How can I tell if a solder sucker is good?

Thread Starter

rambomhtri

Joined Nov 9, 2015
317
Hi. I purchased a solder sucker 2 weeks ago on-line. It was all aluminum and black. It costed $8. I've received today the sucker, but it's not at all the one I ordered, it has plastic parts and it's different. I'm gonna tell this to the vendor, and hope it sends me the one I ordered without much trouble. I've tested this one and, although it sucks things (I've tried it with little pieces of paper), I don't think it's strong at all. I remember I played like 6 years ago with a solder sucker a friend had, and I remember that it "hurt" when you put it on your hand and pressed the button. It sucked the skin strong enough to make you feel uncomfortable. It was also made of aluminum, I don't know why, but I remember it quite well. Once you pressed the button, the sucker would stay stuck to your hand, and you could have it hanging downwards.
With this sucker they have sent me, I can't do that at all, I barely feel when I press the button putting it over my hand, and of course it does not hang, it has no force at all to stay stuck on my skin. The dimensions of the two are the same, as well as their weight. Now my question is: Should a solder sucker behavior as I've described the one I remember? What can you do to test a sucker and know it's good enough?
This is the one they've sent me:

And this is the one I ordered
 
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Thread Starter

rambomhtri

Joined Nov 9, 2015
317
I've replaced the second solder sucker by the actual one I ordered. Yeah, the best way is to test is to use it to suck actual solder, but I'm not working on anything right now. I wouldn't like neither to dirty the sucker I may be have to send back.
So... shouldn't it have enough force to support itself if you release the plunger with your finger over the tip?
 

GopherT

Joined Nov 23, 2012
8,012
I've replaced the second solder sucker by the actual one I ordered. Yeah, the best way is to test is to use it to suck actual solder, but I'm not working on anything right now. I wouldn't like neither to dirty the sucker I may be have to send back.
So... shouldn't it have enough force to support itself if you release the plunger with your finger over the tip?
No. It should only have enough to lift a bead of solder off of your pcb.
 

Thread Starter

rambomhtri

Joined Nov 9, 2015
317
@rambomhtri
If the tip was made of aluminum, it would draw heat out of the solder instantly and cool the solder before you suck it up. Check the one you have, does it leak as described above?
It does not leak, but I feel it's so weak. I know there's a huge difference between this one and the one I saw like 6 years ago. The force of the sucker really should matter, I think...
 

Thread Starter

rambomhtri

Joined Nov 9, 2015
317
Can you test if your suckers hang from your finger if you release the plunge with your finger on the tip? Does it feel uncomfortable?
 

Alec_t

Joined Sep 17, 2013
11,105
Whether or not the sucker will hang from you finger depends, among other things, on the diameter of the nozzle tip. Even a non-leaky sucker won't hang if the tip is very small.
 

Thread Starter

rambomhtri

Joined Nov 9, 2015
317
Whether or not the sucker will hang from you finger depends, among other things, on the diameter of the nozzle tip. Even a non-leaky sucker won't hang if the tip is very small.
Oh, that's right, nice point! Nevertheless I think the dimens ions of mine are pretty standard, and that mean we can compare all of them and there should be little to no differences.
 

MrSoftware

Joined Oct 29, 2013
1,738
I mention this only because I didn't know they existed myself until a short time ago so just in case you're also unaware; I recently acquired one of these solder suckers, and WOW does it make things easier! I've only removed a few through hole devices with it at this point, it was the easiest desoldering I've ever done. If your budget allows, and it fits your use-case, this is or something similar is worth considering IMHO:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00KQ6PR6K?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00

Review by Dave Jones:

 

Thread Starter

rambomhtri

Joined Nov 9, 2015
317
Wow, that desoldering gun is awesome. I've already seen one in a YouTube video. It seems the easiest and fastest way to do it. But, lol, it's $150, and I just spend $25 in a soldering station and I thought it was kind of expensive.
 

ian field

Joined Oct 27, 2012
6,539
I've replaced the second solder sucker by the actual one I ordered. Yeah, the best way is to test is to use it to suck actual solder, but I'm not working on anything right now. I wouldn't like neither to dirty the sucker I may be have to send back.
So... shouldn't it have enough force to support itself if you release the plunger with your finger over the tip?
The PTFE nozzle will form to the way you use it - so the way it lifts solder will improve with use.

They usually have an O-ring on the piston - a light smear of silicone grease helps.

Don't use any hydrocarbon lubricant - any ABS plastics in the construction will disintegrate!
 

Thread Starter

rambomhtri

Joined Nov 9, 2015
317
I'm sending it back, and I got to wait again like 10 days :oops:

OK, I've released the plunge with the tip covered by my finger, it stops like at half of the way, but then it starts slowly, like doing little jumps, to recover to its original position. That is not normal, right?

As long as I keep covering the hole so no air can enter to the cylinder, it should stay in the same position, right?
 

ian field

Joined Oct 27, 2012
6,539
I'm sending it back, and I got to wait again like 10 days :oops:

OK, I've released the plunge with the tip covered by my finger, it stops like at half of the way, but then it starts slowly, like doing little jumps, to recover to its original position. That is not normal, right?

As long as I keep covering the hole so no air can enter to the cylinder, it should stay in the same position, right?
They're never perfect - that should lift solder quite adequately.

Its not just the nozzle that wears in with use, its like a new car engine - you have to run it in before you start thrashing it.
 
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