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  • Different copper pipe Solder

    I know there are different copper pipe solders. There are 50/50/, 60/40, etc. What do they mean.

    For soldering 1/2, 3/4 inch pipe.

  • #2
    The number refers to the mix (in percent) of components that form the particular solder. 50/50 being 50% Tin and 50% lead.

    For domestic water service you do not want to use solder containing lead, AFAIK it has not been allowed by law for over 20 years.
    Use 95/5 lead free solder.
    95% Tin/5% Antimony
    Melting point: ~`460°F


    Tin melts at 450 degrees F, and lead melts at 621 degrees F. When the two are combined however, the melting point can be as low as 361 degrees F. The following illustrates the melting points of the various alloys.
    MELTING POINT
    0% TIN 100% LEAD -- 621 Degrees F MELTING POINT
    10% TIN 90% LEAD -- 572 Degrees F MELTING POINT
    30% TIN 70% LEAD -- 496 Degrees F MELTING POINT
    40% TIN 60% LEAD -- 460 Degrees F MELTING POINT
    50% TIN 50% LEAD -- 421 Degrees F MELTING POINT
    60% TIN 40% LEAD -- 375 Degrees F MELTING POINT
    63% TIN 37% LEAD -- 361* Degrees F MELTING POINT
    *Lowest possible melting point of the alloy.

    For pipe work you'll want solid solder (no flux core), and use a paste flux, NOKORODE® is my favorite, there are many others.

    [ 02-14-2005, 05:52 PM: Message edited by: Bob D. ]

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    • #3
      Bob D. said it all very well. There are different brands of 95/5 also. If you have access to Taramet solder it flows better than the others making it much easier to use, at least IMHO.

      Be sure to use a lead free solder paste, again Bob D. is correct when he reccommended NOKORODE.
      Work hard, Play hard, Sleep easy.

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      • #4
        DON'T KNOW ABOUT YOUR STATE, BUT IN CALIFORNIA WE HAVE TO USE A LEAD FREE SOLDER AND WATER SOLUIBLE FLUX. NOKORODE WAS A GREAT FLUX YEARS AGO, BUT IT'S NOT WHAT IT USE TO BE AS A WATER SOLUIBLE FLUX. THE BEST I'VE FOUND IS EVERFLUX. AS FAR AS SOLDER GOES IT TOO HAS TO BE LEAD FREE. BRIDGIT SEAMS TO WORK GOOD. IT HAS A LARGER PASTY RANGE. (THE MARGIN OF HEAT THAT THE SOLDER IS NEITHER A SOLID OR A LIQUID). SILVERBRIGHT IS ALSO GOOD.

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