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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: Vintage (before 1985) / Chassis grounds



Oct 27th, 2016 09:45 PM   Edit   Profile  

What size is recommended? All I have is a 40W iron and that's not cutting it even with the widest tip I have. I have a Weller 100-140W soldering gun but the wire tips don't have enough surface area to generate enough heat fast enough before the chassis sucks it all away.
Will a 200W soldering iron with a copper chisel point tip be sufficient for doing chassis grounds or would it be better with something larger like a 250W?

Contributing Member

Cincinnati, USA

Oct 28th, 2016 09:45 AM   Edit   Profile  

I have a 100 watt iron with an 800F 3/8" chisel tip that can handle chassis grounds, no problem. I've seen testimony on this site that 80W irons are enough. I can't personally vouch for those but can say 100W will do it fine.

Mine is a Weller W100. You can buy a range of tips in different sizes and temperatures. The iron was originally purchased with the 3/8" tip for stained glass work but I now use it with a 600F 1/8" tip for general tube amp work. Takes a few minutes to change the tip because it has to cool a bit.



Oct 28th, 2016 02:53 PM   Edit   Profile  

Well if your able to do it with a 100w then a 200w should definitely do it I would think. I haven't had any luck with my 140w gun. Cleaned and lightly scuffed up the chassis in the area, added a little flux and the 60/40 solder stuck but popped off when I tapped on it after it cooled. Tried several times with the same results. The solder wouldn't melt when touching it to the chassis surface right next to the tip of the gun so that tells me the guns not getting hot enough for the rate the chassis is sucking the heat away from the tip.



Fender power to the people!
Oct 28th, 2016 03:28 PM   Edit   Profile  

I too have used an 80 watt for that.
Eylets screwed to the PT bolts work fine...
until it loosens up.



Oct 28th, 2016 03:52 PM   Edit   Profile  

In that case maybe my 140w is not putting out like it should be.

(This message was last edited by roadhog96 at 05:58 PM, Oct 28th, 2016)

Contributing Member

Cincinnati, USA

Oct 29th, 2016 09:20 PM   Edit   Profile  

It's not just the watts but also the thermal mass. The big tips have a lot of mass so they don't cool off much when you hold them against the chassis. The tip on the gun doesn't have that much mass in comparison so it can't bring the temperature of the chassis up very easily.

I used to use the same 100/140 watt gun for everything but after I bought an assortment of tips for the 100 watt iron, I quit using the gun and use the iron for all but PC board work.

Contributing Member

So. Cal. USA

Oct 31st, 2016 09:42 AM   Edit   Profile  

I have an 80 watt Weller with a 3/8" tip and it works just fine for chassis grounds. Clean the area, tin the iron and it takes just seconds.


LA , Calif

I try my best
Nov 2nd, 2016 08:05 PM   Edit   Profile  

I have an old Bell Telephone 90 watt that has a wood handle and 1/2" wide screw driver tip and a Weller Red 120 watt , never tried to solder with it , used it just to basically steam out dents in wood.

Point being I have this sort of selection of old Ungar irons. Three handles and all sorts of ceramic heaters that most have screw in tips and maybe 6 heaters that have no ceramic visible area yet screw in the same handles and are long and a few are 45 watt and 2 are 50 watt. 1 50 watt has a 1/4" wide screw driver tip and I used it to remove and replace the filter cap can in a SF Champ. It melted the old solder easy and had no trouble soldering in the new one.

I have no idea what the temp is or what it's purpose is yet it does the job. I have never tried to solder a ground to an area on a fender amp chassis that was not already soldered to.

FDP Forum / Fender Amps: Vintage (before 1985) / Chassis grounds

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