Author Topic: Different de-soldering braids....  (Read 1676 times)

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Offline Terry01

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Different de-soldering braids....
« on: July 27, 2018, 10:10:40 pm »
When I first started tinkering about with electronics stuff I bought the "value" packs of everything thinking they were all good buys. As you will all know.....I was wrong! Most of it was junk!
Anyways..... on to the braids.
I bought one of the 5 rolls of braid for £5 or whatever it was. Maybe even less expensive I can't remember. I watched a few YouTube videos on how to de-solder using the braid then tried some myself. What a let down! Along the way a bit I learned about flux and different melting temperatures and the importance of decent tools etc etc etc.
I got some decent braid and fluxes and started experimenting. Now I can de-solder with the decent braid and I can even get the cheap stuff to work all be it with loads more effort and flux!

I would say to any beginners looking to get some braid to just buy decent stuff to start with and save yourself the grief. The stuff I am calling decent is only 4 or 5 quid a roll so not really expensive unless your going to be doing loads of de-soldering, in which case you need a de-soldering station and that's a whole other post!

Chemtronics is the stuff I went with and will stick with now and just use the cheap stuff where I need to get some heavier solder joints cleaned out. I've found the cheap stuff is so so if you brush some flux over it before use but that can be a PITA compared to the Chemtronics stuff  that just works right off the reel.


I hope this saves someone the PITA I had finding this out!  8)
« Last Edit: July 28, 2018, 10:04:01 am by Terry01 »
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Offline Nusa

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2018, 10:39:58 pm »
The better stuff is impregnated with flux when it's packaged. The quality of said flux varies with brand. There are also variations on width and quality/fineness of the braided copper wire.

But as he said, even the cheap stuff usually works if you add some good flux yourself.
 

Offline DerekG

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2018, 01:09:36 am »
Don't forget to keep the solder braid away from the air when not in use.

The moisture oxidizes the copper & it then works a whole lot less effectively.

The fridge is a good spot to keep it :) Just get it out 20 minutes before you want to use it.
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Online amyk

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2018, 03:45:19 am »
The Goot branded stuff is also quite... goot. :D

Beware of fakes from China though.
 

Offline Ian.M

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2018, 07:04:24 am »
The difference between a good and a bad braid, is down to the surface cleanliness of the copper, how fine the weave is and how good the flux is and how much its impregnated with.  Even a good brand of braid can perform poorly if its oxidised during excessively long storage.

I would say the fridge is a *lousy* place to keep it due to the typically high humidity.  Its not like solder paste which has fine solder powder in wet flux so needs to be kept cold to slow down the reaction between the flux activators and the solder powder.

If you buy a bulk reel, respool as much as you need at the bench onto mini-spools, wearing gloves so you don't leave any fingerprints on the bulk reel, (fingerprints will cause surface corrosion and loss of performance) then reseal the bulk reel in a plastic bag and store in a cool *dry* place  (dry is more important than cool).

 

Online nctnico

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2018, 07:47:09 am »
I would say to any beginners looking to get some braid to just buy decent stuff to start with and save yourself the grief.
I agree. Don't bother with anything else than Soder-wick from Chemtronics (despite the spelling error  >:D )
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Offline bd139

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2018, 09:44:42 am »
Yep. Buy a roll of soder wick from chemtronics. Best stuff there is. RS sell it here in the UK.

I used cheaper stuff before years ago but it was nasty stuff.
 

Offline Terry01

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2018, 10:06:38 am »
I would say to any beginners looking to get some braid to just buy decent stuff to start with and save yourself the grief.
I agree. Don't bother with anything else than Soder-wick from Chemtronics (despite the spelling error  >:D )

Well spotted... showing my newbness again calling it by it's first name and not it's weekend name. On a Saturday too...DAMN! LOL  :P
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Offline DerekG

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2018, 07:19:18 pm »
I would say the fridge is a *lousy* place to keep it due to the typically high humidity.

Not so. The compressor works like an air conditioner, removing moisture from the air. Place a portable humidity sensor in your fridge & you will find it is generally less than 10%.

Have you ever noticed how the ice in your exposed ice trays in your freezer disappears over 6 months or so? This is because the humidity is so low, the frozen water actually evaporates over time :)
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Offline Ian.M

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2018, 08:15:06 pm »
That's your freezer as the cooling coils are very effective at freezing water vapour out of the air. 

However in a fridge without an ice compartment in the main fridge, there is usually condensation - door opens, air at maybe 40% RH enters, door closes, air is chilled by maybe 20 deg C, pushing the RH all the way up to 100% and keeping it there until about half the water has condensed out on the chiller coils and dripped out of the drain.  Then condensation on other surfaces e.g stuff stored can start to evaporate - but that doesn't happen fast below 5 deg C.

Therefore unless you keep a dedicated fridge for this sort of stuff, preferably with a chemical desiccant, and avoid opening it frequently, the humidity is likely to be excessive for long term storage of flux-coated bright copper.

I suppose you could make it work if you put all your sensitive stuff in a tupperware box with a good lid seal and a freshly baked out dessicant sachet, but IMHO its not worth the aggro.
 
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Offline Alex Eisenhut

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2018, 08:16:22 pm »
I would say the fridge is a *lousy* place to keep it due to the typically high humidity.

Not so. The compressor works like an air conditioner, removing moisture from the air. Place a portable humidity sensor in your fridge & you will find it is generally less than 10%.

Have you ever noticed how the ice in your exposed ice trays in your freezer disappears over 6 months or so? This is because the humidity is so low, the frozen water actually evaporates over time :)

LOL you've clearly never seen an old refrigerator from the days before auto-defrost!  :-DD The reason your freezer has no frost is because
there's a defrost cycle that blows warm air over the contents!

Here's what an old freezer looked like if you didn't manually defrost it:



You ever notice that they sell chest freezers that don't have auto-defrost? Because you can keep things frozen longer than way and they stay fresher, but they accumulate frost if you open them a lot...

And what do you think happens when your cold braid hits warm moist air? All that humidity you think you avoided will instantly form!
*Except AC/DC adapters on eBay. Avoid them all!
 
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Offline tooki

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #11 on: July 28, 2018, 08:22:31 pm »
Exactly!! Same reason you don’t keep cereal, pasta, etc in the fridge: it would go soggy!
 

Offline tooki

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #12 on: July 28, 2018, 08:25:42 pm »
When I first started tinkering about with electronics stuff I bought the "value" packs of everything thinking they were all good buys. As you will all know.....I was wrong! Most of it was junk!
Anyways..... on to the braids.
I bought one of the 5 rolls of braid for £5 or whatever it was. Maybe even less expensive I can't remember. I watched a few YouTube videos on how to de-solder using the braid then tried some myself. What a let down! Along the way a bit I learned about flux and different melting temperatures and the importance of decent tools etc etc etc.
I got some decent braid and fluxes and started experimenting. Now I can de-solder with the decent braid and I can even get the cheap stuff to work all be it with loads more effort and flux!

I would say to any beginners looking to get some braid to just buy decent stuff to start with and save yourself the grief. The stuff I am calling decent is only 4 or 5 quid a roll so not really expensive unless your going to be doing loads of de-soldering, in which case you need a de-soldering station and that's a whole other post!

Chemtronics is the stuff I went with and will stick with now and just use the cheap stuff where I need to get some heavier solder joints cleaned out. I've found the cheap stuff is so so if you brush some flux over it before use but that can be a PITA compared to the Chemtronics stuff  that just works right off the reel.


I hope this saves someone the PITA I had finding this out!  8)
A few years ago I tested a bunch of wicks. Chemtronics is okay. It’s not the best.  That honor goes to MG Chemicals, whose wick is finer than any other I’ve yet to encounter.

Here’s the link. Post includes macro pix.

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/beginners/desoldering-advice-please-removing-dip-ic_s-without-damage/msg833426/#msg833426
 

Offline T3sl4co1l

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #13 on: July 28, 2018, 08:26:54 pm »
Yep. Buy a roll of soder wick from chemtronics.

Seconded!  I have a roll of 10-25L, always good.

Another well known brand name (ah, but I forget which..) makes /terrible/ wick: the strands are coarse, and the flux, while present, is practically worse than nothing...

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Offline Terry01

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #14 on: July 28, 2018, 10:27:48 pm »
When I first started tinkering about with electronics stuff I bought the "value" packs of everything thinking they were all good buys. As you will all know.....I was wrong! Most of it was junk!
Anyways..... on to the braids.
I bought one of the 5 rolls of braid for £5 or whatever it was. Maybe even less expensive I can't remember. I watched a few YouTube videos on how to de-solder using the braid then tried some myself. What a let down! Along the way a bit I learned about flux and different melting temperatures and the importance of decent tools etc etc etc.
I got some decent braid and fluxes and started experimenting. Now I can de-solder with the decent braid and I can even get the cheap stuff to work all be it with loads more effort and flux!

I would say to any beginners looking to get some braid to just buy decent stuff to start with and save yourself the grief. The stuff I am calling decent is only 4 or 5 quid a roll so not really expensive unless your going to be doing loads of de-soldering, in which case you need a de-soldering station and that's a whole other post!

Chemtronics is the stuff I went with and will stick with now and just use the cheap stuff where I need to get some heavier solder joints cleaned out. I've found the cheap stuff is so so if you brush some flux over it before use but that can be a PITA compared to the Chemtronics stuff  that just works right off the reel.


I hope this saves someone the PITA I had finding this out!  8)
A few years ago I tested a bunch of wicks. Chemtronics is okay. It’s not the best.  That honor goes to MG Chemicals, whose wick is finer than any other I’ve yet to encounter.

Here’s the link. Post includes macro pix.

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/beginners/desoldering-advice-please-removing-dip-ic_s-without-damage/msg833426/#msg833426

I just ordered a 5 reel pack of the 2mm X 1.5M Chemtronics Chem-Wik braid last night but i'll order a roll of the MG chemicals stuff too so I can try it. I think what I have now will do me for a very long time yet as I have 3 or 4 reels of the dead cheap stuff too but i'm sure another reel won't go to waste and i'll get through it.
I like stripping components from old or broken consumer electronics so I do use quite a lot of braid sometimes. I mostly use a proper de-soldering station for this but sometimes I can only use braid and other times it just takes my fancy to use braid instead of the de-soldering gun. The braid is better for cleaning joints and connectors up and things like that.
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Offline David Hess

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #15 on: July 29, 2018, 06:52:03 pm »
I do not have any complaints about Chemtronics solder wick but I am currently using Pro Wick from Techspray (probably from Mouser) and it works fine also.  I would also trust MG Chemicals.

As the wick gets older, dipping it in flux before using helps.
 

Offline Terry01

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #16 on: July 29, 2018, 08:59:45 pm »
I do not have any complaints about Chemtronics solder wick but I am currently using Pro Wick from Techspray (probably from Mouser) and it works fine also.  I would also trust MG Chemicals.

As the wick gets older, dipping it in flux before using helps.

I use a little liquid flux on the cheap braid always and it does for taking the heaviest solder off the bigger joints. I just brush a fine coating over the braid before I put it to the joint. The finer joints I just use the decent braid, sometimes I even get in with the decent braid after the cheap stuff too finish up properly and leave the joint nice and clean.

I ordered a reel of the MG braid last night and ended up with a KG of the MG 63/37 solder too!  8) It looks like decent stuff but i'll report once i've given it a twirl!  :P

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Offline bd139

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #17 on: July 29, 2018, 10:24:14 pm »
Incidentally if you’re using a lot of braid I find a good investment is a couple of “Gu” cheesecakes from Tesco. The pots they come in are glass so you drop your burning hot snippings in there instead of on the bench. Plus you get cheesecakes :)

You could use a sheet of cardboard or a mat but they don’t taste as good.
 
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Offline tooki

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #18 on: July 29, 2018, 11:16:46 pm »
We don't have Tesco here, but stores here sell crème brûlées and stuff in very similar glass ramekins! That's a good idea! (I have a heatproof antistatic mat, but it didn't come with a crème brûlée!)
 

Offline Terry01

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #19 on: July 30, 2018, 07:34:03 am »
Incidentally if you’re using a lot of braid I find a good investment is a couple of “Gu” cheesecakes from Tesco. The pots they come in are glass so you drop your burning hot snippings in there instead of on the bench. Plus you get cheesecakes :)

You could use a sheet of cardboard or a mat but they don’t taste as good.

Nice one, I will give that a try for sure!
I've been using my soldering iron holder for the used braid, it holds plenty and the bottom falls out with a touch of the nice easy release catch so it's handy enough to empty over the bin when it's getting full. It's the Hakko fx-888 one. I use it for wire clippings, cut off component legs and everything else but the cheesecake solution sounds like a winner all round  :-+
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Offline calexanian

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Re: Different de-soldering braids....
« Reply #20 on: August 01, 2018, 08:46:27 pm »
+1 for solder wick. Its worth the cost. Just be advised though. The RA flux one works best, but you have to clean the residue after the repair or it will gunk up eventually. Any regular flux remover will do. I sometimes use cheap brake cleaner from the auto parts store. Its a fraction of the cost and evaporates quickly. Any white residue left over i just clean on with a scrub brush. Be sure to remove or mask of non solvent wash compatible parts!
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