Is my solder safe?!?!

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Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby crossedrifles08 » Sun Mar 10, 2013 3:26 pm

Guys, was finishing up a column, and ran out of my normal run of the mill lead free plumbing solder. So I go and look in the tool box and I see I have a roll of Bernzomatic Lead Free Silver Bearing Metal Work solder. So I grab it, and finish soldering up the parts that I needed to solder. Then I got to put it back in the tool box and pick up another package that is the same and it says clear as day on the font "NOT FOR PLUMBING." Now, obviously I'm worried. After getting online and looking at the MSDS (here: http://www.homedepot.com/catalog/pdfIma ... 919ce5.pdf ) it shows that it doesn't have anything but copper, tin and silver for the metal. The specific product I'm using is this (here: http://www.bernzomatic.com/item.html?id=68 ).

Am I safe? You think this is just ease of use caution, or a health one?
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby jholmz » Sun Mar 10, 2013 3:41 pm

under section 5 of the msds (reactivity) says its incompatible with chlorine, precautions to take in handling keep product away fron food products, i would say take it apart and clean it up and resolder with a different solder myself. someone else might know more about that solder but seems like electrical solder to me
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby dad2five » Sun Mar 10, 2013 4:05 pm

What's the worst that could happen?

Your product could taste crappy.
Your product could make you sick.
Your product could make someone else sick.
The solder could fail in the middle of a run and catch the whole house on fire.
...catch you on fire.
...your dog on fire

I say since you posted it here you have concerns about it. In the interest of u trusting your equipment, take it apart and redo it.

But hey, I'm new here
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby crossedrifles08 » Sun Mar 10, 2013 4:14 pm

Well, considering I worry about most of those things anyways. And considering I've posted the MSDS. Can I have someone's opinion on the product?

And for the record, I'm not concerned with the quality of the soldering job or the strength. I'm concerned about the health aspects. It appears safe. I just have no earthly idea as to why it would have the "not for plumbing" logo.
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby jholmz » Sun Mar 10, 2013 4:19 pm

like i posted above it reacts with chlorine and tap water has chlorine in it it is also to be kept away from food products i would think this for drinking also. better safe than sorry
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby crossedrifles08 » Sun Mar 10, 2013 4:30 pm

So there is an issue with some type of reaction with chlorine? Ok, thanks for actually answering the question instead of giving the normal "ramble ramble, the sky is falling."

The good think is I only have two joints that are in the vapor path that have it. So it shouldn't be too hard to go back and replace.
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby crossedrifles08 » Sun Mar 10, 2013 4:56 pm

Btw, after doing some research, it seems silver itself has a reaction with chlorine producing silver chloride. Silver bearing solder is usually less than 5%, in this cas 2%. And after doing further research, ANYONE that is using a solder containing SILVER to attach copper to stainless is running the exact same risk. Is there another specific reaction I'm unaware of, otherwise this is no more dangerous then what everyone else is using. It seems to me the reason for not using it is that it doesn't flow into the joint as well. But still creates a strong bond.
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby Oxbo Rene » Sun Mar 10, 2013 5:24 pm

Well, myself, I played it safe when I built mine = Used the same stuff that my plumber used to solder my water pipes ..................
It is not the matter, nor, the space between the matter,
but rather, it is that finite point at which the two meet,
that, and only that, is what is significant...........
(Of course, I could be wrong) ..........
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby Sedaterman » Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:08 pm

Sorry to jump in. I don't want to change the flow of the current thread,but I have a similar issue and this seems like the appropriate place to address it.

I have zero soldering experience ,but I decided to try my hand at building a copper pot still with a Liebig condenser.
I have been using lead free solder with water base flux. I have the boiler wall assembled with a good result,however I am reluctant to try and tackle soldering the boiler floor in place. Call me chicken :D . I decided to take my stuff to my local friendly neighborhood sheet metal shop and ask for a little professional help. They were very nice and agreed to solder the floor in place for a nominal fee. They asked if it was for making maple syrup ( a popular pastime here in NE Ohio). I told them it was for distilling water, with a smile and a wink. They told me they had no problem with lead free solder but insisted on using an acid flux. They insisted it would be perfectly safe as they have made several of "these devices".
Is acid base flux okay or should I call them back and insist on water base. I would appreciate your input.

Concerned in Ohio

Tom
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby oliver90owner » Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:42 pm

Re the solder.

Silver solder is a hard solder and has a much higher melting point than plumbing solder, so is not sold for plumbing. The issues of silver in potent water are minimal, I would think (compare with lead pipes of yesteryear) but should, I suppose be heeded. That said, here we have a system with no chlorine and very most certainly, if the solder is on the upstream of the vapour, there is no chance whatsoever that silver halide (insoluble in water and breaks down to silver metal in light) which is a solid is going to get carried over to the product. It would (if anything) finish in the remains of the wash). I certainly would not use silver solder due to the cost, but would not be replacing it, either.

Re the flux - acid or water based. Even water based can be acidic, I suppose. Many acid based fluxes are, or have been, used for plumbing. The flux is there to 'wet' the joint and will not be there when the solder has replaced it and filled the joint. As long as any flux is removed from the metal (inside and out), there should be no issues with later corrosion, acidic or neutral.

RAB
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby crossedrifles08 » Tue Mar 12, 2013 7:57 pm

oliver90owner wrote:Re the solder.

Silver solder is a hard solder and has a much higher melting point than plumbing solder, so is not sold for plumbing. The issues of silver in potent water are minimal, I would think (compare with lead pipes of yesteryear) but should, I suppose be heeded. That said, here we have a system with no chlorine and very most certainly, if the solder is on the upstream of the vapour, there is no chance whatsoever that silver halide (insoluble in water and breaks down to silver metal in light) which is a solid is going to get carried over to the product. It would (if anything) finish in the remains of the wash). I certainly would not use silver solder due to the cost, but would not be replacing it, either.

Re the flux - acid or water based. Even water based can be acidic, I suppose. Many acid based fluxes are, or have been, used for plumbing. The flux is there to 'wet' the joint and will not be there when the solder has replaced it and filled the joint. As long as any flux is removed from the metal (inside and out), there should be no issues with later corrosion, acidic or neutral.

RAB



And after a VERY short study this is what I determined. There by putting an end to the "the sky is falling, the sky is falling" crap that people sputter when asked a very direct question. Thanks Rab.
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby Sedaterman » Wed Mar 13, 2013 2:41 am

Thanks for the help. I feel much better now

Tom
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby rager » Sat Mar 16, 2013 5:50 pm

i just finished my first build and i used silvabrite 100. lead free-antimony free. 95.6% tin/4%copper/.4% silver. i found it at FW WEBB. http://www.silvaloy.com/silvabrite100.php. from my reading ti feel im ok but if anyone has any concern with what i used please let me know. thanks

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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby IlliniDistiller » Sat Mar 16, 2013 7:48 pm

Well, here's what I found in the MSDS for this solder. Whether or not you feel it is a risk is ultimately up to you. Here it is:

Rosin 65997-06-0 NK NE 0.1mg//m3(*4)
0.2 mg/m3(*4)
2.5 1.0-6.0
NOTES:*1-Product formulation is to customer specification and appears on product packaging or packing slip.
*2-Product weight formulation is to customer specification and appears on product packaging or packing slip.
*3-Remaining constituents, by volume, are inert or constitute less than the declaratory reporting threshold.
*4- Aliphatic Aldehydes, measured as formaldehyde (CAS #50-00-0; RTECS #LP89250000), best indicator of rosin
pyrolysis products.

Formaldehyde. Not a particularly good thing. Seems as its produced by heating the rosin. If'n it were me, I'd redo it.
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby oliver90owner » Sun Mar 17, 2013 2:28 am

rager,

SILVABRITE 100 is a safe and easy to use solder for drinking water systems and other applications. (RoHS Compliant) (my underlining)

That first line from the manufacturer says enough, I would think. OK, higher operating temperature, but you could always ask them about the duty under which you are operating (steam at 80degrees Celsius or so). They are the experts.

RAB
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby halfbaked » Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:12 pm

How about Radnor stay-bright. I think it is 4% silver. I went into a welding shop and they had a couple damaged packages and wrote it off and said here take it free. If I use this for a shotgun or a precondencer would this be safe?

On the flux is Lenox general purpose liquid soft solder soldering flux. I got is at the local AC shop. The guy said it was exact the same thing as Harris stay clean just their house brand.
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby halfbaked » Tue Mar 26, 2013 11:40 am

buuuump
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Re: Is my solder safe?!?!

Postby Sedaterman » Sat Apr 06, 2013 9:07 am

I have finished my still and completed my cleaning run. Amazingly I have found no vapor leaks. However this was my first experience at soldering. There are some areas where excess solder has seeped outside the seams. It looks amateurish to say the least. Any suggestions on how I might rid the still of excess solder short of reheating. I am afraid I will ruin the seals. My mantra has always been the enemy of good is better and I am afraid I will cause a leak If I try and improve the appearance. I tried an angle grinder on a piece of scrap copper that I soldered and it just roughed things up. I can live with the current results but would appreciate any input from the experts. Would some excess solder on the interior of the still have any untoward consequences ? I apologize if this is an inappropriate thread to address this issue but I was unable to post in what I thought was the proper thread. Not sure what I am doing wrong there but I will try and figure it out in due time.

Thanks. You guys are great

Tom

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