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  • Butane Mini-Torch

    I've been thinking of getting a butane mini-torch to supplement my Hakko 60W and Weller 30W irons. If you have one, what do you have and how happy have you been with it?
    Any lessons learned about what to look for when getting one or when using one?
    Thanks, Ron

  • #2
    You get what you pay for. The CCS (cheap chinese sh**) that I bought first and second were useless. I'm looking for something mostly made of metal this time.

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    • #3
      Hi Ron:

      I use the Dremel VersaFlame 2200. Have had it 2 year now and have had no problems (other than my own mistakes). Once you get use to the flame and temperature, solder flows nicely. I also use Ruby flour liquid flux. Another suggestion is to get a bag of cheap alligator clamps as heat sinks. I had joints at the opposite end of the Click image for larger version

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      • Bill from NH
        Bill from NH commented
        Editing a comment
        Do you use that Ruby liquid flux on both brass & steel joints? Or just brass? I used to hear about that flux years ago, but didn't know it was still available.

    • #4
      Originally posted by MnFordGuy View Post
      Hi Ron:

      I use the Dremel VersaFlame 2200. Have had it 2 year now and have had no problems (other than my own mistakes). Once you get use to the flame and temperature, solder flows nicely. I also use Ruby flour liquid flux. Another suggestion is to get a bag of cheap alligator clamps as heat sinks. I had joints at the opposite end of the chassis break loose when I got too much heat

      I notice there are two different models from Dremel, the 2200 and the 2000, which of these two models would be the most versatile for the occasional hobby (slot car use) as well as other workshop/home uses?

      Chris


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      "I don't make mistakes. I make prophecies which immediately turn out to be wrong "
      "And that just shows you how important the car is in Formula One Racing"

      Murray Walker

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      • #5
        Thanks guys, I appreciate it!

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        • #6
          I am not knocking the product, but a Dremel torch just somehow sounds.... Wrong...
          Why doesn't my car run like that?

          Scott

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          • #7
            I use a Weller just like this one. I've been using my current one since 2013 and it's still a champ with the same tips! I've used it in 35knot winds on the top of a mast in winter in the Netherlands. Never had an issue with it.

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            • #8
              Happy New Year Bill:

              Ruby liquid flux on both brass & joints? Or just brass? I used to hear about that flux years ago, but didn't know it was still available.

              I get the Ruby Fluid liquid flux from McMaster Carr. (My local Ace Hardware just started carrying it as well). I have used it primarily on brass. My results with piano wire have not been great, but it most likely was a cleaning issue on my part.

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              • Bill from NH
                Bill from NH commented
                Editing a comment
                I'll have to check my local Ace stores. I have one about 3 mi. away, a second if I want to travel another 5 mi. Thanks.

            • #9
              I tried Ruby, but it didn't work as good as Stay Clean, which I think is the best there is. It is an acid and needs to be washed off when done soldering with baking soda. Just brush it on an solder. The solder will flow and give you a seamless job. i Use butane for brass when I have a fairly large piece. I think I got my torch from Ebay for $10-$20 and have been using it for 5-6 years with no problems. Click image for larger version

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              Matt B
              So. In
              Crashers

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              • #10
                A second vote for Stay Clean, ......I have been using it for decades,.......more chassis builders have chosen Stay Clean over the years than all the others combined.

                Cheers
                Chris Walker

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                • #11
                  Thanks Matt and Chris.....I’ll give the Stay Clean a run. I started with paste flux, but got better results with the ruby, but I know there’s room for improvement.

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                  • #12
                    I bought this about 15 years ago and it's still going strong

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                    • #13
                      Hmm. I'm a bit confused. The few video's I've watched show soldering being done using just the flame. Until this post I didn't even know butane torches came with tips. So when do you use a tip and when do you use the flame directly?

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                      • #14
                        I've got a LOT of rosin core solder, can it be used with Stay-Clean for chassis building?

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                        • 4424ever
                          4424ever commented
                          Editing a comment
                          YES it’s all I use

                      • #15
                        I use one infrequently, only to solder brass sheets/strips together and I have been happy with the Lenk LSP-60 which was recommended on one of the slot sites. Like others here, I am a fan of Stay-Clean. I keep a plastic tub with a concentrated baking soda solution, an old toothbrush and a tub of clean water next to my bench for a dunk, scrub and rinse after every few joints.

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