Pardon me if this isn't the right forum--I'm a newbie and admit it. Please redirect me if needed...
I'm taking my HVAC class that leads to the EPA test, so I'm new at all this stuff--even though I do have general light construction experience in plumbing and electrical. I just finished the sections on brazing and soldering, and I'm a little confused. I went into HVAC under the impression that soldering was pretty much all that was need. I didn't know that--according to the books--brazing is really the skill most used.
I just wanted to find out from some of the pro's what the real story is. (I'm new to HVAC, but not to schooling and life. That means I know the books don't always teach what is right, or what is common practice). Thanks in advance for any input.
brazing is the most common practice. all the install manuals from manufacturers state that everything should be brazed
there is a solder type braze called stabrite 8 which is like a soft solder but has tensile strengthes of brazing rod
Soldering isn't that different than brazing.
If you can solder well, a little practice and you'll be brazing just as well.
Thanks for the info. The reason I asked the question is related to equipment. With soldering (sweating in the plumber's world I come from), all you need is a cheap propane torch, which I have on hand. To braze, my understanding is that you can only do that with a full blown acetylene setup.
IME, you can get way with an air-acetylene torch but it isn't always practical on the larger sizes because it can take way too long to heat up to the flowing point.
An oxy-acetylene setup is certainly my preference, by far.
Oxy/acc setup brazing with 15% silver solder is what use 95% of the time. Never soft solder refrigeration lines. Soft solder is for water.
I only use a oxy/acet set up in this trade for AC/R piping.
MAPP and propane are for copper water lines.