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
    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?)

  2. mrmeval

    AAC Fanatic!

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


    Jul 17, 2007
    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:

    Here's their Weller page:
    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

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 3, 2007
    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

    (* jcl *)
  5. goodbyegti

    Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2004
    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.