Soldering Equipment 130

This class provides an introduction to basic soldering equipment selection, including safety equipment.

  • Difficulty Beginner

  • Format Online

  • Number of Lessons 15

  • Language English


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Course Outline
  • Objectives
  • What Is Soldering Equipment?
  • Electric Soldering Irons
  • Soldering Iron Tips
  • Gas-Powered Soldering Torches
  • Types of Solder
  • Lead-Free Solder
  • What Is Flux?
  • Rosin-Based Flux
  • Water-Soluble Flux
  • ESD-Safe Devices
  • Desoldering Equipment
  • Soldering Accessories
  • Soldering Safety Equipment
  • Summary
  • Describe basic soldering equipment.
  • Describe characteristics of electric soldering irons.
  • Describe features of soldering iron tips.
  • Describe features of gas-powered soldering torches.
  • Distinguish between types of solder.
  • Describe characteristics of lead-free solder.
  • Describe how flux is used in soldering.
  • Describe features of rosin-based fluxes.
  • Describe features of water-soluble fluxes.
  • Describe practices for preventing ESD while soldering.
  • Distinguish between types of desoldering equipment.
  • Identify types of soldering accessories.
  • Describe types of soldering safety equipment.
Vocabulary Term

60/40 solder

Solder that is made of 60% tin and 40% lead. 60/40 is the most commonly used type of solder.

63/37 solder

Solder that is made of 63% tin and 37% lead. 63/37 solder is also known as eutectic solder and is often preferred because it goes directly from a solid to liquid state when melted.


The measure of flux cleaning strength. The more active the flux, the more effectively it cleans, though fluxes with higher activity may damage some components.

benchtop fume extractor

A device designed to remove harmful fumes caused by solder and flux from the soldering workstation by filtering the air.

blowtorch tip

An alternative to the traditional soldering iron tip that is used with soldering torches. A blowtorch tip creates a flame that is generally adjustable so that you can control the temperature.


A type of liquid fuel, also known as lighter fluid, used in gas-powered soldering torches.


A device used to grip or support components while soldering. Using a clamp leaves the technician's hands free for manual soldering.


The measure of a material's ability to conduct heat or electric current. Soldering iron tips are often made of copper due to its high conductivity.

desoldering iron

A device that both heats solder and removes it through suction. A desoldering iron is a combination of a soldering iron and a desoldering pump.

desoldering pump

A suction device used to remove molten solder during the desoldering process. The molten solder cools in the pump and can then be emptied.

dry chemical extinguisher

A fire extinguisher filled with a flame-retardant powder, which separates fuel from oxygen. Dry chemical extinguishers are used to extinguish electrical fires.

electrostatic discharge

A discharge of static electricity that can potentially cause injury or damage components while soldering. Also known as ESD.


Equipment that is designed to reduce electrostatic discharge. ESD-safe wrist straps and bench mats are often used while soldering.


A substance that facilitates soldering, brazing, and welding by chemically cleaning the metals to be joined. Common varities of flux include water-soluble flux and rosin-based flux.

flux pen

A pen-shaped container used to apply flux to components before soldering.


A cloud of particles suspended in a gas. Applications such as soldering that emit fumes require proper ventilation.

hot-air pencil

An alternative to a soldering iron that heats the joint with a stream of hot air. Hot-air pencils are not as commonly used as traditional soldering irons.


A material not containing carbon, derived from nonliving substances such as minerals.


The point at which two metals are joined together by hot liquid solder, which cools and solidifies to form the joint.


A soft, heavy, and malleable metal often used in solder. Lead produces toxic fumes that can cause health problems with prolonged exposure.

lead-free solder

Solder that contains less than 0.2% lead. The use of lead-free solder is becoming more common due to the health hazards of prolonged lead exposure.

metal sponge tip cleaner

A type of soldering iron tip cleaner that uses brass shavings to clean the soldering iron tip. This type of tip cleaner helps to better maintain tip temperature than cleaning with a traditional sponge and water and is recommended especially for lead-free soldering.

no-clean flux

A type of flux that does not require cleaning after soldering. However, it is less active than other types of flux and should only be used with materials that are easy to solder.


A material containing carbon and derived from living organisms.


A material's chemical reaction with oxygen. Oxidation causes rust and tarnish to form on metal surfaces, and prevents solder from bonding.


A substance deposited or left behind by a reaction or event. Flux residue must often be removed from components.

rosin-based flux

A type of flux made from purified pine sap and available in three activity levels. Rosin-based fluxes have lower activity than water-soluble fluxes.


A type of lead-free solder made from tin, silver, and copper. SAC is often preferred for its low melting point.

safety glasses

Protective eyewear, usually made of thick plastic, that shields the eyes from flying debris. Safety glasses should always be worn while soldering.

safety gloves

Protective hand covers that reduce the risk of injury and exposure to high temperature substances or toxic chemicals.


A type of lead-free solder made from tin and copper.


A metal alloy with a melting point or melting range below 840°F (450°C) that is melted to join metallic surfaces.

solder wick

An interwoven material, generally made of copper, that is used to remove small amounts of solder. Solder wick is also known as desoldering braid.


A process in which a filler metal is melted at temperatures below 840° to form a joint between two base metals. Soldering is often used for delicate projects such as jewelry and electronics.

soldering gun

A type of soldering device with a pistol-type grip and a wide work tip. Soldering guns are generally not used for delicate electronic components because regulating the temperature can be difficult.

soldering iron

An instrument used to transfer heat to a metal surface in order to melt solder and form a joint or circuit. Soldering irons can be powered by gas, batteries, or an electrical outlet.

soldering torch

A type of soldering device that uses a flame rather than a soldering iron tip to heat solder. Soldering torches are often powered by butane.

surface tension

An effect within the surface layer of a liquid that causes that layer to behave as an elastic sheet. This effect leads to reduced wetting capability in lead-free solder.


A silvery white metal that is very soft and has poor strength. Tin is used in soldering alloys.

water-soluble flux

A type of flux that leaves residue that can be removed with water rather than a cleaning solvent. Water-soluble fluxes have higher activity than rosin-based fluxes.


A unit of measurement that indicates the amount of electrical power used by a device.


The amount of electrical power required by a device to work properly. Electric soldering irons are available in varying levels of wattage.


The contact between a fluid and a surface. A fluid with good wetting ability will spread out over a greater area.

wire cutters

A hand-held device used to cut wire similar in appearance to pliers or scissors.

wire strippers

A hand-held device used to remove insulation from wire before soldering.

wrist strap

A static-resistant wrist band that can be worn while soldering to reduce the risk of ESD.