Soldering mat

Found a commercial for this silicon soldering mat when I was surfing Facebook…
Pretty nifty little thing. A few boxes with lids and a gazillion small parts holders, some with magnets.

Will come in handy for future ConTrollR projects :wink:


Nice! Although I’ve always tried to keep away stuff from my soldering spot… I have a habit of wildly swinging my iron about! :wink:

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The mat is quite large.
Silicon resists a lot of heat and it’s antistatic.

Will report back after I have used it :wink:

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@Troll, do you have a link to where you got it from? Looks like something I could use when I start soldering brass.

I’ve been using a self healing cutting mat, but I really like the screws trays in the one that you picked Troll.

Alvin Professional Self-Healing Cutting Mat, 12" x 18", Green/Black (GBM1218)

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Here’s where I got mine.

Note there are different sizes. I got the largest one.

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I was wondering, is there anyone here skilled with TIG steel welding?
What would be a good Welding Helmet?

The hood (the shell part) is going to be fine with pretty much any manufacture out there. The lens is where you should spend your money. It’s been about 20 years since I welded professionally (I actually have a degree in Welding Technology), and least 25 years since I bought a hood (that’s the trade term for your helmet/mask). Speedglass was the hotness the last time I had to buy a hood new, and they do make a great product. Expect to spend some cash for them, and I’m sure someone these days make a cheaper auto darkening shade lens.

Not directly answering your question, but you might find the info of value:

A TIG arc tends to not needs as much of a shade lens as say stick welding, but it also requires a bit more finesse most of the time. Also you usually have both hands full. You can certainly go old school and get a fixed shade lens (non-autodarkening), and you just flip your hood down, that’s what I’ve always done and used. Buy whatever hood brand is available and fits you well at your local welding supply place or big box home improvement store. If you’re not doing this for a living (and heck even if you are, and you’re doing TIG in non-overhead positions), pretty much any hood is going to last for a LONG time. I’d recommend something with a larger viewport over a smaller viewport, specifically if you’re just getting started. It will probably come with a plastic shade lens. Put that in a cabinet somewhere as a last ditch spare. Purchase a glass shade lens, probably around a #10 or #11. Don’t worry about auto darkening. Those are great for production or field environments, and I’m not gonna lie a nice convenience even in the home shop. They are absolutely not necessary though if you’re on a budget.


Hey man, thanks! That’s quite some info, a bunch of good ones too!
:smiley: Appreciated!

No problem if you have any welding questions feel free to PM me. It’s been years since I did anything more than putter around the house stuff, but I’ve still got all my manuals if it gets to that point.

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:slight_smile: Nice! Thank you very much again, I think I will!

Speaking of TIG welding, I did the Lynskey (formerly Litespeed) bike factory tour in Chattanooga, TN a few years ago. They are family owned and operated. Watching the sister TIG weld titanium tubes together was fascinating. They plug the frame ends and pump in inert gas inside before beginning to weld the lugless frames. What art.