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Frequently Asked Questions
What is the
difference between brazing and soldering?
Soldering - Soldering has the same definition as brazing except for
the fact that the filler metal used has a liquidus below 840°F
(450°C) and below the solidus of the base metals.
How does brazing work?
What is flux?
How can flux be cleaned off?
How can flux be reconstituted?
What is the strength
of a brazed joint?
What is Handy One®?
alloy is recommended for brazing copper to copper joints?
What are the many uses
Brazing is used to join copper tubing to return bends, copper tubes to headers and fins, and tube bundles to shells. Brazing joins both similar and dissimilar metals, thin and thick sections, and metals of widely differing melting temperatures.
Brazing is so universally used in this industry because it's economical, easy to do and because it produces strong, leak tight joints. Leak tightness is especially critical in HVAC units because these are all closed systems; containing a liquid or gas as a heating or cooling medium. Leakage from any joint would allow the liquid or gas to escape, and prevent the unit from functioning properly.
These advantages, economy, strength and leak tightness are inherent
in the brazing process.
What is the nature
of the brazing process?
The brazing process consists of the broad heating of the base metals to the point where the filler metal, applied to the joint area, will be melted and drawn by capillary action through the entire joint. After cooling, the brazed joint constitutes a strong metallurgical bond between the filler metal and the two base metals.
Two outstanding characteristics of a brazed joint are its high strength, and the low heat at which it is made. A properly made brazed joint will generally be stronger than the metals being joined. And the temperature at which the joint is made is much lower than the melting temperature of the metals being joined.
A brazed joint "makes itself," in the sense that capillary
action, rather than operator manipulation, is responsible for flowing
the filler metal completely through the joint. But even a properly
designed joint can turn out imperfectly unless you follow correct
brazing procedures. These procedures can be described as six
do you disassemble brazed joints?
Safety in Brazing
Fumes: Ventilate confined areas, using fans, exhaust hoods or respirators if necessary. Clean all base metals to remove surface contaminants that may create fumes when the metals are heated. Use flux (where required) in sufficient quantity to prevent oxidation and fuming during the heating cycle. Heat broadly, and heat only the base metals – not the filler metal. Remove any toxic coatings and be careful not to overheat assemblies.
Torch Heat and Rays: Operators should wear gloves to protect
hands against heat. Shaded goggles or fixed glass shields protect
operators against eye fatigue and vision damage. For a detailed discussion
of safety factors, consult the National Standards Z49.1 "Safety
in Welding and Cutting" published by the American Welding
Society (AWS) 550 N.W. LeJeune Road, P.O. Box 351040, Miami, FL 33135.
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