Not a properly soldered joint, no.
Poorly soldered joints, yes, I've done it several times -- one of the previous
owners of this house (or someone he hired) wasn't nearly as skilled with a
torch as he thought he was. Some of his joints that I've taken apart had
hardly any solder inside them at all.
Yes. It can happen rather easily but is generally unusual if the soldering
was properly accomplished. It can happen more easily if the deflection were
done multiple times, looking for the "best way" and things like that. I'd
try to avoid it though: even the experts miss getting a perfect solder every
Newsgroups are great places to get assistance.
With a properly "sweated" joint you will NEVER break it. If the solder
job is just a "glue job" with a cold bead run around the end of the
outer peice, you may not even need to look at it the wrong way to have
I've never seen an "expert" screw up a solder joint on new copper with
leaded solder. The new lead free crap is a different story!
I also have a difficult time with the lead free solder. Not saying this
is right or wrong, but a couple times I used leaded solder to tin the
joints and knocked/wiped any extra out of the fitting. Then sweated the
joint with the lead free solder and it goes easy. Not much of a big
deal since it was in a house from the 60's and all the other joints were
with lead bearing solder anyway.
On Thu, 04 Feb 2010 19:48:34 GMT, email@example.com (Doug Miller)
Hey, I'll agree mapp is better than propane, but I'll still choose
to dissagree about the leadfree solder. Even with an acetylene torch
leadfee solder is NASTY compared to good old leaded solder and
soldering paste. And an acetlene torch is even hotter than MAPP. I
generally use MAPP with a high-swirl bernzomatic.
I don't have a MAPP torch, only a propane torch with MAPP gas.
I suppose it's hotter than propane, but I can't tell how much.
They didnt' sell simple MAPP torches, only those with built in
piezo-electric lighters, so I wouldn't buy one. Maybe I'll get one
used some day.
Years ago, I worked with a plumber who used acetylene torch
with tank, and hose. He was forever looking for his sparker
lighter. Finally another fellow asked him to try the piezo
start mapp. The plumber said yes, that is far more
convenient. And went on using the torch with the hose and
the sparker that went missing every time.
That is the "high swirl" or "turbo-torch.
Excellent torch. But an acetylene torch is still hotter.
The acetylene torch is also heavy, clumsy, and dirty untiull you get
it going right - I use my Mapp TurboTorch for virtually all plumbing.
Well yes the acetylene is hotter, but we aren't smelting the joints
together! Just soldering.
On the subject of plumbing, I recall years ago a long thread about
stuffing white bread in a pipe to keep dripping water out of the way. I
saw some commercially made stuff that does the same thing. Has anyone
tried it? (I saw it at Lows) I think it may be something similar to
the corn starch based shipping "peanuts" that disolve in water.
I did it with the bread. I had to buy a whole loaf because I don't
eat bread. But the bread was good to eat and it worked well in my
pipes and water heater.
There wasn't much water coming out of my pipes, but I think it could
have soaked up quite a bit.
Why buy this stuff if bread works well? (well, maybe because it would
soak up even more water, but you could also suff more bread in.) I
wouldn't use pumpernickel. Just soft white bread with very soft
crust. Wonder bread type stuff. And the bread I had was fresh and
springy. I was taking no chances. :)
It's been many years since I've needed to sweat any joints but I'll try
Mapp next time. To make things worse, my old Berzomatic torch developed
a leak I couldn't fix and the newer low end torches are much smaller
with less heat output than the old ones, (although I haven't used the
new small one for sweating a fitting). I have a Mapp torch and gas and
it gets hot, I've used it to solder a stainless steel sink, which I
didn't know could be done. Lot's of heat, the right flux, and silver
solder. Normal flux will burn and be useless before the SS is hot
enough. I have also found that using the Mapp torch with propane will
give off a lot more heat than even the old torches.
Home Depot has a mapp gas torch kit (includes the first
bottle of Mapp) for about $40. By Bernzomatic. Really good
Can also burn propane, though slightly less hot.
If you wire it up properly, so the flame is pointing in a
safe direction. The HD mapp torch can help warm the interior
of a panel van with broken heater fan. Though, I'd never
suggest anyone do that.
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