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Electric Soldering Machine


#1

Hi all,

I received a Pro-Craft soldering machine for Christmas and am
trying to figure out how best to use the beast. I’ve managed to
get decent results on jumprings – this being one of the things
I’ve had difficulty doing with my torch. I don’t like using a
torch next to any kind of spring clasp. I had hoped to use this
machine for tricky repairs such as fine chain, plated or
gold-filled jewelry, etc.; however, the thing came with the most
basic of instructions (ie. “plug in and step on foot control to
turn on”) and I’m not doing very well experimenting on my own.
If anyone out there has been using this or any similar equipment
I’d really appreciate any tips or advice you’d be willing to give
me.

Thanks in advance.

Elaine (MoonStones)


#2

Hi Folks: On one of my garage sale/ estate sale trips I came across
and purchased an electric soldering machine originally sold by
Gesswein. The people at Gesswein were very nice to send the
instructions for the machine but the instructions were were very
basic. Is there anyone who can tell me the best reasons to use the
machine and any tricks or cautions I should use.

A side note: For new people to the craft garage sales and estate sales
are great places to pick up tools at a reduced price. I also feel
that some of the tools still have the spirit of the craftsman who
used them last. And at my stage of the craft I will take all the help
I can get.

Darling by Design
Doug Darling
@DARLING


#3

Doug, I have been using an electric soldering machine for 25
years and have found it invaluable to solder fine wire.

To convert the machine from soldering to tacking you need to make a
set of copper tweezers with a cylindrical base so that you can slide
out the carbon and slide in the tweezers. I would hold the item in
the clamp end and the wire in the tweezers with at setting (for a fine
wire) as low as it will go. Touch the wire to the casting and tap the
pedal. If the wire isn’t exactly where you want it, take it off and
try it again. It takes practice. When I’m re-pronging a diamond
ring, I tack all the prongs on first and then solder them with the
torch. This also works great with platinum and not at all with
silver.

The soldering machine excels at chain and jump ring soldering. With a
sharp and clean carbon tip I solder individual links on the finest
chain (on a fine chain you don’t need solder, just flux and melt the
ends together). You won’t find the place I solder the chain with this
method. But it does take practice and patience.

Joe, who works with Dave