Image above retrieved from Adafruit's Website
Soldering is a semi-permanent way of connecting electrical components. Many tutorials for soldering can be found online, including the following from Adafruit and Sparkfun:
The standard operating procedure for the Prototyping Lab irons is as follows:
- Ensure the soldering iron control box is plugged into the power strip
- Turn on the port connected to the iron handset you wish to use
Note: The FX-889D irons feature two ports with independent power switches. The "A" port will feature a blue plastic ring near the control box as well as on the wire near the iron handset itself to help distinguish which port should be powered
- Set the temperature for the iron according to the needs of your application
Note: Where possible, please avoid going over 750°F as this is likely to damage the iron itself
- Leave the handset in its holder until the iron reaches temperature
- Use clamps and/or helping hands to position your workpieces in a convenient location
- Turn on the fume extraction beneath the workbench and adjust the port to be close to where you will be soldering
- Perform the soldering operation you need and then place the soldering handset back into its holder
- When done soldering, ensure the iron and the power strip are turned off
- Make sure to clean up the area when you are done
- These soldering irons are capable of heating to over 650°F. As such serious burns will occur if used carelessly.
- Consider using one of the benchtop magnifying glasses when soldering small parts, as this will prevent you from having your face close to the hot tip of the soldering iron, reducing the risk of burns.
- Turn off the iron and the power strip whenever it is not going to be in use for more than a few minutes. While the iron will need to heat back up the next time you intend to use it, an unattended iron can quickly lead to a serious fire.
- The solder used in conjunction with these irons often features lead as a main component. It is a good idea to wash your hands after using the soldering irons or any equipment in the same workstation. It is especially important not to have any food or drink on the same workbench, as lead contamination is easy in this area.
- Always use fume extraction when soldering. The lead in solder, as well as the flux used to help adhesion to soldered components, can release fumes during the soldering process of which inhalation is best avoided.