soldering copper gutters

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Old 09-06-02, 10:24 PM
blakes
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soldering copper gutters

If I use a 50 /50 (lead/tin) solder instead of a silver solder will I be able to avoid discoloring the copper since I need less heat? When the metal does discolor from the heat will it eventually blend in as the coppper oxidizes. I only have a torch to use. Any other tips or tricks for soldering copper would be appreciated.
 
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Old 09-07-02, 03:11 PM
S
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Certainly less heat will cause les discoloration, also less distortion. You can buff it back afterwards to match the color again as the change should only be on the surface. I saw that on the tv on this old house or something and they used a soft solder. Silver solder is expensive and would only be used where it was needed for strength or cosmetics such as jewlery or refrigeration piping for example. Maybe someone will come along and give us some more insight on doing gutters.
 
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Old 09-07-02, 04:38 PM
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Re: soldering copper gutters

Originally posted by blakes
If I use a 50 /50 (lead/tin) solder instead of a silver solder will I be able to avoid discoloring the copper since I need less heat? When the metal does discolor from the heat will it eventually blend in as the coppper oxidizes. I only have a torch to use. Any other tips or tricks for soldering copper would be appreciated.
Yo there dont use a torch on the gutters at all. you have to use a soldering iron only not a torch. yes the 50/50 solder and use a cut acid for a flux on the copper ED
 
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Old 09-07-02, 05:32 PM
NutAndBoltKing
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Exclamation Ed's right ...

Ed's right, put away that torch. A good friend of mine is a retired union tin-knocker and has done quite a bit of volunteer work for non-profit organizations dedicated to the restoration of antiquities. He's re-done many different styles and shapes of roofs, re-made old rain gutters, and has even duplicated old sinks - all of copper. He does not use a torch anywhere near the copper itself. He only uses the torch to heat an assortment of hand irons he made. The irons were easily made from scraps of steel and are simple shapes - plain squares, spoons, and triangles and each has an insulated handle. He is carefull to only heat the irons to about 500 degrees because 50/50 melts, I think, at 450 and because he does not want to deform the metal or risk discolorizations.
 
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Old 09-08-02, 10:01 AM
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Re: Ed's right ...

Originally posted by NutAndBoltKing
Ed's right, put away that torch. A good friend of mine is a retired union tin-knocker and has done quite a bit of volunteer work for non-profit organizations dedicated to the restoration of antiquities. He's re-done many different styles and shapes of roofs, re-made old rain gutters, and has even duplicated old sinks - all of copper. He does not use a torch anywhere near the copper itself. He only uses the torch to heat an assortment of hand irons he made. The irons were easily made from scraps of steel and are simple shapes - plain squares, spoons, and triangles and each has an insulated handle. He is carefull to only heat the irons to about 500 degrees because 50/50 melts, I think, at 450 and because he does not want to deform the metal or risk discolorizations.
Ill butt in here again. If you look his soldering IRONS happen to be made out of copper, it holds the heat longer.Dont know how much gutter you are doing.If you want you can get a prest-o-lite set up that has whats called a soldering iron stem. With this it has a copper head with the flame behind it. that way your iron is always hot.
you can make your own flux or buy some for the copper.Lap the gutters about 1 1/2 " and put in copper rivets with a burr on the other side and then solder the seam. For info. Soldering Irons are sold in sets of two, like if you got 3lb. irons each would weigh just 1 1/2 lb each. The largest iron is for roof work and it is called a hatchet iron and looks like one. Wish i had a dime for every ft of gutter i have put up. ED
 
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Old 09-08-02, 09:30 PM
blakes
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Hey this is great info! Thanks. I'll stay away from using the torch directly on the copper. I'm not clear about the irons and how to use them though. I'm only soldering about a dozen end caps half a dozen outlets and two corners.... so not much. I was hoping to use stuff I already had, but it looks like I should look into getting 50/50 solder and a couple of irons.... cheers
 
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Old 08-10-04, 11:31 AM
hippo57
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copper sheet

I know NOTHING about soldering copper. I have some 22 guage copper sheeting and want to make a simple box. What iron/torch do I need? Are rivets necessary? Do you bend and overlap the edges? Are there any manuals for dummies? All advice appreciated. Thanks.
 
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Old 08-18-04, 12:58 PM
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hippo57 First have to say you dont or cant have 22 gauge copper sheet. Could be more like 16 oz copper sheet.
You dont say what are how big this box is that you want to make. So its hard to say how to make it. look at book for just sheet metal work would show you how. The ends a lock seam, rivets or just over lap i tand solder it in??????? you could look at a large electric soldering iron. We say iron but they are made out of copper. Make sure you get the right flux for copper and use 50/50 solder

ED
 
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