Hakko fx-888d vs Weller Wlc100 (40W)

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quique123

Joined May 15, 2015
404
I'm moving away from a lenk L40 handheld soldering iron to a new model. Over the years I've been in electronics (~3) I've heard about how temperature control is important and a good heating capacity.

I'm trying to compare these two and notice that the Weller Has an analog temperature control which I don't mind at all, and a wattage rating.

The hakko on the other hand is digital but didn't specify wattage. Now the deal with the wattage is that I believe is like the led vs filament or Flourescent bulb issue. Consumers tried to compare Leds vs fluorescentes via their wattage rather than their lumens. So I think wattage is not what I should look at but rather the max temp achieved.

The Weller seems to reach 900F with 5 positions where I think the first and last are 5 and 40w.

The hakko does the same temperature.

So I'm not sure what else to compare. The price point is way different but if there were a real difference in favor of the digital I would go for it.
 

Dodgydave

Joined Jun 22, 2012
9,938
I'm moving away from a lenk L40 handheld soldering iron to a new model. Over the years I've been in electronics (~3) I've heard about how temperature control is important and a good heating capacity.

I'm trying to compare these two and notice that the Weller Has an analog temperature control which I don't mind at all, and a wattage rating.

The hakko on the other hand is digital but didn't specify wattage. Now the deal with the wattage is that I believe is like the led vs filament or Flourescent bulb issue. Consumers tried to compare Leds vs fluorescentes via their wattage rather than their lumens. So I think wattage is not what I should look at but rather the max temp achieved.

The Weller seems to reach 900F with 5 positions where I think the first and last are 5 and 40w.

The hakko does the same temperature.

So I'm not sure what else to compare. The price point is way different but if there were a real difference in favor of the digital I would go for it.
I have had Weller in the past, good irons but too expensive for repairs, i would go with the Hakko as i have one, here is a breakdown of the FX888d.

http://jestineyong.com/hakko-fx-888d-29by-soldering-iron-repair/
 

MaxHeadRoom

Joined Jul 18, 2013
22,855
With the WLC100 it can't get much simpler, as before just a simple triac circuit, half a dozen components.
The tips are different than earlier models also, just solid copper, no sensor.
The Hakko should give a little better heat control, maybe.
Max.
 

Wolframore

Joined Jan 21, 2019
2,260
I have never had to open up my Hakko I’m pretty sure it’s about 5-7 yrs old. Love it. Heats up quick and holds temperature. I had a Weller for a long time but I dropped it one too many times. Never got around to fixing it.

The blue and yellow Hakko looks like a toy but isn’t. The Weller is a classic but could be better.
 

MrSoftware

Joined Oct 29, 2013
2,013
I just picked up the Hakko fx-888d and it works nice. I've only used it for a couple of reworks so far, the tip that it comes with initially appears to be a little on the broad side but worked great for me on a bunch of 0603 sized parts. There are lots of tips on the market. The digital interface initially seems clunky, but if you take a few minutes to learn it, it's really not bad. You can set the temp manually, or program in up to 5 favorite preset temps to quickly scroll through. I myself don't use more than 2 or 3 temps on 99% of what I do so that's all I programmed in, and selecting the pre-programmed temps is easy. I haven't used the Weller but the brand in general has a good reputation, and I had a different Weller iron that was well made and worked fine. This might help:

 

KeithWalker

Joined Jul 10, 2017
1,685
I have never had to open up my Hakko I’m pretty sure it’s about 5-7 yrs old. Love it. Heats up quick and holds temperature. I had a Weller for a long time but I dropped it one too many times. Never got around to fixing it.

The blue and yellow Hakko looks like a toy but isn’t. The Weller is a classic but could be better.
I used Weller irons for over 50 years but always found the spare parts and tips to be expensive. When my last one died a couple of years ago I looked around for alternatives. After reading many consumer reports, I bought a replacement blue and yellow Hakko handle, element and tips online for a few dollars and designed and built my own control station. It cost very little and has an accurate digital readout (using a $2.00, 2.5 to 10.0 volt readout DVM module. I am really happy with the results. I use it regularly. All kinds of inexpensive spare tips are available online.
I definitely recommend Hakko.SolderingStation 002.jpg
 
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MrSoftware

Joined Oct 29, 2013
2,013
One of the places I work sometimes has a metcal, it works great, very nice to use especially for small work. Very expensive though, and you change the temperature by changing the tips.
 

MaxHeadRoom

Joined Jul 18, 2013
22,855
I guess a lot depends on the type of usage, mine has gone from professional use to what amount to a virtual hobby now.
When my old faithful Weller packed in I picked up the cheap WLC100 for a replacement, so far it has worked well for a replacement in this area.
Takes a while to heat up though, unless set to maximum initially.
Max.
 

eduncan911

Joined Nov 14, 2011
29
I personally upgraded my workstation to the Atten 50W many many years ago and it's been going strong. It uses Hakko-style tips and i even think the same cable.

https://www.adafruit.com/product/3565

The main reasons for me were cost and flexibility in repairs (I tend to keep things for decades). These are inexpensive compared to Hakko and has paid for itself many times over.

Only complaints I have would be that:

* handle & wire are extremely lightweight. Being so light I find myself holding it with little pressure and sometimes it slips - while hot! Maybe it is just me, not being used to a remote base as I've used heavier handhelds for 40+ years.

* The wire isn't heat proof (daughter accidentally melted it with a brief touch - again, because it's so light and can get in your way sometimes if not careful).

Almost want a nice weighted heavy-duty cable, at the least.

It uses standard BNC-type connectors (I think it's BNC) so easily replaceable and I think even the Hakko ones fit? I may solder up my own heavy gauge cable, now that I think of it. Like a thick microphone cable or something.
 
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rsjsouza

Joined Apr 21, 2014
301
I have a Hakko FX888 (not D) which is a pleasure to use, especially when I bought the extra tips for various types of work. Whatever the brand you choose, just be sure to buy original parts, as the materials make a huge difference.

I use at work some stations that use the T12/T13/T15 tips (the ones with a heater built-in) and they do the job quite efficiently. Too expensive for a hobby, fortunately there are some cheaper stations that accept the same cartridges. I have my eye on a Bakon 950D just because the price and build seem reasonable enough.

There is a recent long discussion below:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/reviews/hakko-still-the-best-option-for-a-hobbyist-soldering-station/
 
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