If you are using metal in building something, you will most likely need to join pieces of metal together. You can do it in different ways: by welding, soldering, or brazing. Welding tightly bonds two metals by melting and joining them together at certain points. Soldering is the process in which two or more metals are joined together using molten filler metal. The filler metal has a melting point lower than the metals to be joined. Brazing is somewhat similar and also employs filler metal; however, brazing uses filler metal that melts at higher temperatures.
Soldering is an essential tool in building anything from a child’s toy to an aircraft. While welding makes very strong joints between metals, it is usually used in building something that needs to stand up to great strains and stresses such as battle tanks. Welding makes a very strong mechanical connection. Soldering, on the other hand, makes a weaker joint. It is often intended to make electrical contacts or contacts where the connection is reversible rather than permanent.
Soldering uses alloys from metals that have a melting point lower than 450°C. A typical solder is an alloy of 99.25 percent tin and 0.75 percent copper. Solder alloys may contain flux, such as ammonium chloride or hydrochloric acid, which prevents oxide formation.
Uses of Soldering
Electronic devices are composed of separate and distinct components such as resistors, transistors, capacitors, and LEDs. Each one of them has a specific function or job to perform. By joining these parts together in different ways, you can build different kinds of electronic devices, such as calculators, computers, televisions, gaming devices, and others.
Each of the different components has metal legs or terminals that need to be connected into circuits. The legs could be connected using electrical cables, but the cables may be disconnected or wriggle free, resulting in a poor or unreliable connection. Any device built this way will be very fragile and will not function very well. This is where soldering comes in. Soldering makes effective and reliable electrical connections.
Soldering starts by cleaning the components to be joined. The next step is to mechanically connect the two components by wrapping the cable around the component. Finally, you can make an electrical connection by melting some solder alloy on top of the mechanical connection. You will need a soldering iron to melt the solder and joint the components.