Say you've got common equipment for soldering copper water pipes. Can ya
solder other metals to copper?
Solder, say, steel u-bolts to copper pipe? Same procedure, clean 'em up,
flux 'em, heat 'em up and apply solder?
Your best bet would be to get the correct brazing rod from a supply
house. The U bolt may have a zinc coating and it may have to be removed
in order to braze the steel to the copper. I have special brazing rods
from the supply house to braze steel service valves to copper pipe that
I use for refrigeration work. Tell the guys at the supply house what
you're trying to do and they can tell you what you need. Of course, you
can always experiment.
You can. The proper question is "why?"
Solder connections per se aren't very strong.
When you solder copper pipe the solder joint tends to be 1/2" of overlap and
the basic copper just isn't a high strength material.
Solder has long been used to help fabricate things made from tin plated
steel. Without a long overlap and crimping these connections are quite
weak compared to, say, spot welded joints.
"Tin roofs" often use a standing seam which can be soldered.
Going back to your initial "problem," it may well make sense to solder a
sheet material (e.g.: copper plated steel) to a copper pipe to make a solid
connection without requiring clamping. But a U bolt would have minimum
contact area and the solder joint just would not have much strength.
Effectively you would be as well off just using clamping force.
But you need the steel CLEAN. NO ZINC.
Solder can be used on steel, copper, brass and several other metals
(including Aluminum, but soldering that stuff is no fun) - and can
solder virtually any two solderable materials to each other.
On Tue, 14 Dec 2010 12:55:17 -0500, email@example.com wrote:
Many thanks to numerous respondents.
I'm starting to get an idea of the details ...
Wire wheel on bench grinder is likely to suffice to remove zinc, etc?
I *think* I've got a little bit of silver solder left from
AC work. Any good for copper/u-bolts??
The question no one has asked is what is the purpose of the joining?
I've never soldered
steel to anything and question how well it could work and how much
strength it would have.
If this is something that has no stress and no consequences, then
it's one thing. But if failure means
water pouring everywhere or 50 lbs falling on your head, then it's
another. I've never seen
a soldered plumbing connection of steel.
Your best bet is to get the brazing rods coated with a special flux.
I mentioned in another post that I use it for joining steel service
valves to copper pipe. The regular 15% silver solder would not work.
Been there done that, already ruined some material. Remember:
"Experience is a fools best teacher." Ralph Waldo Emerson :-)
On 12/14/2010 3:57 PM, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
It's Sil-Fos 15. It doesn't work for that, I tried it for installing the
steel fittings to copper pipe. The brazing rods I used had a blue flux
coating and I would have to call my buddy at the supply house to find
out the name of the darn things. I do a lot of silver solder and brazing
for refrigeration and HVAC.
On Tue, 14 Dec 2010 00:06:17 -0600, Willie The Wimp
Much better to just dip it in muriatic acid. Tinners fluid is muriatic
acid cut with zinc (zinc chloride, I believe)and as it has a "full
load" of zinc, it will not remove the zinc on the bolt - and sice the
tinners fluid is (AFAIR) Zinc chloride, using muriatic acid won't
hurt. Rinse well when finished.
As the other posters have asked, "What are you trying to accomplish by
soldering the copper pipe to the steel U-bolts?"
If you are trying to hang the pipes from something and have water flow
through them, then you are barking up the wrong tree... Soldered
joints are meant to seal things together but not support any kind of
loads or mechanical stresses... Pipes move around (expanding and
contracting) with temperature changes and waterflow (water hammer)...
If you explain how the pipe must be run and where it can be hung
from, we can perhaps suggest a way of hanging it to you which will
be safe and proper...
If this is for some other application where the pipes will not be used
to supply water -- then describe what you are trying to use said pipes
for and we can advise you better to fit your application...
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.