finger protection for soldering

Go To Last Post
26 posts / 0 new
Author
Message
#1
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Hi,

I do alot of soldering, I am looking for some way to protect my finger tips from the lead in the solder. Gloves are not an option as they restrict freedom of movement too much. Only my thumb and pointer finger tips touch the solder, so maybe some kind of flexible tape or liquid latex perhaps?

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

There are assorted "liquid glove" products that might help. (or smear your fingers with white glue!)
"finger cots" are like single-finger gloves...

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Use lead free solder.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Quote:
Use lead free solder.

+1
But don't buy it to cheap

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

On topic: I have used a thin layer of superglue in the past. However, have never really examined the absorptive properties of said superglue. If you're worried about fumes, make sure you have a good fan w/ carbon filter to get rid of nasty flux byproducts.

Kartman wrote:
Use lead free solder.

Off topic:

Only if you are ok with potential shorts caused by whiskers to result in catastrophic faults.

Fun scenario: board powered by lithium batteries w/ no safety current clamp. Tin whiskers short out the Vcc/Gnd connection, resulting in a current surge limited only by the battery internal resistance. Rapid swelling of the cell enclosure is quickly followed by an explosive release, spraying molten lithium on everything in a two foot radius.

Forget that mixed boards that have some rohs compliant parts and some non-rohs compliant parts will likely have problems no matter what type of solder that you use.

Given the increasing difficulty obtaining non-RoHS compliant parts, safety critical systems (inc. everything in aerospace electronics) should continue to increase in cost. Of course, more expensive avionics/FADECs result in more expensive aircraft, which results in either A, aircraft operators attempting to stretch the lifetime of said electronics (which, ironically spirals back on increasing MTBF requirements, which also increases avionics costs) or B, increasing airfares to pay for increased capital expenditures resultant from the more expensive air craft.

Higher airfare: reason number 2189204183 to hate RoHS.

/rant.

Science is not consensus. Science is numbers.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Pliers. Keep the fingers away from the solder with pliers. Or, tweezers. There are a lot of really useful tweezer shapes, I find this shape really good. Some have really fine tips and some have heavier tips.

Jim

Attachment(s): 

 

Until Black Lives Matter, we do not have "All Lives Matter"!

 

 

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

hobbss wrote:
On topic: I have used a thin layer of superglue in the past. However, have never really examined the absorptive properties of said superglue. If you're worried about fumes, make sure you have a good fan w/ carbon filter to get rid of nasty flux byproducts.

It'd be ironic if the superglue absorbed into one's skin and caused more health effects than the feared lead. As you say, flux fumes in the air should be one's biggest concern when soldering.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

It depends but :
perhaps use solder paste (and still use a solder iron).

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

I was going to respond earlier but decided not to. I will throw my 2 cents in now. IMHO your best defense from this terrible stuff is good hygiene, ventilation and (un)common sense. I do lead bullet casting and have used lead bearing solder for nearly 50 years. held it in my teeth when I needed a 3rd hand (not any more). Tested for lead levels not too long ago and things are fine. From what I understand lead oxide and fumes from excessively heated lead are what you need to worry about.

As with most things now days, I think some of these "dangers"are greatly exaggerated. Yes, if I had small children and peeling lead based paint I would have it removed.

Roger

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

hehe The Boy Scout electronics merit badge book even suggested holding the solder in your teeth if you needed a third hand. Dad's worry about this suggestion was the potential of electric shock, not exposure to lead.

Relax. Lead is not all that toxic. You don't want to be chewing on it, but you don't need to worry about it. Here's a real shocker: Neither is mercury. Don't drink it and don't keep open bowls of it around, but you don't need to fear the mercury in a florescent light. Follow your mom's advice and wash your hands before you eat and you'll be fine.

Grew up playing with solder and lead. Ut oh. You might turn out like me? Ok, be VERY afraid

If you don't know my whole story, keep your mouth shut.

If you know my whole story, you're an accomplice. Keep your mouth shut. 

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

I have yet to encounter lead free solder that, for hand soldering, actually works.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Letting the smoke out since 1978

 

 

 

 

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

I've this lead free solder to be good:
Sn100c from nihon superior

Gives a bright, shiny finish like lead. You still need more temperature and it solidifies quicker.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

I have had many rants against RoHS here. While I in in no way object to the goal of the legislation, I have major issues with the methods.

I have yet to see a single study that actually shows that discarded electronics definitively cause a significant increase of lead content in ground water. The story makes sense, and sounds plausible, so many legislators, who have no concept of the "scientific method" rush to create popular laws and regulations that do not achieve the stated objective (i.e., reducing lead in ground water), if stated objective is even necessary. The proposed "solution" has many drawbacks, such as the proliferation of failures caused by tin whiskers, and perhaps more importantly, the proliferation in solder reflow profiles required of assembly houses. I feel the regulations were rushed before full ramifications were considered. The process of finding the best alloy, the best board finish, and best reflow profiles is still ongoing. It makes me nervous to think that the computer in my car was assembled by an experimental process.

For personal/hobby use, lead free solder is probably fine. In fact, hand soldering in general, unless performed by a properly trained/certified technician, places a lot of stress on components. I can't count how many times I've seen engineers (who should know better), crank their iron up to 750degrees Fahrenheit and hold the iron tip on the lead for a good 45 seconds just so they can solder that DPAK tab more easily (since when they designed the board they forgot to include proper thermal reliefs!).

For production use, it is critical to make sure that all components on the board are RoHS compliant to ensure good wetting of the leads. The proper finish also needs to be used. Care needs to be taken to ensure that all components can endure the higher temperatures required to reflow the lead-free solder. This is a hidden danger that can mysteriously decrease PCA yield (i.e., percentages of boards fail due to chip failure from elevated temperature stresses in the oven).

Science is not consensus. Science is numbers.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Definitely stick with leaded solder.

I sometimes wrap a couple fingers in Kapton tape when I'm going to be holding hot things. It's thin enough that you maintain good dexterity, but insulating enough that things can get quite hot without you being uncomfortable. Maybe that would give you some peace of mind?

But really, as many have said, just using leaded solder and washing your hands after use should be safe.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

hobbss wrote:
For personal/hobby use, lead free solder is probably fine. In fact, hand soldering in general, unless performed by a properly trained/certified technician, places a lot of stress on components.
Wasn't aware of "purple plague" until recently.
Apparently one can be re-trained on how to do lead-free rework.
Soldering Practices Are Insane by Max Maxfield (EE Times, Programmable Logic, 8/26/2013)
Soldering Heat Damage (Electronics Manufacturing Sciences, Inc.)
About Lead-Free Solder (Electronics Manufacturing Sciences, Inc.)

"Dare to be naïve." - Buckminster Fuller

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Ok. You've convinced me that I learned to solder using mideval techniques. What does it cost to learn to do it right?

From reading these, it would appear that my Frypan at just over 400F isn't that bad an option.

I always figured for production, I'd have an assembly house do it 'cause I'd get bored slobbering hundreds of things together.

If you don't know my whole story, keep your mouth shut.

If you know my whole story, you're an accomplice. Keep your mouth shut. 

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Well, you don't go to their web site and ask:

Quote:

Hello, Tom

Thank you for your interest in Science of Soldering.

I'm happy that we convinced you that the old ways of soldering are no longer valid.

I presume from your inquiry that you are asking on behalf of yourself rather than a company. If that's the case, it will be difficult to teach you. We only work with groups of people from the same company.

Occasionally we have clients that don't mind having an outsider participate in their class. If you are interested, I could keep your name handy and let you know if an opportunity does come up. Unfortunately, it will almost certainly involve travel.

Please let me know if any of this would be helpful.

Thanks again for your interest.

Best wishes,

Jim

If you don't know my whole story, keep your mouth shut.

If you know my whole story, you're an accomplice. Keep your mouth shut. 

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

I personally would be more afraid of fume inhalation, but you could perhaps use examination gloves. I know there are finger gloves made of latex. have seen them here in a special dentist shop, perhaps you could try to get a hand on those....
I assume you do not use solder paste for soldering right? then full examination gloves are much saver then just 2 fingers covered..

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Torby wrote:
Ok. You've convinced me that I learned to solder using mideval techniques. What does it cost to learn to do it right?
Thanks for doing the inquiry with them; sorry for no joy.
Might be able to pool with a hacker space or such.
Otherwise looks like some trial and error (flux corrosion testing, etc.).
Maybe drag soldering is less stressful on components.
Torby wrote:
From reading these, it would appear that my Frypan at just over 400F isn't that bad an option.
May want to turn it down to 100C (use it has a PCB pre-heater) then try various hot air rework tools and heat guns.
Trial fluxes (paste, BGA, etc.)
Some part data sheets state reflow soldering only; an example is Littelfuse PulseGuard ESD Suppressors PGB2 Datasheet (bottom of page 3 at Notes).
Torby wrote:
I always figured for production, I'd have an assembly house do it 'cause I'd get bored slobbering hundreds of things together.
Likely can do low rate production yourself.
Some small businesses get their own pick-and-place machine.

"Dare to be naïve." - Buckminster Fuller

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

You don't understand how easily I get bored

If you don't know my whole story, keep your mouth shut.

If you know my whole story, you're an accomplice. Keep your mouth shut. 

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Life is dangerous.

Wagner Lipnharski
Orlando Florida USA

Last Edited: Sun. Apr 7, 2019 - 03:48 AM
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

wagnerlip wrote:
Life is dangerous.

And you drag up a 6 year old thread for that?

 

Somewhere halfway I found a reference to smearing superglue on your fingers.

Cyanacrylate is biocompatible. It has even be used in wounds to glue them closed. The "industrial" variant may have some chemical residues of the production process in it though.

Doing magic with a USD 7 Logic Analyser: https://www.avrfreaks.net/comment/2421756#comment-2421756

Bunch of old projects with AVR's: http://www.hoevendesign.com

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Paulvdh wrote:
It has even be used in wounds to glue them closed.
That is actually what it was first used for:

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Coover#Superglue

 

 cyanoacrylates, a material that was used during both World Wars (1914-1918; 1939-1945) as an alternative to stitches on large cuts and wounds,[citation needed] 

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Total votes: 0

Metallic lead cannot really be absorbed through the skin, so it's not really dangerous to handle leaded solder wire. However, it is known that some organic lead salts might be absorbed.

The problem I see, is that, since fluxes usually contain organic acids, the residue of flux reaction with solder will contain lead in an organic salt form, that can be absorbed through the skin. So don't touch the stuff.

 

Another question is, can lead compounds able to go through the skin, really be stopped by a thin layer of cyanoacrylate polymer? Maybe, maybe not.