Hands on with a Soldering Iron


My first solder

Earlier this week, I stopped by my local Radio Shack and picked up a soldering iron, wire, and a stripper. Yesterday, I finally had a chance to use it when I pulled out an old PC modem card (for practice) and went to town.

I managed to solder six wire ends to random spots on the board. The reason I didn’t do more is because the room I was in clearly wasn’t ventilated properly (got a little dizzy.) The first thing I learned was that the gauge of wire I’m using is a little too thick, though still workable. Second thing was that it was easier to put some solder on the tip of the wire first, then place the tip on the spot I wanted it connected to, and then heat the wire, causing the solder to precisely melt into place. In the end, all my wires were attached well enough that I could lift the board. And none of my solder leaked into an adjacent point of electronic interest.

This weekend, I plan on setting up a space in the garage, so that I don’t have to kill as many brain cells next time. And so that I can finally take apart a toy instrument and play connect-the-dots.

Part of Get Bent.

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