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Author Topic: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors  (Read 1003 times)

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Offline Richard M

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Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« on: August 18, 2018, 20:16:27 PM »
I need a soldering iron with more oomph than my current one, if I'm to solder EC5 connectors satisfactorily. I imagine that 80w will be sufficient, but I'm tempted get a 100w one. Any thoughts?

Thanks.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2018, 20:29:52 PM by Richard M »
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Offline THE BLACKBIRD

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2018, 20:56:27 PM »
Get the 100 it's better to have a lot of heat for a short time than a lower heat a longer time
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Offline Dave Lowe

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2018, 21:44:16 PM »
Go for the 100 you know it makes sense  :af ........
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Offline FlyinBrian

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2018, 05:36:41 AM »
I need a soldering iron with more oomph than my current one, if I'm to solder EC5 connectors satisfactorily. I imagine that 80w will be sufficient, but I'm tempted get a 100w one. Any thoughts?

Thanks.
Get a big bit!

Its not the size (wattage) you need, you have to have something with a decent sized bit that won't cool when you put it to the wire or connector. A 50W would be more than enough so long as it has a big bit.

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Offline jwb

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2018, 10:52:00 AM »
I have found a much better way of soldering EC connectors.

The problem with using a soldering iron is that you invariably end up with a blob of solder on the side of the connector which makes it difficult to push them into the housing, particularly with the smaller EC3.

I hold the connector vertically in a small vise and use a small gas torch, "Creme Brulee Torch", to gently heat the connector until solder melts and partly fills the solder bucket  then insert the pre-tinned wire.  Perfect joint and no solder on the outside of the connector.

Regards
jwb


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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2018, 14:19:36 PM »
That's how I do it with my 100 W iron, same result no solder down the sides
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Offline pooh

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2018, 08:13:17 AM »
FWIW I use Antex TC50 irons professionally, these are thermostat controlled, presettable temperature, with bit sizes from 0.5mm needle point  to 6mm chisel blade, choose the tip for the job, the thermostat takes care of the rest.

For  connectors like EC5 I would use the larger bit size , wet the bit with a little solder for good heat conduction, apply to the bit to the top side of the connector where the wire goes (have a bit of wood as a base, perhaps with a recess to stop the connector moving), insert the wire into the connector and feed in some solder alongside the wire. - my standard solder is 22 gauge, but have 18 gauge for the heavier stuff. I have had one extremely tedious job that involved making 400 such joints.

These 50watt irons are fine for almost every job I have ever had to solder, including some fairly heavy undercarriage rods and all connectors.
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Offline Chippie

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2018, 09:11:09 AM »
Using a 'big' bit is a good idea as it has a greater surface area for heat transfer. But bear in mind it will take time to reach the melting point of solder when heated by a modest element...also consider heat loss to the surrounding air.....a larger wattage iron is better than a 25 watt one.....both will attain the same temperature over time....but the bigger one will get there quicker.

Holding the connector in some form of 'grip' like a wooden block with hole, is what I use....minimises heat loss.
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Offline pooh

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2018, 11:27:09 AM »
Using a 'big' bit is a good idea as it has a greater surface area for heat transfer. But bear in mind it will take time to reach the melting point of solder when heated by a modest element...also consider heat loss to the surrounding air.....a larger wattage iron is better than a 25 watt one.....both will attain the same temperature over time....but the bigger one will get there quicker.

Holding the connector in some form of 'grip' like a wooden block with hole, is what I use....minimises heat loss.

I'll just add to Chippie's comment about the larger bit.

Yes, contact area is important, but so is thermal mass - a big chunk of copper will "store"more heat than a small one. If the bit thermal mass is greater than the soldered item, it will transfer heat and maintain soldering temperature longer. Unless you are soldering lots of items very quickly one after the other, the 50watt element will "top up" the heat lost in the times between making each joint. In my work example, the thermal mass of the connector was similar to the EC5 and I never had to wait for the iron to reheat despite having an assembly jig that allowed four joints to be made with no significant time gap (perhaps 2 seconds) between each joint.
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Offline Chippie

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2018, 11:54:17 AM »
One more thing about thermal mass and heat transfer....it is important that the bit, no matter how big, makes good thermal/physical contact with the actual 'hot' part of the iron....

Antex soldering irons come in two flavours  with regard to bit design, those with and without a split sleeve....Its a good idea to smear the actual element part with something like 'Coppaslip' then slide the bit over....the addition has twofold benefits....stops the bit from seizing onto the element and aids heat transfer being copper based...
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Offline British Victory

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #10 on: August 20, 2018, 16:47:14 PM »
I'm a complete tyro at soldering, bought a 100W one and subsequently a 50W one, now I never use the 100W one, I can now solder deans, XT60s, XT90s and the ec ones as supplied by kyosho and all I do is ensure the bit is clean and there is a good dose of molten solder on it  which brings the work up to temp pdq, pre-tin the cable ends first as well. I do use the largest bit in the maplins solder station.
I also connect up the connectors with the appropriate other half(vital with deans) as this prevents the plastic insulation from overheating and melting.
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Offline Richard M

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Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #11 on: August 21, 2018, 07:48:18 AM »
Many thanks, to all of you, for your very helpful replies. I would have responded, sooner, but, for some reason, I didn't get any email notifications of any replies! I'll check my settings.
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Offline Chippie

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Re: Soldering Iron Wattage for EC5 Connectors
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2018, 08:00:33 AM »
Check your junk/spam folder....
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