Lead free soldering anyone?

Have any of you guys tried lead free solder/soldering stations yet? I keep reading that the joints won't look as shiny and smooth as with common 60/40 composition.

I looked at Circuitspecialists.com last night and saw that they had a few lead free specific soldering stations. The description says that it takes more heat to melt lead free solder, but those stations get to the same temperature as the traditional stations that they sell, but cost more. I have their smallest station, the CS1 and it is great for only $35. I was thinking of moving up to one of the rework station with hot air, but then the lead free stations caught my eye. I do a lot of studio installs that require DAYS of soldering patchbays and interconnects. I would make me feel a lot better to know that I wasn't inhaling lead fumes for like a week straight.

Can I begin to use the lead free variety of solder and just use my current soldering station? Is it worth even using lead free? I heard that the halides in the fumes were actually even worse for you than the lead was....

Greg
 
The switch to lead-free is about as scientifically valid as the switch to DDT-free. If you are trying to use lead-free with your old iron, switch tips at least, and experiment with the temperature. It would be a good idea to use a magnifier to examine the joints until you feel comfortable with the new stuff. As for me, I plan on staying leaded as long as possible, and joining the lobby if the US starts making noise about going lead-free.