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Old 23rd December 2009, 04:17 PM   #1
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Default Question Regarding Soldering Cardas Wire

Sorry if this question has been asked before.

Need to solder some Cardas SE15 wire to binding posts. As I understand it, the Cardas has each strand of wire enamel coated. When trying to use some before, I had a terrible time getting it to take solder.

I understand the best way to remove the enamel is with a solder pot. I do not have one, and this is a small project... I would prefer not to buy one....besides I would like to get this done and not wait for shipping

Is there an alternate way to prep this wire? I would appreciate your comments and suggestions.

For what its worth, I am using the cheap Stahl soldering station. I know nota great iron...but barnyard animals are poor.....

Mister Pig
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Old 23rd December 2009, 04:33 PM   #2
godfrey is offline godfrey  South Africa
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Maybe something useful here:
Groundside Electrons
or here:
soldering binding posts and copper litz wire
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Old 30th December 2009, 05:38 AM   #3
mavric is offline mavric  United States
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just try and and clean it with denataured alchohal, I know I spelled that wrong, but that should be cheep and remove any conatamanents, might want to use a little flux so the solder will stick at a lower temp. even rubbing alc should work, you just need to get rid of the greese. Thats my two cents. Its cheap and should work, cost=.99cents.
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Old 31st December 2009, 12:19 AM   #4
Face is offline Face  United States
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You need a hotter iron.
"He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche
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Old 31st December 2009, 04:17 AM   #5
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Location: Central USA
Default Soldering Thin enameled strands

Originally Posted by mister pig View Post
Sorry if this question has been asked before.

Need to solder some Cardas SE15 wire to binding posts. As I understand it, the Cardas has each strand of wire enamel coated. When trying to use some before, I had a terrible time getting it to take solder.
You can do this with your soldering iron if the strands are 28ga or smaller.
I do this all the time.

Untwist the wires and separate (fan) the strands out just past the length you want to solder. Use a screwdriver soldering tip. Sponge your tip and place a heat dot on the flat. Place the heat dot on one strand in the area you want tinned. (Best to use tin/lead solder for this.) Coax the strand to immerse in the heat dot. Rub the tip up and down the length to be tinned. Best if the length is short - too long and you cannot keep the heat up. As the enamel melts, you may need to "dot" more solder to the opposite side to assist in wicking the wire and floating the enamel. Note that the burning enamel should not be breathed. You can tell by the feel of moving the tip along the wire when you've reached past the enamel.

My iron is adjustable and I set for about 700-750 degrees for 32ga or smaller. Most stranded wire like this is 32 or smaller. If yours is not adjustable, you should use a 25W iron. I suppose there is not a reason to not use a hotter setting or iron. Depends on the insulation position and type.

After wicking one strand, sponge the tip anew and place a new heat dot for each strand.
Remove excess solder (which won't be much) by flicking the hot wire with the soldering tip.
If the strands are all flicked you should be able to twist them back together and finish your connections.

If your connection length needs to be longer, you may have to do each strand in two stages.

Solder pots are expensive to maintain and consume a lot of energy sitting there idling. They also take a while to get up to temp. By the time the pot is ready, you can do two or more of multi-strand wires. Be aware that a solder pot may NOT reach into a twisted wire, only tinning the outside.
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Old 31st December 2009, 05:56 AM   #6
sangram is offline sangram  India
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Before I had a iron hot enough for the job, I used fine grit sandpaper to remove the litz coating.

The iron is much, much easier. I use a generic 125W sheet metal iron - cost me $2.50 from a street vendor. Solders everything in a second, even the impossible Cardas milled spades. The Litz solders like ordinary wire, it's that hot.
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