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Old 20th June 2011, 01:44 PM   #12991
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anatech View Post
Hi Steve,
I'm happy you didn't have the troubles I did. The issues were actually weak points in the design of those irons. Your use was somewhat different though, I had 10 or so guys using these irons all day.
That could explain it.

The irons at Coda have burn marks all over the cases and cables and Doug was fairly frequently having to buy replacement tips. What's with some people? Sheeesh.

Quote:
Before starting that company, I had a Weller station that lasted many years with the odd problems. Switches mostly, and one barrel nut. Once they are used every day, things change. I think that's why factories use irons we don't often hear of. Fixed many of those in the calibration lab I worked at.
Yeah, the Wellers are good irons, but apparently not gorilla proof.

se
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Old 20th June 2011, 02:09 PM   #12992
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My experience with the Wellers is simple, the gun eats tips like crazy. The marksman iron old style was handy for field work, but the new one with the neon lamp runs too hot and wears out a tip just doing a single 150 pin connector. The WLC 100 is a light dimmer with an iron, leave it on hot and the tips die quickly, leave it at a reasonable temperature and the tips last a month or two. I have had to replace 1 switch and 2 irons in ten years on two benchs, but the second bench is not used very often. The Wellers with the magnetic temperature control work great, but are no longer available. The high end Weller temperature controlled irons first generation were overpriced junk. I haven't used anything newer. My black beauty iron lasted the longest. I stopped using it when the tip finally wore out, at that time they did not sell through distribution and without the internet I could not find a replacement. Now that parts are easy to get I can't find the iron. It had a wood handle which is still the best handle I've used.
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Old 20th June 2011, 03:05 PM   #12993
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Ed, my experience with Weller matches yours. I would like to be able to afford a PACE or similar really exotic iron, someday.
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Old 20th June 2011, 03:06 PM   #12994
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Hi,

Quote:
Originally Posted by simon7000 View Post
My experience with the Wellers is simple, the gun eats tips like crazy.
Gun!? You are not actually using that? I started soldering with that sort, BAD, BAD idea...

Quote:
Originally Posted by simon7000 View Post
The WLC 100 is a light dimmer with an iron,
I just had a look, this has got to be a fake!

Someone actually DARES to put the Weller brand on that piece of chinese sailboat? (that would be a Junk).

Quote:
Originally Posted by simon7000 View Post
The Wellers with the magnetic temperature control work great, but are no longer available.


They are not!?

Merde. Scheisse. Excrement.

I'll have to find one or two on e-bay for a lifetime supply then and I guess bunker some tips (I do have them last quite long).

Seems they still have my "usual" magnetostatic Iron on Amazon:

Amazon.com: Weller® 60W 120V Temperature Controlled Soldering Station: Home Improvement

Ciao T
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Old 20th June 2011, 03:14 PM   #12995
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Thanks for the correction this version is still in production!
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Old 20th June 2011, 03:26 PM   #12996
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The Wellers are for sure in production, I bought one 2 weeks ago from Digikey/Germany.

jan didden
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Old 20th June 2011, 04:20 PM   #12997
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A lot of soldering appears to be going on in China using their own gear. So I opted about a year ago for an Aoyue station, which as I understand is mainly developed for the local market. I solder hot, at around 340 to 380 Celsius, and even after a year of intensive use the 0.1 mm tip does not show any kind of pitting. Remarkeable.
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Old 20th June 2011, 04:38 PM   #12998
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon7000
The Wellers with the magnetic temperature control work great, but are no longer available.
Hi Simon,

I have the WES50 and it has the magnetic temperature control. I don't remember what the purpose of that is, maybe you could explain? I have noticed that when I forget to turn it off, I'll come back and find the unit off with the tip cool. I have to turn it off and back on again to get it to function.

Anyway, I've had it a long time and haven't had to replace anything and tips last forever the way I use it.

John
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Old 20th June 2011, 04:53 PM   #12999
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All this talk about soldering irons and nobody has mentioned the best iron in the world???

Once you use it, you will never be able to use anything else. The "power supply" is a 13 MHz oscillator feeding a 50 watt RF power amp. The "cord" is an extremely limp and flexible coaxial cable. The RF energy is guided through the handle and to the tip, where it is absorbed by the special coating applied to the tip.

So the heat is exactly where you want it -- on the surface of the tip, where it can heat the solder and the joint. You don't have to wait for the heat to come up from a heating element and then through the tip to the tip surface -- it's already there.

The coating is a special alloy that has a controlled Curie point. When the alloy reaches the proper temperature, it becomes non-magnetic and won't absorb the RF energy. When it cools down, it again absorbs the energy and heats back up. The result is extremely accurate temperature control.

One of the best things about this iron is that you can put an ultra-fine tip on for SMT work (eg, QFP's) and it will still deliver the full 50 watts to that teeny tip if it needs to. There is nothing like it on the market.

New units are $800 or $900 in the US. But on eBay they go for $100 or $200 for an older (discontinued) model to $300 or $350 for the current model. Tips are $20 each new for regular shapes, and up to $100 for special QFP shapes, but new ones on eBay are typically half that, and used ones a quarter of new prices.

I am talking about a Metcal:

Metcal Soldering Station - Metcal mx-500p-11 Rework Station Power Supply

There is nothing even close to this. You can put in a 1/4" chisel tips and solder to massive binding posts, or change the tip in five seconds with the non-meltable silicon "hotpad" and be working on an SMT circuit board using a tip with a 1/64" point on fine-pitch QFP's. There are hundreds of different tip shapes.

It is the only soldering iron that we use in our factory. We have dozens. We even buy them for our distributors overseas. The only non-Metcal we have is our de-soldering station. It is a Pace. Not as nice as the Metcal, but the Metcal de-soldering station requires shop air, while the Pace has a built-in vacuum pump.
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Old 20th June 2011, 05:01 PM   #13000
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Hi Charles,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Hansen View Post
All this talk about soldering irons and nobody has mentioned the best iron in the world???
Now why'd you have to go and do that?

I remember seeing one of the Schwarzengger movies and I recognised he had the then brand new Russian SVU-A (a bullpup version of the russian sniper rifle, with full automatic setting and a 30 round clip) and I had a bad case of gun envy. Now no-one can get SVU'A's (the russians do not export them and withn the Assault weapons ban in the US I doubt they ever will), so I am stuck with this.

And now you had to go and give me a case of Soldering Iron Envy as well, after JosephK as already made me jealous of his LeCroy 'Scope....

Bwahhhh....



YOU ARE ALL SO MEAN....

Okay, I'm over it. I'm good.

Ciao T

PS, thanks, I'll have to keep an eye out for one of these, sounds like a hell of a tool...
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