Ah finally a kind soul. I had almost forgot i put this post out there.
Randyman, the 10ga is heavy and YES conducts heat quite well away from tip of the wire.
Second, i do not have access to a Weller gun, just the solder 'pen' 25W. My father has done a ton of soldering in his day (everything from building houses to owning a Radio Shack) and he said he's never used anything but a regular 25W pen. It has taken me some practice but ya, if i spent the extra $80 i imagine a gun would probably have heated the area more effectively more quickly.
Third, i will give the scraping a try next time. The companies probably use an oil based anti-oxidant compound which i may also be able to remove with some isopropanol. THanks for the tip.
I'll let you know how it goes.
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth. Research begets reality."