Can anybody recommend me a good soldering iron for under $100?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by sofakng, Jan 9, 2008.

  1. sofakng

    Thread Starter Member

    Oct 30, 2007
    19
    0
    I'm looking to get into electronics as a hobby and I've had a couple of Radio Shack soldering irons but they seem to be garbage so I think I'm going to ask my wife to buy me a soldering iron for my birthday (eg. a couple of weeks away).

    From what I understand I want temperature controlled soldering iron (and station?) and that Weller is probably the best brand to buy. Is this correct?

    I'm going to be primarily doing bread-board soldering but I will also be doing mod chip installations (eg. requiring a VERY tiny soldering tip, etc).

    Does anybody have any suggestions for me? (as well as sites to order it from?)

    Thanks!
     
  2. mrmeval

    Distinguished Member

    Jun 30, 2006
    833
    2
    Before settling on Weller, lookup specs on Hakko and Metcal.
     
  3. SgtWookie

    Expert

    Jul 17, 2007
    22,182
    1,728
    Weller is a long-established brand, and they have quite a variety of soldering stations.

    All-Spec Industries has Weller models WES51 on sale for $92.30. Temperature-controlled tip, from 350°-850°F. You should get a number of years service out of it.
    Direct link:
    http://www.all-spec.com/1/viewitem/wes51/ALLSPEC/prodinfo/w3path=cat

    Here's their Weller page:
    http://www.all-spec.com/start/weller.html
    I've had a Weller soldering station for many years - and I got it used.
    I haven't bought from All-Spec before - I usually shop locally or use online auctions.

    Haako and Metcal are a couple of brands that I've used also - they have really good products, but you can spend a big bundle on them.
     
  4. John Luciani

    Active Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    477
    0
    I would look at a used Metcal on EBAY or from a surplus store. Also check HAM Fests
    and electronics flea markets.

    I use a Metcal SP200 which I bought new for $240 from hmcelectronics. You could
    probably get a Metcal SP200 or 500 series iron used for $50-$100.

    My tool recommendations are at http://www.luciani.org/getting-it-done/assembly-hints/assembly-hints-index.html#smd-hints

    (* jcl *)
     
  5. goodbyegti

    Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2004
    59
    1
    Second hand metcal or weller would be a very nice choice.

    If you want new i got a xytronix temp controlled iron for about £70 on special offer. Very impressed with the build quality and operation so far.
     
Loading...