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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Soldering large diameter fittings. I'm old school. I don't see where it makes any diff where the solder is applied as long as the heat is applied everywhere you want solder.

I'm top, then one side ,then other side ,and then bottom. I see guys do it the new way and struggle. As well as putting more solder on the floor than in the joint.

Am I alone in the stone age? The copper development assoc came up with the bottom up method I think. I don't care for it.
 

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Soldering large diameter fittings. I'm old school. I don't see where it makes any diff where the solder is applied as long as the heat is applied everywhere you want solder.

I'm top, then one side ,then other side ,and then bottom. I see guys do it the new way and struggle. As well as putting more solder on the floor than in the joint.

Am I alone in the stone age? The copper development assoc came up with the bottom up method I think. I don't care for it.
Their theory is sound, heat rises, heating the bottom of the fitting prepares the top of the fitting more rapidly, and makes for faster production. This is especially true if you are brazing the joints as opposed to soldering them.
 

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I as a weldor do the bottom up deal because once the bottom is hot enough to solder then the rising heat usually is sufficiant for the top. Plus if you start at the top and go down, the solder on top gets hot and wants to run down.

Just my .02
 

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Thanks KTS, I stand corrected and corrected said mistake!

I dont weld much anymore as I fell from a 2 story house and broke both my wrists. I just dont have the controll over them as I used to.
 

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I never really thought about the physics of it, I just tried doing it every which way. I do top, bottom, then the side it's just the way that works best for me. This is one of those things where it's just whatever works the best for you. So long as it looks good and doesn't leak who cares how you got it done.
 

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Actually now that I think about it a benifit of doing the top first is that heating up the bottom a little without putting any solder in it gives the flux a chance to run out. Once the flux runs out I wipe up whatever has run down the pipe. This helps keep the solder from running down the pipe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
There are definitely 2 distinct camps in soldering methods.
Bout like the lowfat / low carb camps:)
 

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I prefer the top to go up and the bottom to go down. Provides better access.






Oh wait, you were talking about copper fittings, not lingerie? Sorry, my bad.

On a large fitting I start at the bottom. On small I always start at the top. Keeps the bottom pipe from heating up so much which keeps the solder from running down the pipe as much.
 

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On larger pipe I heat the joint evenly and apply the solder to the top.
Appling heat to the bottom and letting it rise to the top can cause the flux to burn up and over heat the bottom with a week spot in the joint.
Heat control is the key to soldering any size pipe.
Apprentices these days have in there mind the hotter the better, but that is not true.
My apprentices use a regular torch tip for all soldering, no turbo torches,
of course the tip size depends on the size of pipe.
This gives them more control over the process, and it is faster then them overheating the joint and have to take apart and start over.
BTW I also only use a regular torch tip.
 

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On larger pipe I heat the joint evenly and apply the solder to the top.
Appling heat to the bottom and letting it rise to the top can cause the flux to burn up and over heat the bottom with a week spot in the joint.
Heat control is the key to soldering any size pipe.
Apprentices these days have in there mind the hotter the better, but that is not true.
My apprentices use a regular torch tip for all soldering, no turbo torches,
of course the tip size depends on the size of pipe.
This gives them more control over the process, and it is faster then them overheating the joint and have to take apart and start over.
BTW I also only use a regular torch tip.
Ditto
 

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I never knew their were regular torch tips, turbo torch tips are the only ones I have ever seen. You can easily solder with an oversize tip, you just have to hold the flame back and watch your heat. I got pretty good at it when their were a couple months where we only had the largest size turbo torch tips. All the other tips were shot and they refused to spend the money on new ones. They finally did when we were burning through 2 B tanks a week running big tips all day.
 

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You can pull solder up between two pipes about 18 feet. It doesn't matter where you start as far as heat is concerned. However, I find that there are other reasons for starting at one point or another.

Flux with zinc oxide will blacken and run down into molten solder and cause a leak. Flux like La-Co Regular will not. With La-Co, I start at the bottom. With the other, I start at the top. That's been my experience anyway.

With large fittings, you heat where you want to pull the solder. Start at one point and work your way around the pipe.

But conducting heat through copper is not the same as conduction through air. The reason heat rises is because the warmer air molecules will rise and displace the cooler ones. It's two completely different conditions. Heat doesn't "rise" in copper. It conducts from whatever point you're heating.
 

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I never knew their were regular torch tips, turbo torch tips are the only ones I have ever seen. You can easily solder with an oversize tip, you just have to hold the flame back and watch your heat. I got pretty good at it when their were a couple months where we only had the largest size turbo torch tips. All the other tips were shot and they refused to spend the money on new ones. They finally did when we were burning through 2 B tanks a week running big tips all day.

I agree with you, I can solder with any size torch also but that comes with the big E. ( EXPERIENCE ) not something I let an apprentice try.
 

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I have always started at the top it was the way I was taught, but if there is water in the pipe at all I start at the bottom and go up. I dont imagine it makes alot of diffrence if you know what your doing.
 

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T-5 tip, 1/2" copper, 2 sec. joint's hot enough :laughing:

Soldering is an art form. It can not be learned overnight. It takes years of practice and thousands of flux and solder burns until one day, they will call you Master. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
True nhmaster.

I use ta-3 on 1/2 and 3/4
ta-5 on 1" and 1 1/4"
ta-8 on 1 1/2"
ta-12 on 2" and up

If I got the 12 in the torch I'll hit a 1/2" with it. Takes about 1 second:)

I was propane for years and switched to the b tank bout 7 years ago. I'll never go back. Only thing I got that runs off propane is my Jeep:thumbup:
 
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