How to Solder Wires without a Soldering Iron

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Soldering is a vital skill. We tend to find ourselves in situations where our ability to modify or repair and electronic device has saved us from having a stressful day.

However, not everyone owns or carries a soldering iron around with them, and even if you did have your soldering iron with you, chances are you don’t have access to electricity. This can be relatively frustrating for most individuals out there.

Fortunately, there are several simple tricks that you can use and solder your wire without a soldering iron or electricity. Therefore, in this article, we shall be discussing how to solder wires without a soldering iron. Some of these projects tend to involve working closely with flame; as a result, you need to take all vital precautions.

Soldering Wires Without A Soldering Iron

When it comes to soldering wires without a soldering iron, you will need to monitor the source of heat or your fire and avoid leaving it an attended; this will help prevent accidents from occurring. Furthermore, you should always keep a responsible adult next to the fire extinguisher, if possible.

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In addition to that, you should make an effort to keep the fire contained and distant from any flammable object. You should as well consider avoiding loose clothes and hair to protect oneself from getting burnt. These tips are vital since some of these procedures tend to involve open flames. 

How To Solder Wire Without A Soldering Iron

Source of heat

The first thing you will require is a reliable source of heat. The best part is that in this section, you have plenty of options that you can use. Always use a heat source capable of heating a piece of metal to your solder’s melting point. In most cases, this is often between 400 degrees Fahrenheit and 700 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Butane lighters tend to be the best source of heat. Nevertheless, you might consider using oil lamps, candles, open campfires, or alcohol burners.

Heating your wire

Connecting two different wires together is one of the easiest types of soldering. You can do this by heating your wire directly, and it will not require any type of soldering iron.

To achieve this, you will take two wires and then get rid of the insulation at the end. Ensure that approximately an inch of metal wire is exposed on each wire. Once that is done, you will twist the wire together very tightly. 

To solder these wires together, you will have to heat the ends of these wires and then apply your solder to the opposite side of where the wires are exposed. Avoid applying your solder directly on the heated area since there will be a build-up of soot and other chemical residues, which will make it relatively challenging for the solder to stick properly.

Therefore, you should take the source of heat and heat the end of your wires using it. Once this is done, you will have to wait for approximately 20 sec. For your wire to heat up and then you will slowly start applying your solder to the end of the exposed wire.

The solder will start melting; however, you will have to let your wire to heat some more if not. Since you want your wire to be hot enough to melt your solder, you will need to be patient during this process if you find it taking long. Otherwise, you might end up having a cold solder joint.

When you have the best solder connection you wanted, cut off the section of your exposed wire that is unsoldered. Once you do this, you will be left with a soldered connection. It is always a wise idea to insulate all connections using a tape or a heat shrink tube. 

Using scrap metal for soldering

Scrap metal can act as a soldering iron; this is vital when soldering on a circuit board since you cannot heat the board with an open flame directly. Therefore, you will need to use a suitable metal piece that will act as a soldering iron.

Steel is considered the best materials for use since it is strong, readily available, and retain heat perfectly. You might as well use copper; however, it tends to cool off very fast compared to steel. This means that when working with copper, you will need to work pretty fast.

Creating soldering iron to use with a relatively small source of heat

When working with heat sources such as candles and lighters, you should consider using a small soldering iron. Usually, a 14 gauge steel wire is the ideal material for use in such a situation.

Since it is relatively small, it tends to heat up very fast; however, when using a larger material as a soldering iron, it will end up retaining heat for an extended period making it relatively challenging to work with.

In addition to that, 14 gauge steel wire is relatively easy to bend into any shape that will be convenient to work with. However, if you cannot access any steel wire, you might as well consider using screwdrivers and nails of the right size. 

Bend your wire over since it will double the thickness of a soldering tip effectively. Once that is done, you will bend the wire to a 90-degree angle. The L-shape makes it relatively easy to have flame go under it. 

Usually, you will have to hold your soldering tool separate from the source of heat. However, in stick lighter cases, attaching the wire to the lighter’s end it relatively easy. You will have your wire wrapped in the neck of a lighter and then position your solder’s tip over the source of heat. 

With a soldering tool, you will need to heat the section of metal, which is approximately ½ inch from its end. By doing so, you will leave the tip of your soldering tool free from chemical residues or oxidation.

Final Thoughts

You don’t have to be frustrated whenever you want to solder wires without a soldering iron. By following the above-discussed tricks, soldering without a soldering iron becomes relatively easy. However, it would be best if you had safety as your top priority. As we conclude, we hope that you have found this article helpful. 

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