Experiences with lead free solder

Collection of answers to the basic questions of stompbox building.

Experiences with lead free solder

Postby seziertisch » 22 May 2008, 16:21

This is slightly off topic, but what have your experiences been with lead free solder.

I have just started building and can't seem to get it to work. I am using a 25 watt iron and I can't seem to tin the tip. It just beads up and falls off. I have started using tip tinner and cleaner and it works for a bit but after a relatively short time the tip is blackened and unusable. I have watched numerous tutorials on soldering on youtube and I just can't get my iron to behave the same way.

Has anyone else had this experience. I mean, I expected I would botch a few joints as a result of not being experienced but being unable to bring my tools up to a usable standard was not one of the barriers I expected.

I have also read in a few places that depending on the lead-free solder you are using that some won't give a shiny joint no matter what you do. (Well, at least I hope that is the explanation for the lack of shine on my joints).

What solder would the more seasoned builders recommend? I am living in Europe (where all solder is lead free) are there any particular kinds of leadfree that are better for effects building than others, or should I try and source some leaded?
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