I'm kind of surprised there are no stickies about this, but i recently purchased a pwm board for arduino and i need to solder the headers on.
Ive got about ten minutes soldering experience, and it didnt go well. So, im hoping there is a good guide or walkthrough i can use.
Also, i bought a weller pen solderer and .010 solder. Is that right? I dont want to spend a lot of money on a solderer, no more than $50 ideally if my weller wont work.
The first time i tried to solder it seemed like the solder wouldnt flow, but the led strip i was soldering melted? I bought a "helping hands" welders tool, but thing is tiny and doesn't seem convenient...
A 40 Watt iron is fine. However this iron looks quite cheap.
Use the middle sized tip, make sure the screw is tight.
Let it get hot before you start soldering.
If the solder doesn't melt when the iron is up to temperature you may have a bad iron.
I'd have said that 40W is a bit high for this work but it should work OK. Just don't hang around too long when you solder things.
What you need to do is sit down with a piece of PCB and a load of old/cheap components and/or bits of wire a practice soldering them before you start on anything valuable. Ten minutes isn't a lot of practice to be giving up.
Get a better model. Save up some money, get a temperature controlled iron. NOT a power control, temperature control. $100 to $150 will get you a decent soldering station.
I bought this one with a digital readout when I updated from a Weller with fixed temperature tips:
Here is one a little cheaper with a calibrated dial and no digital readout:
Do NOT buy one like these:
Note that those say variable -power-. Waste of money. Our makerspace at OlyMEGA bought 6 of them. In less than a year, 4 of them are nonworking, the other two are working only because they were repaired with parts from the others.
I'm not saying that you can't solder with a simple pencil iron. I used one for decades. But why not use a decent tool? I went through cheap irons every few years, then I bought a good used Weller WTCP and have used it for a couple of decades. It still works, I bought a new digital control iron mostly for lead-free solder.
As for solder, again, don't cheap out. A good name brand 63/37 will have a better rosin. A pound will last you a really long time, why save $5 on poor solder?
Of course a full soldering station would be nicer to have, but it won't magically make soldering any easier!.
A bit of practice with the one you have is all you need.
PS: Use the sharpest tip for soldering. Screwdriver (flat) tips are more for desoldering where you have to touch multiple pins IMHO (YMMV - I know people who solder with them but I personally hate them)