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Thread: Older Solder Gun Questions

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    Older Solder Gun Questions

    I've never used a solder gun before and I've inherited a Sylvania ss100 solder gun just in time as I'm going to be restoring a Marantz 2275. I'm hoping a few members here may have used this unit before and can answer a few questions. The tip opening of this unit seems to be rather large and I'm not sure whether there is a smaller tip that fits inside it or not. If I need another tip, does anyone know where I can get them?

    Also, how do I empty the old solder after it's been removed? Is there storage inside the unit that is removable?

    It also has a switch marked Line Ground & Terminal switch on it. I plug directly into A/C, which switch do I use?
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    Old Timer Leo_Gnardo's Avatar
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    On a unit like your Marantz, I'd use a medium heat iron, say 30 ish watts, with a fresh clean tip. Also top quality solder removal braid. Techspray is one such brand. Having worked on Marantz of this age, I know you'll be replacing every last electrolytic cap in the unit. I find the old ones failing to the point corrosive goo is leaking out and in many cases, dissolving their leads.

    Marantz of that period are fine sounding hi fi specimens. You don't want to wreck one by learning how to use a big funky old solder sucker on it. Try that thing out on an old point-to-point amp first, to learn what it will and won't do. I'm worried you'll burn the traces off the Marantz's circuit boards.

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    Good point, I cleared out the old solder & the desolder gun works well now but I don't want to lift traces. The manual says the "normal" setting is 20 watts, high heat is 40. The only reason I dug it out was due to a thread that said using braid takes forever.

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    Old Timer Leo_Gnardo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Perkinsman View Post
    Good point, I cleared out the old solder & the desolder gun works well now but I don't want to lift traces. The manual says the "normal" setting is 20 watts, high heat is 40. The only reason I dug it out was due to a thread that said using braid takes forever.
    Braid can be problematic 1) if you're trying to remove non lead solder. That's not the case in your 40+ year old Marantz. 2) if the braid is old, corroded, or low quality dreck. Get the good stuff, fresh from a supplier that moves quantities. Mouser comes to mind. It's not cheap, figure about $1 a foot more or less. I get Techspray 1004, it's fairly wide about 1/10 inch so it soaks up lots of solder. And I use so much fixing amps I go through about a 100 foot roll - now $68 - each year. Cost of doing bizness... Shorter rolls cost more per foot. 3) if the iron is underpowered/cold. A good iron, fresh tip, sometimes you have to add a dot of solder to get things moving but that's a small sacrifice.

    Maybe some techs have better luck with a solder sucker device. I never did. I do use a plunger-style solder sucker with a 35 watt iron on big clots of solder, like clearing eyelets and tube pins in old Fender & similar amps, but that's about it. Sometimes it jams & I have to clear it. So I collected 4 of 'em, that way I can get a lot of stuff done before I have to take a maintenance break.

    There's also the angle you have to aim your tools to get at the place you're trying to remove solder. Sometimes you just can't pry a board into an advantageous position where one of my plungers or your Sylvania could fit. But I can wedge a pencil iron in, sometimes have to use one with a bent tip. And of course the braid is flexible, and you can cut a short piece, hold it in place with needle nose pliers whilst doing the task. Sometimes I have to cram a small flashlight in so I can see what I'm doing. Safety glasses a good idea too, because splashes of solder into the eye are never a good thing.

    Braid can sometimes leave behind flux residue. I clean it off with 95% ethyl alcohol and a q tip. Others might suggest denatured, which is just ethyl with some methyl added, that works too. I find isopropyl doesn't have quite enough solvent power, especially the 70% you can buy cheap at the supermarket. Maybe it's good for something, but I haven't had any on my workbench for decades.

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    Supporting Member nevetslab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Perkinsman View Post
    Good point, I cleared out the old solder & the desolder gun works well now but I don't want to lift traces. The manual says the "normal" setting is 20 watts, high heat is 40. The only reason I dug it out was due to a thread that said using braid takes forever.
    I've never seen one of these Sylvania Desoldering irons. I've been using Pace SX-70's with a MBT base unit, (older unit, replaced with later models) which powers a Soldering Iron, a Desoldering Iron and a Thermojet or second soldering iron. The Dross chamber for the sucked-up solder is inside the handle....a glass tube, with filters in the vacuum air line to keep the system clean. The Tips on desoldering irons are exchangeable, ranging from around -.030" id to 0.090" ID. That's a huge opening on yours, assuming it's one of the many exchangeable tips. I've never seen one that has the dross chamber at the other end of the vacuum hose. Is there a piece missing, perhaps? I too use the Techspray 1804-100 #4 like Leo (and groan every time I have to order a new roll, finding again the price has increased!).

    Weller also makes a low-cost Desoldering Iron that mounts onto their WTCP series irons, called the DS-TCP, which has it's own collar, a Squeeze Bulb, and interchangable desoldering iron tips. These tips look very similar to what is on your desoldering iron.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leo_Gnardo View Post
    Braid can be problematic 1) if you're trying to remove non lead solder. That's not the case in your 40+ year old Marantz. 2) if the braid is old, corroded, or low quality dreck. Get the good stuff, fresh from a supplier that moves quantities.
    I've found that wiping both sides of the braid with a no-clean flux pen really helps especially if the braid is old and as you said apply a dot of fresh solder to a cleaned tip. Holding a dry tip on the braid for too long can lift the trace.

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    Last edited by Dave H; 10-01-2019 at 08:56 PM.

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    I've found that wiping both sides of the braid with a no-clean flux pen really helps especially if the braid is old
    Yeah, I've been using wood resin/rosin (colophony) dissolved in denatured alcohol for this and other fluxing purposes since around 50 years.

    And I love my Edsyn Soldapullt SS350 desoldering tool: http://www.farnell.com/datasheets/57398.pdf. Every EE and technician in my company had one of those.

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    I used a Weller DS-100 for a long time. The base unit has a solenoid air valve, it needs an external vacuum pump running continuously. Didn't work all that well so it sits on my junk shelf.
    I found the Pace SX-70 was much better.

    https://music-electronics-forum.com/...1&d=1569970240
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    Supporting Member Jazz P Bass's Avatar
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    Those heated up solder suckers are a joke!
    Clean the tip, unclog the barrel, clean the filter, wait for it to get to temperature.

    I have used this handy device for years.
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    https://www.stewmac.com/Luthier_Tool...er_Sucker.html
    It has never let me down.

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    I have a few of that exact one Jazz, they work well. I prefer it to the plastic ones, though they work fine too. I hate braid.

    i found the blue metal ones on surplus somewher quite a few years ago. They were dirt cheap, like a dollar or two. The whole tool was cheaper than the replacement tips for the plastic ones. If my tip died, I just moved to another tool.

    But for most work, my PAce unit with the SX70 is supreme. I dearly love it, and couldn't imagine not having it.

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    I prefer it to the plastic ones,
    Maybe there was a misunderstang. I didn't mean the cheaper plastic ones. The Soldapullt SS350 is the professional version (around 25 Euro):

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    It has a metal barrel and the plastic parts are carbon reinforced and conductive for ESD protection. It is much more powerful and easier to handle than the cheaper plastic and metal ones I used before. Easy to empty and clean. I've been using mine for over 10 years now and didn't even have to change the tip.

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    Last edited by Helmholtz; 10-02-2019 at 09:37 AM.
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    Yup Helmholtz that's the solder sucker I have used for years too. Gotta get a few extra tips for it one of these days but the original one is still getting the job done so I haven't felt the urge to replace it yet.

    When I was more novice than I am today I made the mistake of sucking up some solder pad eyelets. Nowadays I can basically just look at the board and know right away whether I can use the solder sucker.

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    Old Timer Leo_Gnardo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazz P Bass View Post
    Those heated up solder suckers are a joke!
    Clean the tip, unclog the barrel, clean the filter, wait for it to get to temperature.

    I have used this handy device for years.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    It has never let me down.
    Yep, that's the one I use. Four in fact, rattling around in an old coffee can on me workbench. Those and a roll of braid, we can do most anything. Started to like these a lot, after I got whacked in the eye by a Soldapullit 209.

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    The best solder sucker I ever used was in Denmark 30 years ago and had s soft silicone tip that sealed really well around the joint and against PCB especially leaving no trace of solder.. I'd love to find those softer tips vs the teflon ones all the tools today seems to use. I suppose I could cast my own with 600 casting silicone but that's not my jam.

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    I had one with flexible tips in the '80s and the same tip lasted for years of frequent use, but I've not seen them for sale since then.

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    Stray Cap DrGonz78's Avatar
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    This one has the silicone type tip adapter. Looks like you cut selected lengths and put it on the main tip. Probably not what you had in mind but I wonder if this one works well?

    https://www.adafruit.com/product/159...IaAiFtEALw_wcB

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    Should be easy to fit a piece of silicone tubing over the tip of most solder suckers.

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