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agressive soldering iron tip cleaner ?

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coppercone2:
So when I do repairs the PCB have often seen much better days and are highly oxidized, old and dirty. Sometimes cleaning and drying these PCB is more trouble then its worth before some diagnosis is made.

My pace solder extractor station has its tip get fouled very quickly. I was wondering about a high quality dip-tip cleaner that might be able to help me out.

Do these products work good? Brass sponge does not work that well on these solder extractors IMO.

I was wondering what a product suggestion might be that is more on the aggressive side. I would rather waste some tips then have to do more PCB trace repairs because of excess heating time. I feel like with some of the crap I vacuum up, the tip is fouled after one joint extraction.

I am waiting on some fiberglass brushes to maybe make this process little cleaner.

penfold:
Stuff like Stannol Tippy?
It certainly works for heavily fouled tips and gets all the crud off, bubbles up a little so may clean inside a solder sucker tip (not tested that though). I have some reservations about long-term frequent use, but TBH they're not based on an especially scientific comparison but I did notice tips at work that got cleaned with it routinely were more susceptible to build-up.

Just thinking aloud, but I wonder if some solder paste, with an aggressive flux, on a pipe cleaner would have a similar effect or a least a more 'directed' effect inside the extractor tip... perhaps.

richnormand:
The Weller Tip Activator 0051303199 does a nice job and does not seem to be harsh on the tip.
https://www.mouser.ca/ProductDetail/Weller/T0051303199?qs=wWC4CIiyLaPtzwQWGQPW%252Bw%3D%3D&mgh=1&gclid=CjwKCAiAg6yRBhBNEiwAeVyL0IuJLMA4yNjA-MhwsFxKbc0gvOycYuvorsNcun9vms2uf2fQvtbKmhoCaewQAvD_BwE

Works well on my Pace desoldering machine as it melts and is sucked in the tip.
It will not solve a clogged tip however.
I have used it on my old Ungar iron and it works quite well too but once the coating is removed or the tip is heavily pitted forget it.


coppercone2:
I turn off power and use a small reamer (the kind for cleaning oxygen gas welding torches) or a bit of solid steel wire (mig wire), and the brush they provide does a fine job with the barrel. What I want is a quick way to get clean solder on the bottom, so a efficent high thermal transfer vacuum seal is formed. brass is just not doing it. If I want to do every joint properly on these ancient oxidized PCB, it means I need to mess with it on every solder joint.


On clean newish PCB its alot better. I mean like 70's stuff.

jonpaul:
Hello again
photos would be helpful for the PCB and dirty tip.

We use the wet sponges with center hole, and Metcal irons, never had sipuch issues.

Maybe iron tip temp is not optimal?

I can highly reccomend Metcal irons.

Bon week-end


Jon

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