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Old 03-15-2009, 11:50 AM   #21
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

Oh, I can't let it beat me now. Too much time invested (and pain)! I think changing solder will be the key. I won't resort to crimping the battery cables. The other cables I crimped since I'm not worried about corrosion. Off to Home Depot and more stories to post later... Thanks all
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Old 03-15-2009, 11:55 AM   #22
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

Quote:
Originally Posted by scubabud View Post
Try this if you keep having trouble...

Example: Have you ever soldered copper pipe before with let's say an elbow and a straight piece of pipe? CLEAN the outside of the pipe and the inside of the elbow, apply lots of flux to both the inside of the elbow and the outside of the pipe, put both pieces together and HEAT BOTH at the same time and once they are BOTH HOT apply the solder to the edge. It will draw into the elbow at a nice shiny silver color then you remove the heat and you're done.

Same principle, both need to be hot at the same time for it to work well and prevent a cold solder joint, the solder will be drawn into the lug and strands of wire.
I do the end just like scotty said only I do what is called tinning on the cable ends. This is where you solder coat the cable ends before joining them to the lugs. You don't need to heat the cable up much to do this, only make sure they're clean and use a good flux on them. This eliminates the need to super heat up both wire and lug. soooo both cable and lug do not need to be the same temp for it to work well when joining.
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Old 03-15-2009, 12:12 PM   #23
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

This may help, I use 2 pieces of light bar stock 1/8X1-1/2 clamped in the vise and clamped on to the lug. the bar stock sticking up above the vise and the lug just into between the bar stock. This keeps the vise from acting like a giant heat sink and allowing some room to keep the torch flame on the lug as I insert the wire slowly.
I use a pencil tip torch. GOOD LUCK
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Old 03-15-2009, 12:25 PM   #24
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

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Originally Posted by ruredy View Post
I do the end just like scotty said only I do what is called tinning on the cable ends. This is where you solder coat the cable ends before joining them to the lugs. You don't need to heat the cable up much to do this, only make sure they're clean and use a good flux on them. This eliminates the need to super heat up both wire and lug. soooo both cable and lug do not need to be the same temp for it to work well when joining.
Scottys method is in essence tinning the cable end since he lets the solder pool in the lug then dips his cable it in. Both methods are correct and no one disputes that. But for some reason and I believe DOOmsman probobly hit it on the head, whatever is happening for Extractor sounds like his solder is cooling off too fast to maintain a proper connection. As I stated before to Extractor try this if you keep having trouble.
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Old 03-15-2009, 01:16 PM   #25
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

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Originally Posted by scubabud View Post
put both pieces together and HEAT BOTH at the same time and once they are BOTH HOT apply the solder to the edge. It will draw into the elbow at a nice shiny silver color then you remove the heat and you're done..

That's exactly how I do it and have never had a problem!
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Old 03-15-2009, 05:48 PM   #26
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

If you are using the auto burnz (push button light) torch for propane it barely gets hot enough. The brass torch is hotter on low than the auto is on high. I had some of the trouble that you are describing when using the auto burnz and it took forever to heat up (I'm impatient anyway).

The brass head will melt it right now. I have been using flux core becuase its what I had.

I learned in an electronics class many years ago that when soldering both parts need to be hot. I didn't use to do this but lately I have been holding the end of the cable in the fire just a little, while melting the solder.

I also use the vise grips because they are closer than the vice, I'm heating the lug not the vice grips.

Piece of cake. Just did my final 3 cables yesterday.

I don't think I can tell a difference in performance (stock cart) But the cables don't even get a little warm, so I guess it has to be help'n
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Old 03-16-2009, 08:48 AM   #27
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

Thanks to all for your help. I got rid of the rosin core solder and switched to solid silver solder that has 10% lead. Tried one last night and it worked the best yet! Lots of flux, Heated up the lug in the vise, melted the solder in to about 1/4" from top like what ScottyB said, then kept heating the lug and solder to keep it liquid as I got the tip of the cable heated up also, then stuck it in, presto! May be even easier with some light bar stock like DOOmsman said...I'll try that too (never heard of it but I'll find it somewhere).
Much much easier now! Bring on the cables....
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:11 AM   #28
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

Make sure you have flux on the cable end as well as the lug and never mind heating it just work fast and stuffit in
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:30 AM   #29
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

The other way to skin that cat

Quote:
Originally Posted by gmorrison View Post
Soldering 101.
Good hot soldering iron - or - propane tourch (is better)
Good solder - resin core - Not Acid
Flux cleaner - a inexpensive can of flux cleaner is best (small can) $2.00
A place to hold parts in place.

Dip end 1/2" to 3/4" of wire cable into Flux cleaner -
Dip or brush on a small amount of Flux cleaner on Connector surface to be soldered.
If this is insertion connector(Not recommended) then coat the inside of connector with Flux cleaner.

Crimp cable into position if you have Open Ended Connector.
Now apply Heat to connector and Tip end of Wire junction at the same time,
Flux should melt and become shiny,
Take solder and touch it to the wire and connector junction , (if it starts to flow smoothly) let it crawl up the wire until it reaches all the way through the connector cremp . Don't supply too much heat or the insolation may start melting.
Remove heat and allow to cool.

Note: if you are using a insertion type end, it is more complicated but can
still be done
Follow same instructions except before inserting and cremping, drill a small 1/16'
hole about a quarter ways down from top ,
then Cremp then heat the connector place solder at the drilled hole
and allow solder to flow through the hole on to wire and inside connector.

Get a couple extra short pieces of wire and a couple extra connectors to practice on, you will know when U have it , because it will just look right
The ends / solder will be shiny (no big clumps ) and you will be able to see the strands (sorta) and the end of the Wire)

Good Luck !
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:56 PM   #30
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Default Re: soldering battery lugs

Garry- that's what I originally went by but apparently the resin core was what was giving me the problems- setting too fast before I could stuff the wire in. Switched to solid silver solder and now I'm a pro.
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