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"aged" solder joints???

4/1/2004 8:58 PM
Brad R "aged" solder joints???
You guys ever hear of "aging" solder joints to keep a board looking original? I had a tech tell me he did this when replacing some resistors. I think he was covering for not having actually replaced the parts. Even told me how it's done. It sounds like bs to me, what do you guys think?
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4/1/2004 6:46 PM
Rick Erickson

"You guys ever hear of "aging" solder joints to keep a board looking original? Even told me how it's done."
Feel free to share that information with us, then we can tell you what we think. You haven't given us much to work with: or - how can I have an opinion on a process I don't know about?  
I can't imagine how or why someone would want to "age" a solder connection. Bright & shiny connections = good, dull & cracked connections = bad.  
4/1/2004 11:49 PM
Brad R
Thanks Rick. Ok, I'll try to fill you in without turning this into a real "he said, I said" thing. I took this guy a late 60s Bassman for a tune-up before selling it and ,among other things, he said he replaced a couple of resistors on the board. When I took a look inside I couldn't see anything that look changed. When I called and asked him about this he told me that he used carbon comp resitors, identical to the originals, and "aged" the solder joints and there was no way I would be able to tell if anything had been changed. When I said that the joints looked dull(from age, like all the others) and still had dust on them, he said there are all kinds of tricks to make them look that way like putting apple juice, murieic(spelling?) acid, and dust from the house on them.  
It's mostly about the principle to me. I think he didn't do what he said he did, charged me for it and then tried to feed me some bs when I called him on it. He also claimed to have replaced a chip in another SS amp and did the same thing to those solder joints and put dust on the chip when I said it didn't look changed either. What do you guys think about all this?  
4/1/2004 9:35 PM
Bob M.

Sounds like a Dan Torres concept.  
Mouser is having a special this month on Pre-CBS dust, only $10 for a 3 ounce bottle (will Bill Paley's autograph).
4/1/2004 11:24 PM
Bruce /Mission Amps

You should always demand to have the old parts and tubes back.  
Anyone here who does this for a living will tell you the same thing...  
we ALWAYS return old bad parts.  
If the owner doesn't want them I let them toss them in the dumpster or trash. They're almost always junk anyhow.  
It's just the way it's done in the real world.  
4/2/2004 12:04 PM
you should also ask for the old parts back when you bring your car in for service somewhere!  
4/1/2004 11:33 PM
bob p
this aging stuff is getting rediculous.  
sure, if you've got a historic reissue LP that you want to age to look like an artifact you could use vinegar on the chrome parts to dull their finish. (fwiw muriatic acid is another name for shop grade hydrochloric acid, often used in swimming pools, which would need to be diluted before you used it).  
its conceivable that somebody would try to dab acetic acid (aka vinegar) on a solder joint with a Q-tip if he were trying to fool a vintage anal homo about an amp being fully original, but to what end?  
you get to a point where you have to be skeptical that fraud is involved. if a tech is trying to conceal the fact that an amp has had repairs, is aging solder joints to conceal the service, and he is failing to disclose that an amp has been serviced, then he's committing an act of fraud.  
OTOH, if he's telling you that he's serviced an amp that still has "original dust" on the boards, you have to be skeptical that you're being fed a line of bull -- in all likelihood the amp has never been serviced, and you should be skeptical of a case of fraud.  
no matter which way you slice it, this guy's story sounds fishy. i wouldn't reinforce this kind of shifty behavior by giving him any of my money.  
just my 2-cents. ;)  

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