Any tips for how to get the pin headers to be held straight before soldering them down?

I have really enjoyed soldering the buttons and all on the board, but i find that the pin headers are really hard to hold straight when starting the process.

I am sure others have done this quite a lot. What should i be doing to make this better?

Are there good videos maybe? I have not really googled for this info yet, i figured it might be smarter to ask people that actually do this before i go off half cocked.

Thanks for any help or direction you can send my way!


This is probably the trickiest part of the whole assembly process.

However, it must be done right!
If you have somebody close to you, the easiest thing would be to lend their pair of hands to hold it for you just for a minute or two.

The next option is to set it as straight as possible and then solder the first and the last pin header, so it’s all stable while you solder other pins.

Also if you’re planning on soldering even more in the future (please do!), you could buy a small stand like this that will increase your productivity by at least 50%! They are pretty cheap and can be found in pretty much any hardware store, but their effectiveness is through the roof!

If anybody else has some more advice, feel free to share them here! :slight_smile:

Thank you for the response!

I tried using my helping hands as you show them, but it did not seem like i had enough clampers to keep it all stable. Maybe TWO pair or a third clamper would do the trick though now that i think of it.

Ah HAH! I found JUST the thing!


Well, talk about some high tech…

Doc Oc from Spider-Man? :sweat_smile:

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I just assembled the phone then soldered. The screws held things in place nicely. Another tool that helps is sergical clamps.

Briggs Precision Kelly Forceps Locking Tweezers Clamp, Silver, Curved, 5-1/2 Inch


Well darn. I did not even consider screwing it down THEN doing the soldering. That would make things a LOT easier for this build. Though i am never sad when I get a new tool!

Google Photos


I have always used a small breadboard to hold the pins when soldering to a board like this.


That is ANOTHER great idea! Thank you!

Assembling it and then soldering is a reasonable idea. The standard thing to do when soldering through-hole parts is to solder just two pins, then press down on the thing and re-heat the two pins. If you hear/feel a snap, it wasn’t all the way down onto the board.

I didn’t see anything in the instructions about which end of the pins to solder first, but I put the end with the shoulder in first. That helps to align the pins when you solder the two on each end. Then just look at it. If it looks square and flush against the board, it is. If it isn’t, then reheat each end while pressing on the middle (non-hot) pins.


I did the same as Russ says - following the advise on page 24 of the manual, solder one pin, readjust it reheating. Fiddling with my helping hand turned out quite useful, too. But I think even play dough can help - as long it is as far away as possible from the heat, at the other corner of the headers.