Morning Guys, Need Suggestion On Soldering Iron

Discussion in 'Gear Chat' started by LessPawl, Jul 12, 2019.

  1. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    Good morning guys,

    Happy Friday. Having 4 more weeks of downtime in front of me, I've decided to upgrade pickups in several of my guitars. I had a nice soldering station that i never used. Unfortunately, it appears as if in one of our mad cleaning Saturday's, it was disposed of. I've since forgotten what the specs were on that iron.

    Can you guys suggest a decent soldering iron for me, and anything else I'll need. I've never changed my own pickups before. We have a guy at the place where I jam who's a really good guitar tech, who does this type of work for really fair prices. However, I figure it'd be as good a time as any to "dig in" a little and give it a go.

    Since I consider many of you here, true experts, compared to me, I figured I'd throw this out here. I appreciate any and all help.

    Thank you
     
  2. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    Flux capacitor BUMPAGE
     
  3. Mickey

    Mickey Gandalf the Intonationer

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    My suggestion would be do NOT buy a soldering iron.
    Instead buy a Soldering Station. There are many benefits
    To a man of your means, I would recommend a "Weller" brand soldering station.
    Weller is the Rolls-Royce of soldering equipment.
    I have three different Weller stations. The newest is about 30 years old.
    Before I retired, I used them every day.
    I can still get replacement parts.
    You can get chinese stations for less money but can you get replacement parts for them next year.

    Oh, and one other point.... the soldering tip on a station will be grounded. The tip on a soldering
    iron may or may not be grounded. If you are doing things like building pedals, an ungrounded
    iron can destroy your work before you ever apply power. Why? Static electricity.
     

  4. Fat Jack

    Fat Jack Well-Known Member

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    This also a multimeter and wirecutters
     
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  5. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    thanks Jack, I'm set on those two, appreciate it
     
  6. Chad

    Chad Well-Known Member

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    Hakko or Weller soldering stations are the way to go!
     
  7. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    Thanks, Chad
     
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  8. Believer

    Believer Well-Known Member

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    Well, it depends. Hakko or Wellers are great, and will last a lifetime. Chinese knock-offs may not match the quality or durability, but they will do a reasonably good job of the type of light-duty soldering involved with pickups and pots in guitars. If price is not a major consideration, by all means, go the Hakko or Weller route. If you are just going to swap a few pups out in the next few weeks and then put it up for a few years, maybe the cheap knock-off would make more sense.

    Also, what is the probability of another "mad cleaning Saturday" occurring to put you back in the same situation?
     
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  9. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    thanks for the suggestion. As far as the cleaning goes, I'm making a serious effort to keep my better half out of the man cave....LOL.
     
  10. Chocol8

    Chocol8 Well-Known Member

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    I would suggest a Hakko or Hakko clone. Parts and tips readily available yet priced in the cheap Chinese range. The one I use is a Hakko 936 clone and is over 5 years old now with no issues. It was cheap enough that if it bursts into flames tomorrow I won’t mind. Even a real Hakko 936 can be found for under $60 and a clone can go for $20-30. Moving up to digital will cost a bit more, but won’t solder any better.

    To make pots and pickup covers easier, get something with 60+ watts and also larger tips. Thermostat control and smaller tips are useful for the little things, especially if you are ever going to do any amp or pedal work, or active onboard electronics.
     
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  11. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    Good info, I appreciate that. thanks
     
  12. bc rich

    bc rich Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Money spent on quality name brand tips will pay off if you buy a clone .
    chinese tips are cheap for a reason , can cause frustration.
     
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  13. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    Thanks, that's good to know.
     
  14. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    With Amazon "Prime Days" coming up the 15th and 16th, I think I'll hold off and see if they have any deals on the real thing. Ebay has a bunch of clones, if i can't grab a deal on the real thing, clone it shall be. Thanks for everything, fellas.
     
  15. mozz

    mozz Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Weller. Been military certified soldering since 1980, and was never in the military.

    Would not hesitate to try a cheap Chinese soldering station for what you are doing. May even pick one up myself once I read up a bit on brands and models.

    That being said, I don't think you need 60 watts, quality of some pots today are terrible and you will ruin them. Learn some soldering basics if you're a beginner, not to overheat etc.
     
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  16. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    Thanks mozz. I am a newb at soldering and have a lot to learn, i appreciate it.
     
  17. Mickey

    Mickey Gandalf the Intonationer

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    The reason I have three soldering stations is that one is 0 to 20 watts, one is 0 to 40 watts and the third is 0 to 60 watts.
    Also have a 100/140 watt gun. The idea being to match the tool to the job. The last thing you want is a tool too big
    or too little for the job.
     
  18. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    Thanks, Mickey
     
  19. eldos1

    eldos1 Well-Known Member

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    I would also suggest "silver soder" as I have found that I don't need to apply as much heat to get a nice flow when working on Pots and such.
     
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  20. LessPawl

    LessPawl Well-Known Member Supporting Member+ Gold Supporting Member

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    thanks eldos
     

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