The Physics
Factbook
An encyclopedia of scientific essays

Temperature of a Soldering Iron

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Cary, Howard. Modern Welding Technology.Columbus, OH: Prentice Hall, 1998: 220-221. "Soldering is a group of welding processes that produce coalescence of material by heating them to the soldering temperature and by using a filler metal having a liquids hot exceeding 840 °F (450 °C) and below the solids at the base metals." 450 °C
"Soldering." McGraw Hill Encyclopedia of Science and Technology, 8th Edition. New York: McGraw Hill, 1997: 689. "A solder is defined as a joining material that melts below 800 °F (427 °C); brazing alloys melt above this temperature." 427 °C
Introduction to Soldering. irational.org. 1998. "Solder melts at around 190 degrees centigrade, and the bit reaches a temperature of over 250 degrees centigrade." > 250 °C
An Introduction to Working with Metal. New York: Drake, 1978: 4-5. "remember, soldering and brazing both require a melting point over 800 °C." 427 °C
Integrated Publishing. Soldering Process. "Maintain the temperature of the solder bath (pot) between 450 and 500 °F. This keeps the solder in liquid state." 232–260 °C

Soldering is a term used to refer to the joining of metals by fusion of alloys which have relatively low melting points, around 450 degrees Celsius. It is like gluing with molten metal. This purpose of soldering is to establish electrical connections, to physically hold parts together, and to make liquid or gas-tight joints.

Soldering is a process that requires a lot of skill and patience. It is a very delicate process and requires you to be careful because the iron and the solder get to be very hot that can instantly burn you.

Soldering requires two main things: a soldering iron and solder. A soldering iron is the heat source used to melt solder. Irons used are usually 15 to 30 watts and would need to get hotter than 450 degrees Celsius to melt the solder. Lead and tin are usually the alloys used for soldering.

The part of the soldering iron that is heated and transfers the heat and the solder to the joint is usually made of copper. This part is called the bit. The bit may be heated in many different ways. It can be electrically heated by internal resistance coil, and it can be heated in a flame.

Lillian Dvirts -- 2003

External references to this page:

Know How… is an internet television show and video podcast that airs Thursdays at 3:00 PM Pacific Time on the TWiT network. In Episode 7 (16 August 2012), cohost Iyaz Akhtar gave a quick lesson on how to solder electronic components. Cohost Leo Laporte wanted to know the temperature of a soldering iron so he consulted The Physics Factbook.