Paste Solder?

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by MasonJar, Mar 24, 2003.

  1. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

  2. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way


    With about 40 years of electronics and soldering behind me, I would not recommend using this for anything electrical. To start with, you have very little control over the application of heat, secondly, it is really expensive, thirdly, I wouldn't put a match that close to anything I was doing and finally, I cannot see how it would turn out a professional looking joint. I would question its electrical properties over time as well.

    I guess that leaves little doubt about how I feel.:D

  3. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I just checked in the Micro Mark catalogue that I received a few days ago. They have this solder listed at $7.95 ea. They also say you can use a soldering gun or iron with it. I would not ever use any flame source to solder track. They also list "Stay Bright" silver bearing solder for $8.95. It includes "Stay Clean" flux. We use "Stay Bright" at work for refrigeration plumbing repairs, but we don't use "Stay Clean" flux. Stay clean is the consistency of water, and very hard to control. I've used "Nocorode" paste flux with "Stay Bright" and it worked fine. I'm not sure how 1/2 ounce compares with 7.1 grams, also the "Solder it" syringe is a paste mix of solder and flux whereas the the "Stay Bright" is pure solder. They also list "Tix" solder at $13.75 for a package of 20 3" long sticks. I don't know how that quantity compares. The Tix solder melts at 275*. You might find better prices for Stay Brite A8 at a welding supply store, but look for the smallest diameter wire you can get. Solder is available in diameters from small wire to 1/8 inch thick. The thick stuff is for soldering copper pipes.
  4. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    I would still be dubious of any solder for electrical use that melts at such a low temperature. I would think it wouldn't flow well and would make a poor connection.

    One thing to be aware of. DO NOT use acid-core solder or flux intended for plumbing on electrical connections. There are two types of flux for electrical soldering, rosin and water-based. We used the water-based flux since it made clean-up easier.

  5. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery


    Thanks for the input guys.

    I am coming to the conclusion that a slightly hotter iron (I currently have a 30W) would be better than solder that melts at a lower temp. However, I guess I am like many others who have a fear of the "unknown" and are looking for an easier way.

    A related question then -- I have heard about "silver" solder - does this have a lower (or different) melting point than the standard solder that is made of tin (at least I think that's what it is...)?

    Additional comments please!

  6. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    I use the Stay-brite, 11000 silver solder kit, for all the "ironwork" on ship models, and, for handrails, I'll apply the flux, and use a soldering pencil tinned with the silver solder. With a little flux on the joint, a touch of the tinned iron transfers just enough solder to the joint for a solid hold, without too much heat.
  7. lanejm

    lanejm New Member

    I have used a similar paste (from Radio Shack) with good results to solder track (Using a soldering iron). The use of paste means you will have very little excess solder on the joints and since it melts at a lower temperature, you are less likely to melt or damage any ties. I soldered the joints a year ago and have not had any conductivity issues. I would stay away from an open flame.
  8. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Stay Brite silver bearing solder will hold pipe together at pressures up to 600 psi. It will melt the first time at 430*, but I think the temp is higher for subsequent trys. It is probably twice as strong as 40/60 rosen core used in typical electrical work. I have come behind people who tried to repair a refrigeration leak with electrical solder, and the joints are literally blown apart! You want to use silver bearing solder as opposed to silver solder. Silver solder will be either 15% silver or 45% silver. Those high silver content solders melt at a temp of 1100* rather than 400*
  9. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    British modellers use "low melting point" solders for cast metal kits, because the cast metal melts at just a slightly higher temperature than solder.
    If you use a lower melting point solder, keep a separate soldering tip for it so that your regular solder doesn't contaminate it.
    When I took shop, we used a silver solder for the first joint and regular solder for the next one.
  10. Clerk

    Clerk Active Member

    All l can see with this is a cold solder joint
  11. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hi Andrew, For electrical work including soldering rail joints use a good grade of rosin core solder and use Kesters Rosin soldering paste flux. A can costs about 2 bucks and will last for years. A 30 watt iron should be more that sufficient for most anything in model railroading.

    TIX solder and flux while absolutly great for building things out of brass it is not suitable for electrical work...the flux that has to be used with it is acid based and will corrode electrical joints. Even when using TIX for other applications you have to neutralize it with baking soda and water.

    StayBrite is just overkill for model track or electrical work. Its good for building things out of brass and etc though.

    Make sure your iron is clean, the tip is screwed in tight and its properly "tinned".

    Soldering is a "learned art" just practice and it will get easier.

Share This Page