Never rub the tips against a fire brick to remove
The soldering gun (fig. 9-22) operates from any
Do not drill the tip orifice to a different size.
standard 115-volt outlet and is rated in size by the
number of watts it consumes. The guns used in the Navy
When changing from one type of powder to
are rated between 100 and 250 watts. All good quality
another, be sure the torch is free of all previously
soldering guns operate in a temperature range of 500°
to 600°F. The important difference in gun sizes is not
the temperature. Instead, it is the capacity of the gun to
Be sure the powdered metal module is properly
generate and maintain a satisfactory soldering
seated (90-degree turn only) and the connective
temperature while giving up heat to the joint soldered.
junction is free of all foreign matter.
The tip heats only when the trigger is depressed, and
Observe all standard safety precautions for
then very rapidly. These guns afford easy access to
handling and using oxyacetylene equipment.
cramped quarters, because of their small tip. Most
soldering guns have a small light that is focused on the
Handle all maintenance and repairs according to
tip working area.
the manufacturer's instructions.
The tip of a soldering gun should be removed
occasionally to clean away the oxide scale that forms
between the tip and the metal housing. This increases
the heating efficiency of the gun. If the tip does get
Soldering is used to join iron, nickel, lead, tin,
damaged, replace it.
copper, zinc, aluminum, and many alloys. Soldering is
A Hull Maintenance Technician seldom works on
a simple, fast, and effective joining process. It is
electronic equipment. Still, you should remember never
particularly useful for securing electrical connections,
to use a soldering gun on solid-state equipment. The
joining sheet metal, and sealing seams against leakage.
strong electromagnetic field surrounding the tip can
Soldered joints are not as strong as welded joints, and
cause serious damage to solid-state components.
should not be used where any great mechanical strength
is required. Soft solders always have melting points
below 800°F and below the melting points of the metals
to be joined.
There are two general types of soldering irons in
use by the Navy. One is electrically heated and the other
is nonelectrically (externally) heated.
Soldering requires only a small amount of
equipment. For most soldering jobs, you will need only
a source of heat, irons, solder, and a flux. The sources
of heat vary according to the method used and the
equipment that is available. Welding torches, furnaces,
and other heating devices may be used. In most cases,
the heating devices are used to heat soldering irons,
which are then used to heat the surfaces and thus to melt
the solder. However, the heating devices are sometimes
used for the direct heating of the surfaces to be joined.
In this case also, the solder is melted by the heated
If you use a welding torch as a source of heat for
soldering, use it carefully. A welding torch gives out
much more heat than is actually required for soldering.
If you overheat the soldering coppers, you will have to
retin them and perhaps reforge them. Excessive heat
also may damage or warp the metal that is being joined
Figure 9-22.--Electric soldering gun.