Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Secret to pot soldering

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by Dr.TeleD, Dec 28, 2008.

  1. twangcaster1

    twangcaster1 Friend of Leo's

    Feb 28, 2008
    Nashville, TN
    How do you "tin" the pots and leads? :oops:

  2. teleftcaster

    teleftcaster Tele-Meister

    Jun 23, 2007

    YMMV, but this is how I do it. For the leads, I normally get a good amount of solder on the tip (of the iron)and then hold the leads to it and let the solder permeate the wires. For the pots, I put a very small amount of rosin paste flux on the pot and then heat the area with a 40 watt iron for a few seconds and then apply some solder to the pot, thus making a small pool of solder. The tinned wires should be able to immigrate nicely into the pre-soldered area of the pot when you reheat the combo. Joining the two is where the finesse comes to play...:p
    skypeace likes this.

  3. twangcaster1

    twangcaster1 Friend of Leo's

    Feb 28, 2008
    Nashville, TN
    Oh, I see. I'll try that out.

  4. scubadoo

    scubadoo Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 1, 2008
    Bristol, UK
    i either heat the ends of the wires then touch solder to them, or melt a blob of solder onto some cardboard then stick the wire on it and heat the wire with the iron.

    for pots, i just heat the back and then touch some 60/40 rosin core solder onto it. When it melts remove the iron and let the solder cool by itself.

  5. Verne Bunsen

    Verne Bunsen Tele-Holic

    Nov 29, 2008
    Sonoran Desert
    Wow, I'm so glad I stumbled across this thread. I actually thought I was in the minority for having so much difficulty getting my grounds situated on the backs of my pots. I feel... vindicated! Personally I use the solder-curse-solder-curse method. It doesn't work so well but you feel better.

  6. basher

    basher Tele-Afflicted

    Jun 7, 2007
    Washington, DC

    Ah-HA. That would explain the mysterious heatproof solder that my Squier Jagmaster was wired together with. My little 25 watt iron couldn't budge it. I had to go get a 40 watt iron before I could change pickups, and even then desoldering was a godawful chore. Fortunately the pickups were grounded to the switch lug, otherwise I would have fried the pot for sure getting them unstuck.

  7. NeverStock

    NeverStock TDPRI Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Guys, I"m pretty new to soldering (I did quite a bit of it 20 years ago and I'm assuming it will all come back, but back then it wasn't for guitars. So this is my first time trying to solder guitar components, and I've tried to search for the right temperature to use for this new less toxic solder they're using these days. I bought a 45W Iron with adjustable temperature from Weber's web site. What is a good temperature? As hot as the iron will get? I had it up around 350-360 and it wasn't helping me desolder at all.

  8. fancychords

    fancychords Tele-Holic

    Oct 25, 2004
    staten island ny
    What's the best way to clean the tip of the iron..

  9. Brett Valentine

    Brett Valentine Tele-Meister

    Jun 8, 2005
    . . .I like the"solder-curse-solder-curse" method. Sounds similar to my old "solder-glare-growl" method. Since then, I tend to do the "star grounding" method. I think someone mentioned it earlier, running all the grounds to a common ground wire that is connected to the ground lead on the jack.

    Did that with tis Hamer SATQ, and since the cavity was shielded, I just ran it against the back of control cover.


  10. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Jan 21, 2007
    Tucson, AZ
    I have essential tremors, and they really effect my hands badly at times. I bend the wire so that it lays on the back of the pot on its own accord, I then use my hands to solder that sucker which is a huge challenge for me when my hands are shaking more than normal. I ussually have to position my hands where I can brace them on something to steady them up.

    I don't know crap about electronics, so NickJd, what else can we ground too?

  11. ToadLC

    ToadLC Tele-Meister

    Apr 14, 2008

  12. porknblue

    porknblue Tele-Holic

    Dec 27, 2007
    South Bend, IN
    "Three arms" Good one!

    Can't count the times I've had everything held in place with my Two and had to call the wife, "Quick! Come here and solder this!" Years ago she worked for a place that put terminal ends on wiring harnesses and also PC board soldering. She still has the skill.

    Tinning all parts and concentrating heat at the pot. Good guideance.

  13. Nick JD

    Nick JD Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    You could have a eyelet soldered to the sleeve of the jack that takes the ground wires from the bridge, volume, tone and both pickup's ground wires - twist the whole lot together and solder it in one fell swoop.

    I have a guitar with all grounds going to the three way switch because the pickup wires were joined by shrink wrap stuff.

  14. telecaster1987

    telecaster1987 Tele-Meister

    Mar 21, 2008
    Knoxville, TN
    Hey guys.. There's LEAD in most soft solder, (except RoHS) so it's probably not that good an idea to hold the solder, spool or anything else in your mouth while soldering.

    I always wash my hands after soldering, use a small workbench fan to draw the fumes away from my work, as well as an old range hood over my workbench to vent them out of my shop.

    A couple pair of hemostats are invaluable for holding wires with fewer burnt fingers.
    skypeace likes this.

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