Jump to content
joeatari1

learning to solder

Recommended Posts

Just learning how to solder and thought I would give my INTV a cap refresh.  Here is the power supply.  Let me know what you think.

20200820_222137.thumb.jpg.0021d7414f7d190791f527e02bc617d3.jpg20200820_222153.thumb.jpg.4dc4887abb8f43ad6364993f07f58801.jpg

Any suggestions are welcome and if someone could please give advice on how to take apart the RF shield, that would be great.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok, so I'm looking to take apart the RF shielding this weekend.  How do I do this without damaging the board inside?  I want to preserve the shield so I can re use it.  Do I just use lots of heat?  Solder wick or solder sucker?  Or do I have to cut it apart?  I have a rework station with hot air gun and warming tray.   Or should I just use a large tip?  Any advice is appreciated.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, joeatari1 said:

Ok, so I'm looking to take apart the RF shielding this weekend.  How do I do this without damaging the board inside?  I want to preserve the shield so I can re use it.  Do I just use lots of heat?  Solder wick or solder sucker?  Or do I have to cut it apart?  I have a rework station with hot air gun and warming tray.   Or should I just use a large tip?  Any advice is appreciated.

You definitely don't need to cut it apart.  I use the Hakko FR-301 Desoldering Tool (aka Desoldering Gun).  https://www.hakko.com/english/products/hakko_fr301.html

 

Depending on your rework station, that will probably do the job.  However, I don't know if a warming tray is a good idea since there are a handful of plastic parts on the board (ex: the channel 3 vs 4 selector).

 

However, this is probably overkill for your needs.  Just use a moderate to large tip soldering iron with either a solder wick or a solder sucker.  Also have a "pry tool" handy (i.e. a flat head screwdriver).  Starting with the big half of the shield, go to each tab, heat it with the soldering iron, remove as much solder as you can, and use the pry tool to gently keep the tab away until its solder cools and re-solidifies.  Once the solder cools, you remove the pry tool and repeat this process for each tab.  You don't need to pry very hard.  The trickier part is removing the big metal shield from the through-hole pins near the edge-card connector, but it isn't too bad.  Repeat this process for the thinner shield but only if you need access to the bottom side of the circuit board.  One tricky spot is the tab next to the RF modulator / connector only because its trickier to get your tools into the spot.

 

Overall, I find the Intellivision to be fairly durable, probably because the traces are thick.

 

Happy soldering!

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Lathe26 said:

Overall, I find the Intellivision to be fairly durable, probably because the traces are thick.

 

That is why I am working on this first.  I figured the heartier the board and traces, the more forgiving of errors it will be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Lathe26 pretty much nailed the process. I do use my desoldering gun, but it is also just as easy to just use a flatblade to pry up each tab as I heat it up with solder. But you will pretty much need solder wick or the gun to easily remove the solder around the center ground points on the cartridge connector. And if you are wanting to recap the whole thing, then you will need to remove both halves of the RF shielding. 

 

When putting it back together, you don't really 'have' to solder each tab back down either so you can make it easier for yourself in the future by just tacking down a tab on each side at that point. In the case of my personal Intelly, the larger top RF I removed long ago and it was never replaced. I just solder down the tabs of the smaller RF shield that protects the solder side of the mainboard.

 

Now about the power board work:

- It looks good overall!

- Did you apply new thermal paste on the VRs? If so, you might want to try and clean up some of the edges of it a tad

- Did you also replace out the large resistor near the middle of the board? If not, I would think about doing it in the future. Console5 now includes that in the cap kits I think?

 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, -^CrossBow^- said:

- Did you apply new thermal paste on the VRs? If so, you might want to try and clean up some of the edges of it a tad

- Did you also replace out the large resistor near the middle of the board? If not, I would think about doing it in the future. Console5 now includes that in the cap kits I think?

Thanks Crossbow.  I did not do anything with the VRs at all.  That is how they were when I opened up the unit.  I can take a cotton swab to them before re assembly.  The resistor has not been touched either.  I believe it is in the kit I got from Console5 but will check later to be sure.

 

Thank you everyone for your advice and guidance.  I will keep this thread updated about my progress.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, joeatari1 said:

Thanks Crossbow.  I did not do anything with the VRs at all.  That is how they were when I opened up the unit.  I can take a cotton swab to them before re assembly.  The resistor has not been touched either.  I believe it is in the kit I got from Console5 but will check later to be sure.

 

Thank you everyone for your advice and guidance.  I will keep this thread updated about my progress.

No problem!

 

If you didn't replace the thermal paste, I would advise then to do so as the stuff that is there is likely becoming more of a insulator vs conductor for the heat. Surprised it was that way already, maybe someone prior to you replaced out the thermal paste?

 

The resistor is only because it is a high wattage, gets really hot over time and they break down. I've actually worked on a few Intellys where that resistor was literally started to flake apart so it is just another preventive measure to do if you are already in there kinda thing. Double check the flex ribbon that goes between the power board and the main board as well. Many of those over time, the mylar separate and the cable will start to come apart and could pose a shorting issue if not replaced in some way. Some will install standard dupont header/connectors and use standard ribbon cables as I've done, or I now have a local source where I can get a similar mylar cable like the originals only it has a few more pins on it so I have to trim those off match but yeah.

 

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Alright, I took a half hour or so tonight to get the shielding off.  It was a little easier than I thought and the board looks fairly clean underneath.  Thanks @Lathe26 and @-^CrossBow^- for setting me straight on the removal process.

 

The ribbon cable is definitely coming apart as you can see in my photo.  I think tomorrow night I will take the time to replace the caps and that resistor.  Then it is off to Digikey for thermal paste and ribbon cable.  A fellow retro gamer that I just met today (and am hoping to get on AA soon) recommended Arctic Silver 5 for thermal paste.  Any opinions?  Thanks again everyone!

 

20201022_222120.thumb.jpg.6b33c134b3a0c23715c6e89d63f80ead.jpg

 

20201022_222131.thumb.jpg.4b20fa2fc6ceb23cfaf24ac93ab31dc8.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Artic silver is a bit overkill but sure it would do the job. I just use the high performance paste from Console5 that comes in a syringe like tube for VRs. I only use artic silver or something similar when applying a cooler to the CPU in a computer. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So cool.

 

Sorry don't mean to de-rail the thread here but is there a soldering iron or technique you would recommend for shakey hands? Unfortunately, I have some bad genetics that are interfering with my plans to learn to repair electronics. 

Edited by CaptainCanadian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The powerboard soldering looks good. You can spit polish it with some alcohol if you like. And for larger areas like RF shields I tend to use the beefy Weller soldering irons with a lot of reserve heat capacity or one of those micro-butane torches to spread heat around. The torches get super hot, so you always want to keep like a circular motion going in the general area. It gets the stuff warm enough to where a smaller soldering iron can do the job. If you have to pry and desolder at the same time then you'll need a blade tip you won't mind scratching up and stuff.

 

If it's all new to you then maybe get some scrap electronics to practice on first. Older VCRs and many TV boards like to have a lot of shielding.

 

Soldering with shaky hands.. Well back in the day when I was tweaking pot I would use a bigger heavier beefy gun to smooth things out. I would use an arrangement of metal brackets or shims or resting points that the soldering iron can lean against as a support or guide. You could even use a desk vice to hold the workpiece and another to hold the iron. Set it up at the right heights and push them together to bring the tip into contact with the joint. Joints!! heh..!

 

It would be neat to see some Da'Vinci-like robotic hands for this sort of thing, but the cost!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have sort of shaky hands too.  Stupid genetics and all.  I also have a herniated disc and a bone spur in my neck both pushing on my spinal column a little.  Don't need surgery yet but it's coming.  I find the better I magnify things and concentrate, the easier it is.  Glasses and a good magnifier with a lamp.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I finished the power board and the main board recap.  Some of my soldering is a little messy but I don't think I bridged anything.  Have a look.

 

20201115_130003.thumb.jpg.9dbb5166e946f6bfedbc6462c80cc833.jpg

 

20201115_125954.thumb.jpg.c7dfd6fa6ca4f07e7a2753f663912d51.jpg

 

20201115_125949.thumb.jpg.3f805f81209fc1635f069617a340e4ea.jpg

 

I also installed a composite video kit from Retrofixes.  I soldered the wires to the bottom of the board instead of the top as they had suggested in their directions.  Shouldn't be an issue with that, should there?

20201115_151726.thumb.jpg.d0cbd4e95161da7857443664e251cd6a.jpg

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, Keatah said:

I would want to check and be sure there's no shorts in the red areas I marked. Looks ok otherwise.

Hmm.  Now that I see it on my screen and can blow the pic up, yeah, I may have bridged to the ground trace.  My eyes aren't so great without a lot of magnification.  I will try to clean it up later after a nap.  That always helps my eyes focus a little better.😁 Thanks @Keatah.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/25/2020 at 4:12 PM, joeatari1 said:

I have sort of shaky hands too.  Stupid genetics and all.  I also have a herniated disc and a bone spur in my neck both pushing on my spinal column a little.  Don't need surgery yet but it's coming.  I find the better I magnify things and concentrate, the easier it is.  Glasses and a good magnifier with a lamp.

Bummer. I had an unpleasant experience with that condition. Discectomy with fusion:C4-C5-C6 fixed me right up. Nerve pain and dysfunction were gone when I woke up from surgery.

 

My unsolicited advice is as soon as you need the surgery, get the surgery.

Edited by BigO
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Keatah said:

I would want to check and be sure there's no shorts in the red areas I marked. Looks ok otherwise.

 

 

20201115_151726.jpg.e96e3b9a9cba4031924206daf7083fc3.png

This isn't a bad idea at all as it is easier to solder to the points under the board sometimes vs the top. However, I also try and find other points closer to the AV board that I can solder to to keep the wiring that much nicer. Also as the intelly board mounts upside down in the system, it is easier in this case to route the wires when you do solder on the component side. But yeah I'm not a fan of soldering anything to the pins of the power ribbon cable due to the age of those cables and how easy it can be to melt them. So I use my meter in continuity mode and look for other components, test pads, and in the case of the intelly, empty vias along the same trace routes to solder the wiring to. The ground wire is a great example because you can literally solder it to any point along the edge of the main board. There are ton of unused vias to attach the ground wire too instead of soldering to the ribbon cable pins.

 

On your soldering it looks like you might not have the iron quite hot enough on those ground plane and that can cause intermittent connection to the wire or worse, the wire itself not getting the strength it needs from the solder holding the strands properly and they start to break loose. 

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Best tips I can give for soldering...

 

1. Use the correct tip, the larger the tip the easier it is to get enough heat into what you are working on. A chisel or bevel tip is better for this type of work than a conical tip.

2. Use flux! A flux pen is good enough, flux paste is also handy.

3. Always tin the tip of your iron. It should be nice and shiny.

4. Heat the joint, not the solder. The solder should flow freely into the joint and be nice and shiny.

5. Clean off flux residue with isopropyl alcohol

6. Tin wires (coat with a little solder) before soldering them

 

If you have trouble with shaky hands, use a wrist rest, or try to rest your wrists on something solid to help stabilise your hands. A soldering station with a lighter soldering pencil might be easier to use.

 

Check this link out, this is a neater solution to the broken power ribbon situation (the gap between the pins on the power connector happen to be a standard spacing):

 

 

- James

Edited by HunterZero
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...