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FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Lead free solder - RoHS

Previous 20 Messages  


"...those glassy, bell like tones..."
Jan 24th, 2009 08:59 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

interesting, when i ordered for drri two years ago - i live in Croatia and the order was made to Fender central in Netherlands - i waited 13 months for the amp to arrive. upon frequent phone calls i made during those months, i was told there is a certain quota that must not be excedeed when importing non-rohs compliant goods to EU. Fender Croatia also told me that Fender Europe had to change ordering policy because now they have a limit and they are quite carefull as to what they're ordering from Usa. So i waited for 13 months for the amp...

Possible scenario: 20 years of Lead prohibition, and then when they decide Lead is not dangerous after all, Fender will make expensive vintage - correct series of amps and guitars with Leaded solder joints and vintage enthusisasts will praise its tone

Contributing Member

Detroitish, MI, USA

I may be a lover but I ain't no dancer.
Mar 20th, 2009 04:51 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"The reliability of lead free joints is not proven to the point that it is permitted for use in aerospace and medical applications."

"Yes, us aerospace boys still use leaded solder."

As another aerospace guy, I hope to never have to switch. I abhor working with lead-free solder.

Thankfully, the looming threat of tin whiskers is enough to keep the lead-free stuff out for quite a while. Plus, "tin whiskers" is so much fun to say.

Tin whisker info from NASA


Oxford, UK

Jun 22nd, 2009 07:44 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I actually work for a consultancy company that deals with the EU/US laws for RoHS and REACH and all sorts of other environmental legislation.

I can't tell you what the best type of non-lead solder is for hand soldering or otherwise, but I can confirm the laws at the moment.

In the EU, you can't have lead in a guitar that is sold, anywhere. If a guitar was made pre-legislation, then it's ok. So a 62 strat could still be sold legally in the UK. But anyhting since about 2005 has to be lead free.

In the USA, there is no federal RoHS law, but some states are starting the ball rolling on bringing it in.

I'm not sure what happens about repairs/mods. eg I bought a rohs-compliant CP60's strat in January. (I'm in the UK). I changed the pickups, and then decided it wasn't for me after all. I used Sn/Pb solder. I'm not sure whether selling it with that solder was legal, strictly speaking?



RonHalen Jokingly He Says
Jul 19th, 2009 12:08 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

If you use the lead free solder, do you have to remove all the lead solder first?



Jul 19th, 2009 08:10 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I don't think your do. I've used leaded solder on "RoHS" boards and it seems to flow fine. Haven't noticed any down-side to it. Maybe somebody else could chime in.

Contributing Member


Nov 14th, 2009 01:09 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I tried Lead free and hate it. I truly hope a better substitute is is on the horizon.



Mar 30th, 2010 08:48 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I really like the radio shack lead free stuff...

Funny thing an above post mentioning the whole tone difference...
I think the silver stuff sounds better to me.

No adhesion problems, and it's pretty stout stuff. (at least for me!)

Contributing Member

W.Warwick R.I.

I brake for 'da blues baby!
Jul 5th, 2011 08:19 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

@ Dr.Mark; very interesting. What's your take on when I was selling hardware we had what is (was) call 50/50 solder?

Contributing Member


"Edited for bad taste...."
Dec 27th, 2012 09:50 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

RoHS is a really annoying issue for the guitar community.
It's a laudible concept for an age of disposable electronics, where tons of old kit and comnputers are binned off everyday.
That said, Ii has no relevasnce or benefit to this industry, where we expect our kit to be in use for many years [or even generations!] before it's junked or re-cycled.



Apr 30th, 2013 01:52 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

What about precoius metals like silver or gold solder? It might seem like a joke but I'm sure some boutique amp and guitar manufacturers could use it as advertising mojo silve thouse metals have legendery conductivity specs.

Contributing Member

Northeast IL

Not very bright but does lack ambition
May 13th, 2013 06:32 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Interesting article about major issues with RoHS:

Tin Whiskers

Contributing Member

The Solderist

May 20th, 2013 04:14 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

This is one of those things that makes my brain hurt.

The lead solder inside of the guitars I fix and the pedals I make isn't hurting anybody.



Jun 5th, 2013 02:57 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I would think that the most practical laws would be to force new production electonics manufacturers not to use leaded solder. But to go after people making repairs on old electronics and hobbyists seems silly. They use such a small fraction of solder compared to total consumption. Seems petty and bureaucratic.

Contributing Member

Saskatchewan, Canada

Jul 14th, 2014 08:05 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thanks Dr. Mark, for a highly informative post.

I moved the neck strap ring on my tenor saxophone last week I used lead free plumbing solder and flux. I used a butane-fired hand-held torch and soldered it in the same manner as I would solder 1/2" (13mm) copper water lines around the house. So far, so good but I never let my horn hang freely, just in case.

(This message was last edited by fscott at 10:12 PM, Jul 14th, 2014)

Previous 20 Messages  

FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Lead free solder - RoHS

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