RoHS compliant soldering

When I decided to revamp my old hobby called electronics, I decided to be RoHS compliant and bought lead-free solder.

  • make: Edsyn
  • type: SAC8250
  • alloy: Sn95.5Ag3.8Cu0.7
  • flux: F-SW34 (no-clean)
  • melting point: 217°C

As my good old soldering iron works at 350°C this seemed to be OK. Unfortunately there were some negative side effects: I just can’t tin copper wire/pads as I used to and solder points look strangely grayish, just like the bad ones with SnPb solder, or frosted like frozen windows. The bad thing about it is that I payed 20€ for the stuff, and I’m really not sure if I would touch expensive chips with it :-(

There’s also some lead-free solder (FLOWTIN) made by STANNOL that’s supposed to deliver lead-solder-like results, but I haven’t bought that yet. It is about 2x as expensive as the Edsyn stuff.

Working with the SAC8250 feels like I can’t solder anymore… hmpf!

Link: how-to-go-green-with-lead-free-solder

Some images of how SAC8250 compares to my usual Sn60Pb38Cu2 solder:

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All the bad looking spots were made with the lead-free solder. The unhealthy stuff looks best, as usual.

Update 20.09.2008:

Even with additional flux (EDSYN FL88 no-clean), the SAC alloy doesn’t really work nicely with my 350°C iron.

Update 06.02.2009:

Here’s a video on the RoHS subject I found on Dailyduino.com:

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3 Responses to RoHS compliant soldering

  1. Helmut says:

    Hi Robert,
    es geht nicht nur dir so.:-)

    “So langsam krieg ich ne “saubere” Lötstelle hin. Wobei ne saubere Bleifrei Lötstelle so aussieht, wie ne total verhunzte bleihaltige.”

    “ich kauf jetzt für unser Labor auch nen Lebensvorrat bleihaltiges Lötzinn.”

  2. hiroo says:

    Lead free solders don’t shine. They ARE grayish and dull and looks it failed, but they are supposed to be OK. Also, you might want to change the soldering iron to go up to 400C.

  3. robert says:

    Maybe I’ll get me a soldering station for x-mas this year. I had hoped I could use my current soldering iron, the best I’ve ever had.

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