My dad was an electronic instrument tech in the air force, and later ran a side business (among a few) repairing CB radios. He never taught me to solder. I watched him work a few times, and did a few solder jobs as a kid, but he never sat down and said, "Do this, don't do that, this is why." My first actual soldering iron was repairing some camera shutter switches (or something like that I forget) with my Uncle John. John is not typically a handy person. He taught me about tinning both parts letting them flow together and making sure you had a continuous shiny finish. With those limited skills I was able to do a lot of work. I repaired guitar cables, fixed my own radios, and managed to muddle my way through simple control hardware, and got things done. I favored a small lower power iron. I really favored the low power iron when I did my first soldering intensive work for myself and others for fun and profit. Making parallel cross over cables for PC to PC data transfer. Much faster than serial null modem communication.
I never really liked those big clunky solder guns. I own two of them. One was still in the cellophane inside the box until a couple days ago. Whenever I needed to solder something heavy I always went right to the torch. Well, a few days ago my son volunteered to install a new brush assembly in one of my Milwaukee cordless drills. Rather than splice the wires we went right to the trigger switch where my little pencil irons just wouldn't touch solder on the terminals. I broke out the big old solder gun, and handed it to him. Before I could make it thru the door back into my office he was saying it worked almost instantly and asking why I never taught him to use that before. LOL.