Soldering ideas from a recent learner will not do a thing for all you pros here. But being recently schooled by hard knocks and my own ignorance, I'm gonna write down a few t'ings I wish I'd known when I started. 1. Basics: The big mistake on my first build was setting the iron too low to 'protect' those tiny little components. I've since watched lots of old how-to-solder films from trade schools (the newer videos are about soldering microcircuits, pretty useless to us). They point out you need your iron hot enough and big enough to do the typical flow in 2 seconds. Two seconds. Cooler = longer = more time to overheat components. With my inexpensive 40w solder station, solder temp is about 9.5 on the dial and desolder is 10. Works fine. Also, use a tip big enough to contact both the work and the leads; most modern tips are made for work on micro pads and wire. Do flow a tiny microblob of solder between tip and work to facilitate heat transfer -- but then immediately move the solder away from the iron to the work. The work, not the iron, should melt the working solder. And yeah, make sure the wires and leads already hang together by bending, shaping, crimping, or twisting -- solder should anchor things that are already in contact, not fill the void between things that are nearby. 2. Details: I really like eutectic 63/37 solder. Melts all at once, then sets up at once when you remove heat. Handy for all those parts that wanna wiggle. I like to have both .031 and some .05 or .06 on hand. The fine stuff is great for tacking leads in place, the fatter stuff for filling turrets or eyelets. You can get Kester .031 in 1-oz packs on Amazon if somehow you don't need a 1-pound spool, and Radio Shack has the fatter type in hobby-size reels. Also, get some acid brushes (dead cheap from any solder or amp-building source) and an upright alcohol dispensing bottle -- Amazon has plastic ones, like we guitar types see at the plasma center -- and some 100% isopropyl (not drug store rubbing alcohol) to clean joints before and after soldering. Plus, a flux pen (Kester makes one) is superb for big, crusty, or old components. And I found some thicker flux in a blunt-needle syringe that's great for tough or big jobs, like 12 ga wire or Switchcraft plugs. 3. Turrets v. eyelets: People with a lot more experience than me often strongly prefer one or the other. (Slightly more often turrets?) I've tried both now, and for the early-on builder I'd say: they both work well and they both have advantages turrets are probably easier for attaching multiple leads, and to 'fly' components or arrange at different altitudes turrets are a bit easier to revise *if* you put on the components you might change with no more than a 190-240° wrap, and if you put wires in the center hole with only a short (1/8") straight segment. eyelets work surprisingly well, though, and have one big advantage for the hobbyist: they heat up nice and fast, which makes it way easier to get in, solder, and get out, without swamping your heat sinks (you are using heat sinks, aren't you?) eyelets aren't all that hard to revise, since you can clip the old component, grab the wire stub with small pliers, and pull it as soon as the solder heats; then a solder suction cleaner can totally clean the eyelet from the front while you heat the back -- OTOH sucking solder out of turrets, well, sucks a lead bender (or precise jeweler pliers) can easily form leads to fly components above eyelets too if you're methodical, you can fit a surprising number of leads in an eyelet; there are spots on my PR board with 7 wires in an eyelet, and they weren't that bad. For that matter, it ain't fun doing 7 on a turret either eyelets are actually a bit easier to tack lightly as components get attached -- a very slight tack job can hold things in place during assembly 4. This brings up another eyelet trick. Crowding all sorts of heat sinks around a turret and then soldering with them there can take a big, hot iron, and just getting the iron into the turret becomes a challenge. Well, you say, at least a turret's not flat, like an eyelet. *But* with an eyelet it's easy to flip the board (on a 3rd-hand-stand, say) with the heat sinks totally out of the way on the front, then solder from the back of the eyelet. Although it's true you can bring backside wires into a turret very nicely and solder them there, good luck attaching 7 things to the front while soldering from the back. 5. Backside soldering on eyelets is actually a breeze after a little practice to get a feel for how much solder to use. Done right, it makes a gorgeous shiny dome on the front and ... no ugly flux collar. Some people like to do this over a mirror, but I found it hard to light and unnecessary once I got a feel for the X mm of .06 solder that it takes to fill an eyelet and form a dome. Still, practice -- an eyelet with 7 leads fills faster than one with 2. And: there are places (frontside wires that insist on dropping out of place, with only a few, easy heat sinks) where soldering on the front is still easier. 6. If you want to practice before working on either turrets or eyelets, lots of makers (Doug Hoffman or Watts Audio, for example) will sell you a very inexpensive small board with either turrets or eyelets -- a 5f1 or 5f2a works well. If you don't have extra resistors, wire, and caps from a prior build, you can order a stash very cheaply from any source. It doesn't hurt to order some extras of the actual parts, sizes, colors you'll be using on your build... 7. Still with me? I find it useful to have at least 3 kinds of heat sink; 4 or 5 of the inexpensive flat silvery spring-loaded kind, a few red-plastic-dipped fat boys, and one or two fine to medium hemostats 8. A little planning will let you attach heat sinks more easily. Resistors that float 1-2 mm above the board are easier to grab. Try to make sure that components approaching a crowded junction have some lead between body and bend -- this may mean one end has a longer lead than the other. See if some artful offsetting helps you get to both a resistor and its cap -- this is good for heat dissipation too. 9. Speaking of planning, to put first things last, check and recheck, take a break, and then check again that things are in the right place, are the right things, approach from the correct side (backside wiring needs quadruple checking), and are *all* of the things that go to a turret or eyelet before you fill / finalize. Remember what I said about hard knocks? 10. Watch those old training films on YouTube and read all the helpful posts about soldering here on TDPRI!