This section is from the book "Soldering For Workshop, Farm And Home", by John Bonert. Also available from Amazon: Soldering For Workshop, Farm And Home - Information On Soft And Hard Soldering - Projects For The Workshop Explained And Illustrated.
When working with a copper which has to be heated over some sort of fire the convenient thing to do is to place the copper back on the fire when it is not being used or it may be placed on some metal object on the bench. If the flame were gas it could be turned down enough to keep the copper at a reasonable heat and the copper could be rested over the flame. The electric copper is best rested in a wire cage while it is waiting to be used. A diagram for making a cage for electric coppers will be found in Figure 23. This cage can be fastened to the wall over the bench or it can be mounted on the side of the bench. It can also be made to stand on the bench by bending the ends of the wire as shown in the diagram. The material needed to make this cage is about 11' of iron or steel wire measuring about 1//8" in diameter. The wire may be a little smaller in diameter but if smaller it may not be stiff enough and if larger it will be more difficult to wind. If there is a machinist's lathe at hand the winding can be done on a piece of 11/4" iron pipe held in the chuck. For those not having a lathe the illustration shows how the winding can be done. A short piece of 2" iron pipe is held in a vise. Two short pieces of 11/4" iron pipe are screwed into an elbow to form a shaft and crank. Into the end of the pipe which is to be used as a shaft, file a notch to hold the wire. Place the shaft through the two inch pipe held in the vise and the improvised winder is ready. Before starting to wind the wire it is well to straighten it out for its entire length as the winding should be done without interruption. Bend the wire to a right angle about 6" from the end. Pass the end into the pipe and let it rest in the notch which has been filed to receive it. This will secure the wire and the twenty turns can now be wound. Be sure to have all the turns close together. This is important because the spaces between the turns will not be equal when the coil is stretched to the required length. The coil is now removed from the shaft. Stretch the coil by grasping both end turns until it will measure about 7" when it is released. For mounting on the wall or end of bench, bend the ends into an eye 2" from the coil to receive the screws for fastening. If the cage is to be portable bend the ends as shown in the drawing so that the bottom of the coil will be at least 11/2" from the bench.
Figure 24 is a soldering pad illustration. This pad has a fireproof surface upon which small articles can be brazed or soldered. The asbestos cement is soft enough so the work can be fastened with pins or staples. It is especially handy when using a mouth blow-pipe. A one-pound coffee can is cut down to a height of 11/2" and is filled to the top with ordinary asbestos cement such as is
Soldering and Brazing Pad Figure 24 used for covering steam boilers and fittings. Mix the cement with enough water to the consistency of stiff putty. Smooth the surface with a putty knife until it is glossy. The cement should be allowed to dry a little before this smoothing is done. Put the pad in a warm place to dry for about two days. If any cracks appear they may be filled with more cement and smoothed again as before.
This yoke is a very efficient device for holding work securely when soldering or brazing. It may be mounted on a wood base or held in the vice. A small parallel clamp is used on each end to hold the work. This yoke will be found indispensable when doing such work as brazing a band saw or any small butt brazing.
A piece of steel 3/16" thick, 11/2" wide and 14" long is required. Bend to shape as shown in diagram. The bottom bends are made first and then the end bends. The bends must be made so that the flat surfaces upon which the work is clamped are in perfect alignment with each other.