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Author Topic: Soldering Station Upgrade  (Read 634 times)

Jeff Lelko

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Soldering Station Upgrade
« on: October 17, 2021, 02:12:04 AM »

Hey all,

I'm looking to buy a new soldering station and am curious to hear what everyone else uses.  I've had plenty of the $7.99 irons and my current (end of life) iron is a $1xx option with digital temperature control.  I find myself often now needing vacuum desoldering and hot air, so a rework station seems to make the most sense versus buying each tool individually. 

The Weller WX 3 suite sure looks nice but definitely carries a professional price tag!  Has anyone had good luck with something closer to the $1000 price point?

Thanks!
-Jeff
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Scott Slater

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Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2021, 04:34:45 AM »

I use the Hakko FX888D.  I don't solder daily but it is a very nice station for my needs.
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Mal Brown

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Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2021, 08:54:34 AM »

I have an old Hakko.   Not sure of the model but it has been great over the years.  I replace tips every so often.  It was a huge step up from the old rat Shack pencil days for me.
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Ike Zimbel

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Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2021, 12:07:32 PM »

Hey all,

I'm looking to buy a new soldering station and am curious to hear what everyone else uses.  I've had plenty of the $7.99 irons and my current (end of life) iron is a $1xx option with digital temperature control.  I find myself often now needing vacuum desoldering and hot air, so a rework station seems to make the most sense versus buying each tool individually. 

The Weller WX 3 suite sure looks nice but definitely carries a professional price tag!  Has anyone had good luck with something closer to the $1000 price point?

Thanks!
-Jeff
Hi Jeff,
I have been buying all of my soldering/de-soldering equipment from these folks https://www.howardelectronics.com/ for at least 20 years. I have no affiliation with them other than they have given me very good service.
I own two De-Non SC7000z de-soldering tools and would not work without them. I have also owned an Edsyn Z500DX which was very, very good https://www.howardelectronics.com/desoldering/desoldering-stations/by-manufacturer/edsyn/zd500dx/edsyn-zd500dx-self-contained-desoldering-station/. Edsyn also makes a very good soldering station, the 951SX https://www.howardelectronics.com/soldering/soldering-stations/by-manufacturer/edsyn/951sx/edsyn-951sx-loner-soldering-station/ which is also excellent.
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~Ike Zimbel~
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Jeff Lelko

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Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2021, 10:37:20 PM »

Thanks Scott, Mal, and Ike!

The Hakko iron looks similar to the current iron I have concerning form/fit/function.  It's served me well for the past decade so I'd have no complaints with something like the FX888D. 

Looking more to Ike's suggestions, I definitely need "regular" soldering and de-soldering but would also like tooling options like hot tweezers at the very least and preferably hot air.  From what I can see it's not particularly cheap to buy all the various tools independently so I'm curious to see what "all in one" rework stations make sense both financially as well as saving space on my bench.  Browsing howardelectronics and others it's just where to start with all that?!  The price points are really all over the map with these.

I'd say on a scale of 1-10 with 1 being crude hobby use and 10 being daily professional use in life-safety appliances I'd rate my use case about a 6 if that helps.  Thanks again!
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John Halliburton

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Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2021, 09:46:24 AM »


I'd say on a scale of 1-10 with 1 being crude hobby use and 10 being daily professional use in life-safety appliances I'd rate my use case about a 6 if that helps.  Thanks again!

Look for a used Hakko soldering station.  I've had a 936 for over twenty years, they work great.  The FX888 I believe is just the newer version, al.beit very restyled. I also have a Metcal station, but these are definitely a step above made for lots of use.

Best regards,

John
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Ike Zimbel

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Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2021, 09:51:31 AM »

Thanks Scott, Mal, and Ike!

The Hakko iron looks similar to the current iron I have concerning form/fit/function.  It's served me well for the past decade so I'd have no complaints with something like the FX888D. 

Looking more to Ike's suggestions, I definitely need "regular" soldering and de-soldering but would also like tooling options like hot tweezers at the very least and preferably hot air.  From what I can see it's not particularly cheap to buy all the various tools independently so I'm curious to see what "all in one" rework stations make sense both financially as well as saving space on my bench.  Browsing howardelectronics and others it's just where to start with all that?!  The price points are really all over the map with these.

I'd say on a scale of 1-10 with 1 being crude hobby use and 10 being daily professional use in life-safety appliances I'd rate my use case about a 6 if that helps.  Thanks again!
Well, I had an earlier version of the Xytronic 988 https://www.howardelectronics.com/desoldering/desoldering-stations/by-manufacturer/xytronic/lf-8800k/xytronic-988dk-lead-free-digital-soldering-and-desoldering-station/. It was...fine, but ultimately not up to being a "daily driver" when I had a full-time audio repair shop. I ended up selling it to one of my bench techs who used it to upgrade and maintain a mixing desk in his studio. By your scale, I would say it was about a 4.
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~Ike Zimbel~
Wireless frequency coordination specialist and educator.
Manufacturer's Representative (Canada)
Radio Active Designs
Pro Audio equipment repair and upgrades.
~416-720-0887~
ca.linkedin.com/pub/ike-zimbel/48/aa1/266

Nathan Riddle

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Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2021, 09:52:33 AM »

My Stahl TCSS from Parts-Express has served me well over the years. Needed a few repairs. It is now retired to bench duty.

My Weller WE1010NA is now my portable soldering station for AVL installs. Works wonderfully I love it.

Louis Rossmann has good thoughts on models:
-TS100 (portable)
-FX951-66
-Old verses new soldering types https://youtu.be/kmq769_ed9w
(check description for different models)
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Steve Litcher

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Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2021, 12:58:51 PM »

+1 for the Hakko. I've had one for 7-8 years now and love it. Very reliable and works great.

ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Soldering Station Upgrade
« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2021, 12:58:51 PM »


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