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Old 02-13-2011, 11:05 AM   #31
robsmoto's Avatar
Joined: Jul 2001
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Oddometer: 335
Oak, an airhead guru, highly recommended the American Beauty soldering iron. I obtained one and it is quite nice, but a little more pricey than the Radio Shack units. I've also been able to get continued service from my old Radio Shack soldering iron by making certain to keep the tip clean.

Once in a while I'll put the tip in a drill chuck and spin it against a bastard file to return it to a conical shape. Then I clean the threaded end of the tip (wire wheel in drill) and use a bit of anti-seize on the threads. I replace the tip in the soldering iron. When the tip heats up the anti-seize smokes a bit at first, but there seems to be much better thermal conductivity to the tip. I coat the tip with flux and solder before use. I keep a damp sponge handy to remove excess solder from the tip.

I like the suggestions given herein about joining wires.

For some recent installations of lights on my bikes I've taken to using Posilock connectors. These work very nicely and are quick and easy to use. Links that may be of interest follow -
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Old 02-13-2011, 11:17 AM   #32
Beastly Adventurer
Joined: Sep 2007
Location: Elmdale, Kansas, USA
Oddometer: 1,104
Originally Posted by NorCalTA View Post
Ancor Marine Adhesive Lined Heat Shrink and Terminal Connectors are great stuff - been using their products for years on Saltwater Fishing Boats and they definitely keep corrosion from getting into connections.

Ancor has good stuff. Its the only brand I would use for all my wiring needs when rewiring boats, and it'll be the only brand I'll use on the bike if I ever need to rewire.
'93 R100R
'02 F650GS sold)
'93 R100GSPD(sold)
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Old 02-13-2011, 12:02 PM   #33
Bill Harris
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Joined: Sep 2008
Location: backwoods Alabama
Oddometer: 8,521
Good info. A couple things I might add or elaborate upon:

When you are soldering several wires in a harness, stagger the soldered ends and heatshrinks-- nicer than making one big lump.

The proper way is to apply heat to the wire joint with the iron and apply solder to the heated joint. But I like to keep a little fresh molten solder on the iron tip, the "wet" solder seems to conduct heat to the joint better. And yes, always keep the iron tip brighly tinned.
'73 R60/5 Toaster
Luddite. Not just a philosophy, a way of life...
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