Soldering iron comparison (antex info pls)

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by Armagguedes, Jul 20, 2007.

  1. Armagguedes

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 17, 2007

    I am currently considering buying an Hakko 937 soldering station for normal work, since it can be used with lead-free and has temperature control (digital). It also comes relatively recommended from these and other fora.

    My first soldering iron was a Weller pen btw, but i don't especially like it: it gets pretty hot and the tip went south pretty quick. In fact, i destroyed my Weller tips with dessoldering wick, during some old hardware dessoldering.

    In order not to bust another iron (since my new investment will be considerable), i was thinking of getting my hands on a regular iron to do some not-delicate heavy-work, and leave the Hakko for projects.

    I was thinking of getting a regular ANTEX iron, since it is a pretty good/reliable iron and is not excessively expensive (i also can find a lot of places with bits for it). I was looking at the TCS230 (with a silicone rubber cable), and an optional 1.0mm bit. What do you think??

    Also, which is better for dessoldering (and why):
    - dessoldering braid/wick?
    - dessoldering pump w/ teflon tip?

    Thanks for your help.

  2. John Luciani

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 3, 2007
    I use an *old* Weller for large mass parts and a Metcal with a small tip for SMD.
    Pictures of all my tools are at

    The braid will cleanup pads (SMD and TH) better. The pump is convenient for larger
    amounts of solder that would consume a lot of braid.

    I use braid and a manual desoldering tool.

    (* jcl *)
  3. Armagguedes

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    Btw i don't use SMD, SMT or whatever acronym for tiny stuff you prefer. I only use thru-hole, and even then i try to use relatively large components, like 1/2W resistors (i have big (butter-)fingers).

  4. mrmeval

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jun 30, 2006
    Use the braid where the braid works and use the extractor where an extractor works.

    If you do a lot of work you will want something to trim the teflon tips as they wear and to have more tips available plus all the other consumables. The smaller extractors are harder to use for some jobs so you may consider having a small one and a larger one on hand. I worked in tight spaces and needed both and the smaller one had more tip sizes available.

    In a good setup for production repair I had several sizes of solder wick, the two sizes of manual extractors with a variety of tips and an excellent metcal station with a shop air driven solder extractor with several tips available. This was for thru hole parts.