell to that side and then iI would straighten it out to ride. Over a period of time it just broke. The other wires are straight and taped or zip tied to the frame.
 

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Mississippi Cajun
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Acid core solder on electrical components is a no-no. The acid will react with the metals and set up its own private little electrical circuits.. especially bad in communications and sound equipment. You can probably get away with it on wiring, but it will eventually work to weaken copper wiring. Resin core solder is the approved stuff to use.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Should I redo all my soldering and do it with resin core?
 

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Gypsy on Parade
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Well, KD is the expert on amateur radio, so what he says probably makes sense. I was always taught the same thing, acid core for mechanical joints, rosin core for electrical. You don't have to redo your soldered connections, but now you're always gonna wonder about them...:)
 

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Yep, acid core is for plumbing, rosin core for electrical stuff.
 

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The acid and rosin cores are flux to aid in the solder bonding. They clean the surface of the items being soldered and help the solder flow. Rosin is a what should be used for electrical/electronic work.

The flux , to the best of my knowledge does not mix with the metals, but leaves a residue on the surface. The acid is a corrosive. Just clean the flux off - it will be fine in this csse.
 

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Retired citizen
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For wiring I tin with flux then solder with solid core solder wire.
 

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Discussion Starter #9

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Discussion Starter #11
Well, all the solder joints I've made to the turn signals and handlebar control don't concern me as much as the 3 primary wires going to the coil and the starter switch wire that I had to add onto. If the signals or brake quit working I know where to look. But if the later brake, then I'll have problems. But, like I said, the joints are at a stationary point and taped well and zip tied to the frame where they can't move. The tirn signals are free to move around from the signal to the frame anyway and that's where the wire broke. But, I will redo them all .. someday. I ordered some rosin core solder.
 

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You need to cut out the acid core joints and re-solder with rosin core. You may have to splice in some additional wire, if cutting out the acid makes them too short. The acid core solder will corrode the wires into in a short time!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
:mad
 

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For anyone looking up soldering information in the future, this is the best stuff to use on wiring jobs.

Kester - #44 Rosin Core - 63% Tin/37% Lead Solder
Kester PN# 24-6337-0061

Kester Solder 24-6337-0061: Kester Wire Solder, Sn63/Pb37 Alloy, .062" Dia., #44 Rosin Flux, #66 Core Size, 1-lb. Roll


Other commonly used solder is 60/40, but the 63/37 solidifies much quicker and greatly reduces the chances of a poor solder joint due to parts moving while the solder solidifies.

I believe the .062" is the largest size they make (or atleast sell on that particular website). Probably too big to use on circuit boards. I use .031" for that, but the .062" would be fine for working with wires and automotive type applications.
 

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Discussion Starter #15

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I'm not familiar with that particular iron. I imagine it would suit your purpose of soldering wires. But I would save up for something better if you think you anticipate the need for doing more soldering jobs in the future.

Solder iron quality is important when you start soldering larger components. You need a quality iron with a ceramic element preferably. Total power or wattage of the iron is less important than its thermal recovery ability. Thermal recovery is the ability of the iron to “recover” the temp you set it at after you touch it to what you are trying to solder. Ceramic elements are better at this, they are lower wattage but heat much faster. A cheap soldering iron will have a wire coil element. When you try to solder with one it will loose heat and the tip temperature will drop very low, and they are slow to recover from that temp drop. This causes you to turn up the heat to compensate. To much heat is the enemy. It is also important to use the right size tip. When soldering large components, a bigger tip holds heat better and will not drop as many degrees when using it.

A quality iron heats up quickly and lets you choose a specific temp and holds that temp well. Quality irons have temp sensors in them that allow you to select a temp using the controls and then it actively works to hold that temp. If the temperature of the tip drops too much (more than 6 degrees or so for consumer grade and 2 degrees for military aviation grade irons) the iron will kick on max power to quickly bring the temp back to where you want it, then it will lower power to hold the temp. A good one will hold a certain temperature to within a few degrees. Coil element type irons can not do that, they do not have a sensor to tell them when the temp has dropped, they just put out a constant amount of power to the element.

This is a good general purpose soldering iron:
https://www.google.com/search?aq=f&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=team+checkpoint+solder+station&qscrl=1#q=team+checkpoint+soldering+station&hl=en&sa=X&qscrl=1&prmd=ivnsfd&source=univ&tbs=shop:1&tbo=u&ei=paB-TZ-XKauI0QH-vND3CA&ved=0CDkQrQQ&biw=1143&bih=642&fp=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_cp.r_qf.,cf.osb&cad=b

TrakPower TK-950 it costs about $70 and has a high power ceramic heating element and 2 different tips. It is a re-branded Hakko 936 but cheaper by $10. Also, the decorative vinyl skin still lets you see the temperature markings on the dial. The Hakko has only one tip and the pretty skin covers up the temp markings, but you could use a marker to write on it. They both have the big higher power iron handle, which helps it hold heat when soldering large wires without needing higher temps.
 

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I don't think you need to cut them out and redo them. They are not in a location they can bridge a ciucuit. If you feel like you have to do anything, clean the joints and neutralize with baking soda, but it is a really not necessary.

Just make sure you have solid joints - not "cold joints". Cold joints will breake with vibration.
 

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The problem with acid core on stranded wire is that it wicks up into the strands and from there causes corrosion. This may eventually weaken the wire and cause it to break. If it is not insulated well, excessive corrosion may also affect other connections nearby and allow electrolisis to occur. Its kind of like a battery terminal corroding up.
 

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The wicking, is why I suggested cutting out the joints. Wires corroded into, hidden inside insulation, is a bitch to find! Better safe than sorry.

Most of us, who do electrical or electronic work, use a much smaller iron. Somewhere in the 25-50 watt range, and usually temperature controlled.
 

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Yup, I've had to deal with wiring that had green copper corrosion all up in the insulation.... when that happens it is a total rewire job.

I linked a good soldering iron in my post above. Another would be a Weller WES51 (analog) for slightly more than the TK950/H936, or a WES51D (digital) which is what I use.
 
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