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Recommend me a Soldering Iron

Dellquay13

Active member
Joined
19 Feb 2021
Messages
252
I've used Irodo solderpro 50 gas irons for years at work, I've always got one in my tool bag. Keep some spare tips, and keep the temperature on minimum or the tips die quickly. I use them in the open air, up ladders, in tiny cupboards, all over the place and are the best I've had in 30 years.
for a mains iron I've alway been happy with Antex in 18w and 25w.
I've never seen a 12v iron that looks good enough to spend my money on. It's a tiny market so not enough demand for the big brands like Weller or Antex to bother with.
 

thinwater

Well-known member
Joined
12 Dec 2013
Messages
2,874
Location
Deale, MD, USA
Wellers? used to make good electric soldering irons. Mine is at least 45 years old and still working well. I did have to put a new cable on it a few years back as the pic on the original went sticky.
Weller. Mine is >60 years old. Power depends on the size wires you are working with (electronics vs. >14 AWG). it's a 100-150W gun and it will heat wires fast. Also makes an excelent hot knife (change the blade) making it a great two-fer. I've got to make 2 x 8-foot cuts in carpet tomarrow, and I know it will do them in about 1 minute each.
 

Gwylan

Well-known member
Joined
31 May 2007
Messages
3,518
Location
Moved ashore
I have given up buying cheap soldering irons and would really appreciate a recommendation for a reasonably priced iron at about £25 (+/-£5). I have tried gas and electric but have not had much success finding a decent one. I am not worried if it's 12V 220V or Gas I just want one that works!
Been down this road.

Mini Portable Alkane Gas Soldering Iron Pen Torch Welding Tool Cordless Kit | eBay

Got one of these as a quick fix. To my surprise it turned out to be much better than I expected.

Gets hot and does the a better job than my skill level
 
Joined
21 Apr 2017
Messages
85
Have soldered hundreds (?thousands) of connections with a couple of soldering stations and with an anon 25W bog standard mains stick iron. The latter is the only one still working, and has soldered SMD components right up to lead window cames. It is also the most compact.

I have found that the heating element connections break at the PCB inside temperature-controlled station irons. I don't know maybe more expensive stations might have a more robust setup.

If you are having trouble, and it isn't the tip condition or your soldering technique (as others have pointed out), then are you using solder with a flux core? Thicker pieces can benefit from extra flux. Are you trying to solder dirty wire? Are you tinning wire before making the joint?
 

RJJ

Well-known member
Joined
14 Aug 2009
Messages
2,937
For small soldering, I have a Dremel hot knife (butane) with a soldering tip. It's been great for three years and wonderful for cutting rope.

Too lightweight for heavy soldering work.
 

Little Dorrit

Well-known member
Joined
27 Jan 2010
Messages
1,031
Location
South Coast occasionally Philippines
Having read the replies, I suspect it's probably a combination of things including a poor tip and low wattage iron. I am going to purchase some 60% Tin /40% Lead solder and will assess the performance of my existing iron although I think it's probably not a lot more than 15W so having looked at the suggestions I'll buy a new one anyway. And finally, I'll be looking at the YouTube videos to brush up on my technique. Thanks for all the suggestions.
 

Rhylsailer99

Active member
Joined
19 Jun 2020
Messages
335
Aoyue if you get the one that has cartridges they heat up very fast , otherwise you can spend lots of money on a jbc are the best. I used to do a lot of solder reworking and the jbc is the best you can get.
 
Joined
21 Apr 2017
Messages
85
Having read the replies, I suspect it's probably a combination of things including a poor tip and low wattage iron.
How thick is whatever you're trying to solder?

If the tip of your iron isn't shiny silver all over then try and give it a good clean. It is said that you shouldn't use anything abrasive on the tip, but I've brought them back from the brink before with 1000 grit sandpaper or the back edge of a hacksaw blade.
 

andsarkit

Active member
Joined
27 Aug 2015
Messages
462
Location
Dartmouth
I've never seen a 12v iron that looks good enough to spend my money on. It's a tiny market so not enough demand for the big brands like Weller or Antex to bother with.
Weller do a 12v version of their TCP which uses the magnetic tip for temperature control but it isn't cheap at £107 Weller
I recently got a Lidl Parkside one that runs on their 20v cordless tool battery . At £12 it seemed worth it as I already had the battery and charger. It seems reasonable quality but expensive here on Ebay. Lidl soldering iron
 
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