To Better to Build a Soldering Toolkit, there is Need to Know the Basics. Here is a Soldering Iron Buying Guide For DIY Electronics Projects. There are different types of Soldering Iron, in fact some are not even named as Soldering Iron. We will not discuss about Butane Powered Irons, Battery Powered Irons, Soldering Torches, Soldering Guns and Cold-Heat Soldering. These mentioned devices are not exactly for Printed Circuit Boards ( PCB ). Revering of soldering is done by Desoldering with usually a different instrument. Next need is a stand. Next is supply of the metal for soldering and finally some wire cutters. In Amazon, Ebay etc. websites one may get good Soldering Iron at discount price. The Intention of This Soldering Iron Buying Guide For DIY Electronics Projects is Cost Reduction for Our Readers.
Soldering Iron Buying Guide : Must Know Part About Soldering Iron
A 30-40 watt fixed-temperature iron will be on the hot side for electronics work. It may melt solder very quickly and make it really easy to heat up large component leads quickly, such as those on connectors. However, it also risks exceeding the heat limits on more delicate components. We would not recommend an iron with that amount of hotness to a newbie. The hotter it is, the faster it is to make the joint, but also the quicker it can damage something.
In an ideal case, a Soldering Iron should meet certain criterions :
- Wattage should be within 15 to 50 watts.
- Should have a stand
- Heating element should be replaceable
- Heating should be faster & consistent and starts at approximately 600 °F
- Tip may be changed from a set – tip can be screwdriver, spade, conical etc.
- Electrical/Electronic control of temperature is a good part
- Should be a reputed brand
Wattage does not predict the end temperature. There are brands like Hakko, Aoyue, Weller, Black & Decker, JBC, Copper etc. Pencil soldering irons are pathetic. One must not think about budget that much but the features and brand while buying a Soldering Iron. Costly components can die due to uncontrolled heating with a cheap material – this is exactly opposite of buying multimeter to by a beginner. Good soldering iron may cost $50-$100 or more. You will search with the brand name like with this phrase – “Hakko soldering iron” to find deal.
Soldering Iron Buying Guide : Your Kit
Read to use kits are available from smaller seller like Adafruit but they may make a good fortune out of you. It is always better to avoid such companies while buying stuffs. For a kit, you need –
- Soldering Iron Stand
- Soldering Iron Sponges
- Soldering Iron
- Solder sucker or solder wick for desoldering
- Instruments to handle – (i) Diagonal cutter (ii) Wire cutter (iii) Needle-nose pliers
The three tools – (i) Diagonal cutter (ii) Wire cutter (iii) Needle-nose pliers can be purchased phase-wise and must be from best known brands for decade after decades usage. Yes, Pliers, Wrenches are made for usage for very long time. Cheap will get rust and die.
What? You Made a $500 Bill! Tell us cheaper alternative
That is why we gave you a list. Wire cutter, Soldering iron and Solder would work fine for the first month. Instead of buying all the stuffs together, give importance to buying a good soldering iron which replaceable tips or just buy an ordinary pencil tip soldering iron with the risk of overheating. You are starting at $100 or $10. Solder Sucker never costs a huge. We are insisting to buy the stuffs separately so that you can control the quality. You may buy a $5 solder iron as use and throw material but do not buy a use and throw plier or wire cutter. They are basically general purpose tools. Among the cheaper brands, Stanley soldering iron is not bad. Stanley is an old company operating since 1857. Do not try more cheaper to die out of electric shock. It may be difficult to handle Stanley by a newbie due to huge heating. At $10, what you can you expect apart from fast heating up, clean tip, possible branded warranty to get some warranty if you die out of electric shock. If Stanley make it better, it would cost like Weller. Quite obvious.