Source for quality X-over boards?

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Not copper?

There is a first time for everything, but I've never seen circuit traces not copper. I have seen plenty with a clear coating you had to sand off to expose the actual copper for solder. And of course the blue or green coating on many.

Did you contact PE and ask what is on their boards?
OK, I blew it. Yes, copper under the silver coating. Maybe tinned copper? It's a really thin coat of copper, I scratched right through it while removing the top coat. But, it's copper.

I'd delete this out of embarrassment but maybe others will have the same (silly) question!


Use a good flux, and a proper electronics grade solder (no audiophile specific stuff) such as Kester in a eutectic blend. A fine rub with some scotchbrite pad or fine sandpaper to knock off the tarnish before application of rosin is a good idea if it isn't already bright and shiny.

Cardas solder isn't my favorite, I really like Kester, it's a joy to use and very nice stuff. Don't bother with lead free if you can help it, there's literally no good reason that a hobbyist needs to choose it over a good traditional type.
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Would you have a link to the Kester solder? I'm assuming they have more than one eutectic type. Which is the one favored around here? I've been wanting to try something other than Cardas. You're not the only one to make that comment and after a year or so of using Cardas, I'm realizing why it isn't a favorite.

I think this is the stuff I use, I can check for certain when I get home.

Kester 44 Rosin Core Solder 63/37 .031" 1 lb. Spool

Cheaper here, but not sure how shipping will factor-

Kester 24-6337-0027 | Sn63/Pb37 Solder WIre, 44 Rosin, .031 diameter, 66 Core, 1 lb.

or with Amazon Prime-

the 60/40 stuff (part 24-6040-0027) also works well and is priced similarly from all the usual places, but the 63/37 is a smidge nicer to use.
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63/37 is the eutectic ratio so it can be reworked more easily - no pastiness. With lead-free solder you need to use the 4% silver variety which is also eutectic or be very frustrated.

With alloys eutectic ratios solidify and melt uniformly at a single temperature, rather than splitting into two phases.
Fortunately Eric is in the USA and can use the leaded solder.

Yes, but California, where everything is outlawed!
We have a new law in CA that states nothing associated with any plumbing fixture can contain lead. Not just items that come in contact with drinking water (That would make sense), but any part of any plumbing fixture can not contain any lead. The nut that holds the fixture to the bottom of the sink, the handles of shut off valves under your house, the bolts and washers that hold a toilet to the floor .... no lead. :yikes:
There's nothing glamorous about heavy metal poisoning, its pernicious and nasty. Remember at some point someone might have to demolish an old building, and if its full of lead pipes and such then they will be breathing lead-containing dust, which cannot be removed from the lungs and brings life-long toxic effects. Lead poisoning may well have turned the roman nobility mad and sterile according to some researchers...
Fortunately I neither drink through solder nor eat it. And I vent away solder fumes, which are flux, not lead vapor.

Actually you probably do eat it, in very small quantities, as soap doesn't remove lead from the skin effectively, and lead solder is soft enough to be rub off onto fingers. Its not as dangerous as the dust though. Much elderly red/orange/yellow/white gloss paint was lead-based, and a real nasty booby-trap for people who didn't realize and power-sanded the old paint off. My view is treat poisons with respect, they never respect you.
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