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Author Topic: Interested in homebrewing / kit building but not sure where to start?  (Read 2244 times)
NJ2X
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« on: November 21, 2011, 08:38:32 PM »

Hello Hams,

There are many people that read this forum because they are interested in homebrewing or kit building but not sure where to start.  I posted an article to my website (NJ2X.COM) to help people learn the basics of soldering, "http://www.nj2x.com/2011/11/soldering-101.html".  Hope it helps motivate at least one person to learn this essential builder's skill and build something.

Happy Thanksgiving all.  I am thankful for having passed on the skill of soldering to my oldest who now has the builder's bug.  We are enjoying some great times together in the workshop building stuff.  Awesome!

Michael
NJ2X
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73,

Michael
NJ2X
K8AG
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« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2011, 07:32:54 AM »

Hi Michael,

Many years ago I taught myself the skill of soldering by disassembling a throw-away tv.  It was an old defunct black & white set.  Rather than simply slashing and burning, cutting out parts, I desoldered each and every part.  The parts had longer leads as a result.  But more importantly I learned to solder (and desolder) better than I ever could before.  I went on to a career for nearly 2 decades where soldering and desoldering were daily activities.

I probably have some of thr parts even today.

My 2 cents.

73, JP, K8AG
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AC5UP
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« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2011, 07:43:47 AM »

K8AG is on the right track....... If you have a local thrift shop near you consider stopping by once a week or so. Some will discount shelf orphans down to the point where you can pick up a cosmetically challenged clock radio for a dollar or less, mono VCR's can be had for not much more. Depending on the item you can tear it down for parts, try to fix it, re-package the guts into something more interesting, or just study how it's built and maybe learn a trick or two.

Worst thing that will happen is that you spend a little money, develop a stash of small speakers, transformers, assorted GP transistors, etc. and get handier with a soldering iron.
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K8AXW
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« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2011, 09:18:00 AM »

2X:  You post on soldering is most welcomed.  I suspect there are may hams out there who would like to build something but don't because they don't know how to solder and are too embarrassed to ask 'how.'

Like K8AG I learned soldering by unsoldering.  I must have disassembled a dozen TV sets for parts that I really didn't have any use for at the time.... but did have the dream of getting my ham license.  That dream wasn't fullfilled until many years later by which time the parts had been discarded.

However, it was surprising how much I learned about soldering by unsoldering. 


Good job Michael.  Good answer K8AG.
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NJ2X
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« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2011, 11:56:08 AM »

K8AXW, AC5UP, K8AG,

This is an fascinating thread for me personally.  We now have four of us in a row (data points) that learned soldering by desoldering.  That is exactly how I got my start as a kid.  Perhaps that represents the common pattern for success.  I learned again in college in formal electronics courses / labs.  However, the real skill was already imprinted prior at home.

Thank you all for sharing and establishing a proven way to success - learn to solder by desoldering.  I am going to update my article strengthening it as a pattern for others to follow.

Michael
NJ2X
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Michael
NJ2X
ONAIR
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« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2011, 02:51:42 PM »

  You may want to pick up an old tube type CB radio from the '60s on ebay.  They can often be had for just a few bucks, and you can practice taking them apart and putting them them back together again.  Many hams have even converted some of those old radios into 10 Meter AM rigs!
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AE6ZW
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« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2011, 12:21:05 AM »

nice web site,  I am looking forward to it,  I too learn how to solder by taking things a parts, in Japan they have been separating trash into category for long time.  fortunately, one of the trash BOX category was electronics,  so all I need to do is look in those  BOX just before trash collection dates.   I collected many electronics goods.    when I was kids in late 1970's to 1980's   
since I did not have schematic or service manual, my first job was to write out schematics , other wise trace PCB layout and look at parts datasheets.  those days most of electronics still Transister, and a few IC  so once PCB was traced into schematics I got idea of how it worked.  later on, it gave me skill of layout PCB as well as construction of electronics goods, reverse engineering competitor's good, etc.
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