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Soldering Wires onto Pots

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peesho
(@peesho)
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Joined: 14 years ago
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Topic starter  

Hi,
Ive been watching video's on how to solder and wire guitar pickups and have a few questions i'd like to clarify.

1) When soldering is tinning all the wires before soldering good practice?

2) When soldering wires, most video's said you need a mechanical connection between the wire and component, so how do we make a mechanical connection between the back of a pot we need to solder the wire too, and is it necessary to tin the back of the pot before soldering the wires?

3) To clean wires is it a good idea to dip them in flux?

Thanks!


   
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greybeard
(@greybeard)
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Joined: 20 years ago
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1) Yes. Firstly, it shows that the wire is clean and ready to solder. Secondly, it shortens the time that the iron has to be in contact with the two pieces to be soldered. This can avoid components being damaged by the heat. When soldering electrical components, it's good to use a heat sink, to draw heat away.

2) Tin the back of the pot, first. It ensures that the pot is able to take a solder joint and prepares the pot for the connection.

3) It depends. If I just tin the wire, I don't dip it in flux (usually this is for solid core wire). If I'm going to twist the wire (when I'm using multi-strand wire), I usually dip wire in flux, heat the wire/flux with the iron (without any solder) and flick any excess hot flux off (or wipe it with a tissue), then tin it. Twisting the wire puts dirt and grease from your fingers onto the wire, which will make soldering more difficult.

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
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peesho
(@peesho)
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Thank you Mr. Grey Beard that was alot of help!


   
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greybeard
(@greybeard)
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You're more than welcome.

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
Greybeard's Pages
My Articles & Reviews on GN


   
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bdkauff
(@bdkauff)
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Joined: 16 years ago
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I have a bit of a related question:

First off, some semantic questions:
Is a pot the same as a "lug"? Is the lug part of the pot?
Also, is the "ear" of the pot the little thingys protruding off the sides of the pot, where the wires are connected?

OK, onto the real question: How exactly are the wires connected to the pots? From the pics and videos I've seen, it seems like the wire is simply laid on top of the pot "ear" and then soldered...You don't need to wind the wire around the ear or anything? The solder holds the wire on there?


   
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greybeard
(@greybeard)
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Is a pot the same as a "lug"? Is the lug part of the pot?
Also, is the "ear" of the pot the little thingys protruding off the sides of the pot, where the wires are connected?
The whole object is the "pot", which is short for potentiometer. Most pots have three connections, which meet the outside world in the form of lugs, ears or "the little thingys protruding off the sides of the pot", if you prefer.
How exactly are the wires connected to the pots? From the pics and videos I've seen, it seems like the wire is simply laid on top of the pot "ear" and then soldered...You don't need to wind the wire around the ear or anything? The solder holds the wire on there?
Yes, you just lay the wire on top of the lug and solder it. Most connectors are drilled, so you can put the wire through, bring it back to the incoming wire and make a twist. I've only ever made use of that when the connector is in a difficult position and I'd need three hands to make the connection - sometimes you need to move other components out of the way and hold them there.

To make the connection work efficiently, though, both the lug and the wire have to be cleaned and tinned beforehand.

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
Greybeard's Pages
My Articles & Reviews on GN


   
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bdkauff
(@bdkauff)
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Thanks greybeard! So lugs and ears are the same thing?


   
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quarterfront
(@quarterfront)
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Joined: 18 years ago
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..You don't need to wind the wire around the ear or anything? The solder holds the wire on there?
I like to slip the end of the wire through the eyelet on the lug so that it's held in place by friction while I work on it.

But you're better off not winding the wire around the lug, cause later when you decide that you really want to try a different pot or put a tone capacitor in the circuit or swap the pickup out or try a different kind of selector switch or rewire it so that the tone control acts as a blender pot or whatever other thing you get into your fool head, it will be a lot easier to remove the wire.

Trust me on this, I speak from experience. :oops:


   
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bdkauff
(@bdkauff)
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Great, thanks for the help!


   
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