I’m disassembling and reconfiguring part of my hydronic heating system and I want to re-use several high quality 1” brass sweat-connected ball valves that would cost about $30 each to replace. (I have more time than money.) The heating system is about 15 years old but the valves are in good shape. They were originally assembled with lead solder.
I’ve already reclaimed one of them after removal by reheating the cup till the solder melts, then wiping inside the cup with a wad of fine steel wool, which seems to attract excess solder pretty well and leaves a smooth surface that will accept a piece of new pipe without interference. I’m protecting the valve body from overheating with wet rags.
Is there a better way? Something that works better than steel wool? Add a little flux? Any tips would be appreciated.