How to Choose a Soldering Iron For Your Stained Glass Kit

When you start your stained glass hobby and put together your first stained glass kit, you’ll find that your soldering iron is one of the tools that you will use most often.

Creating items of stained glass is usually done by one of two primary methods. The traditional lead came method is used to make leaded glass windows or other, usually larger items. The copper foil method is used to make beautiful Tiffany style lamps or other more delicate artwork. Although the materials you use to join your stained glass pieces is not the same in each of these methods, you will still need to use your soldering iron to attach, or solder, these pieces together.

It is really not necessary, especially when starting out, to have a large or costly soldering iron. In fact a lightweight and easy to handle iron is best to allow you to easily solder the finer joints you will have between small pieces of glass.

When you look to purchase a soldering iron you will find that they are rated by their wattage. The amount of heat put out is determined by the rated wattage of your iron. And unless you have prior experience and intend to do large projects such as church windows as small soldering iron in the 80 to 100 watt range will handle all your needs.

On the web stained glass suppliers such as Delphi Glass have good quality soldering irons that are made for working with stained glass. Irons of this class usually are sold with a number of extra tips. There is an assortment of different widths. This allows you to easily control the final width of your soldering joints and build up the solder so the final look is even and clean. It is a simple matter to change tips and by doing so change the width of your solder line. The different tips also vary by the amount of heat that is put out. By using different tips you can control the amount of heat.

When you are choosing between the various soldering irons for your stained glass kit try to stay with one that has iron plated tips. Tips are quite easy to keep clean and with good care will last a long time. By taking care of your tips and making sure you strike them off and clean them before you switch to a different one you will find that they will improve in performance over time. By using them and keeping them clean they become smoother and the solder flows off them smoothly and easily.

If you are starting your hobby and looking to get your first stained glass kit, or are putting a kit together piece by piece, there is no need to spend a lot of money on your first iron. When you are first starting out you won’t want to spend a lot of money getting an iron, but you probably should stay away from the very cheapest ones.

Look at the various choices available. An iron priced in the middle of those available would be a good choice. As you get a feel for your work and learn more about what types of project you enjoy doing you will also become more familiar with doing soldering and using your iron. Then if your craft takes you in a specific direction you can consider getting another iron that is more targeted to the work you will be doing.