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Hydroflux instruction


#1

new member, new torch owner.

long time hoke torch user and i would like some info about soldering
with a water torch.

tried to solder a couple test sterling joints, but the solder never
flowed…should i change flux?

i’m using the orangey/pink stuff from rio. borax and alcohol,
perhaps?

tia,
richard


#2

first check tip size you have on the handle - the dark green is i
believe largest. then try paste flux or just mix borax on a stone
with water to a creamy consistency (all caps mistake)- the thicker
flux will prevent paillions blowing off with the air pressure the
torch generates. actually you don’t need flux as it is in the torches
fluid chamber wwhen you set it up. If you have a green flame your
flux is working!

I’m presuming you cleaned the metals to be joined thoroughly as well
as the joint halves, and made sure you had solder not just sterling
or fine silver…other than the flame not being hot enough and the
metals not being clean, there are no sizable differences in soldering
with a water torch than any oxy fuel torch excepting that you must
select the right size tip for each operation. I would also recommend
getting the metal tip set instead of having to toss the plastic
needles virtually after each use- which means keeping an inventory on
hand or just order the sizes you most work with. Admittedly, the main
drawback to the hydroflux welder - not including the manufacturer’s
total lack of support.


#3

I’ve been using a water torch for a number of years now and, although
I also have a Sievert propane torch and a Microflame (rather like a
Little Torch) oxy/propane unit, I use the water torch for almost all
my soldering and annealing work.

I don’t use special flux; I use the same stuff I use with the other
torches. I use a liquid called Auflux (slightly luminous green watery
liquid) for precious metal, and EasyFlo for ferrous metals.

The water torch gives a narrow, intensely hot flame, and I suspect
you are directing it right at the joint rather than waving it around
it. You are thus using the flame to melt the solder directly rather
than using it to heat the area around the joint so that the joint
itself melts the solder.

That’s all I can think of because, like I said earlier, I don’t use
anything special with mine.

Regards, Gary Wooding


#4
new member, new torch owner. long time hoke torch user and i would
like some info about soldering with a water torch. 

Richard, your normal flux will work and as well your normal method
of cleaning the metal before starting to solder. I have used these
torches for years and have taught several jewelers to use them. The
most common problems I have seen is using too small of a tip and not
getting in close enough for proper heating of the metal. Not being
there to watch makes it tough to help but just try a little larger
tip than you are using and move in a little closer. Try on some
scrap a few times. The Hydro torches are a more intense flame than a
regular torch. You can work silver with them almost like you work
Gold with a regular torch… more direct heat in a concentrated
area.

You’ll get the hang of it… just practice some. All your same
solders, fluxes & methods other than the soldering itself should
work.

Good Luck. Dan.


http://www.dearmondtool.com


#5

Richard,

When I was at college I had a go with a hydroflux on sterling, the
problem I was having was not the flux, but that I was using a very
hot, small flame which was not getting the rest of the silver hot in
the same way that a bigger, bushy, les precise flame does. Means
that you do not have the even heat that tidily soldering silver
requires (which is why people get such good results with a cheap
plumber’s blow lamp). Try spending more time getting the main body of
work up to temp before concentrating on the joint.

CP


#6

thanks for all the helpful responses!

i did make additional effort and discovered many of the tips you lot
have provided. making up a batch of boric acid and alcohol for my
surface flux helped quite a bit.

i did examine the flames on several i’ve ordered metal tips [and a
few other things] from otto frei, waiting on confirmation and a ship
notice.

i use a pick to solder with, extensively, and there seems to be a
’heating time’ drawback with using the water torch.

i expect just being a bit more patient and playing the flame is in
order and being more patient…

thanks again!
atb,
richard


#7

One thing I have found is that the accessory tip kit for a Hoke torch
will fit on the head of the water torch. These are all metal and seem
to have a tight fit. Unfortunately I haven’t had time to try them. I
will post the results when I do have time to try them…Teddy


#8

Hi there

I have a hydroflux. Be sure your flame is green, that your flux tank
is full, and distilled water is full. I use Rio green flux or handy
flux for soldering. I did not notice that my flame was discolored,
and discovered that both flux and water were low. Keep a close eye
on them. I don’t know if this will help, but let me know if it does.
I’ve had my hydroflux for about a year and a half now, and just love
it.

Catherine