Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 40 of 44
  1. #1
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352

    Cheap, but good, soldering iron

    So I have like no budget.... but I want a reliable soldering iron. I would prefer about 80 watts.....

    I have an iron now, but the tip is all gross and black, it wont tin.... it is jsut nasty, and solder wont stick to it, needless to say, it is very difficult to solder with it

    And I know you get what you pay for.... I just don't want to spend a ton, and I want relative quality..... the cheaper, the better

  2. #2
    RC Qualifier
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Posts
    773
    I personally love this one with the replaceable tip:
    http://www.weller-toolsus.com/solder...550.html?buy=1
    There is also this one, I use this for on the go or away from home jobs:
    http://www.weller-toolsus.com/solder...***.html?buy=1
    If you like to have the gun always on go with the second one. The first you have to hold the trigger to heat it up.
    Have Fun and Drive Recklessly

  3. #3
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Greatscott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    N. Idaho... Da Sticks!
    Posts
    7,575
    You can go cheap on a lot of things in this hobby, but two things going cheap on that will lead to nothing but frustration are hex wrenches and soldering irons.

    Most certainly get a Weller, they are great quality, and the heating coil is replaceable (and easy to find). Recommend getting a pencil-style iron, those pistol style can get a little unwieldy for doing the smaller stuff. You can get an 80w Weller for less that $40, and you can get a 80w station for around $65.
    Submarine Qualified, Chief Inducted, Navy Retired

  4. #4
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Jimdog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Iowa City, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    4,359
    The trak power tk-950 works great.
    This will TOTALLY work, saw a guy on YouTube do it

  5. #5
    RC Champion OlorinTharkun's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    near Farmington NM
    Posts
    1,229

    Cheap, but good, soldering iron

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimdog View Post
    The trak power tk-950 works great.
    That one's about $70 at Tower Hobbies right now.

    I bought a Chinese 852D+ solder rework station for less than that on eBay. It has a temp controlled solder iron and temp and flow rate controlled hot air wand. Works great and has enough tips to do anything from computer repair to hobby stuff. Hot air wand is great for heat shrink and also works for desoldering.
    What broke, uh, needs upgrading now?

  6. #6
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    4,083
    Weller 80 watt iron with either the 1/4" tip or the 3/8" tip. I have used this iron professionally for years and have soldered thousands of RC packs with it. Cannot be beat for only $35 or so.

  7. #7
    RC Champion OlorinTharkun's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    near Farmington NM
    Posts
    1,229
    Jakey, what type of solder is best for RC? High silver content or standard lead?
    What broke, uh, needs upgrading now?

  8. #8
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Nitronaught's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    South Florida
    Posts
    19,490
    Let get get this question right.
    Good
    Cheap
    80 Watt Soldering Iron??

    What do you consider cheap?

    If your dealing with todays R/C's and have electric R/C's... Weller Wes51 Average cost $90.00

    Taken care of it will be the only soldering Iron you ever buy.
    All Lives Matter
    United We Stand, Divided We Fall

  9. #9
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    4,083
    Quote Originally Posted by Nitronaught View Post
    Let get get this question right.
    Good
    Cheap
    80 Watt Soldering Iron??

    What do you consider cheap?

    If your dealing with todays R/C's and have electric R/C's... Weller Wes51 Average cost $90.00

    Taken care of it will be the only soldering Iron you ever buy.
    Weller SPG 80L

    Good and cheap at $35. Again, I have professionally soldered and assembled thousands of Nimh packs using this iron and followed up with soldering on thousands of Traxxas and Deans connectors to LiPo packs using the same iron.

    It's cheap, it's good and it works!

    Quote Originally Posted by OlorinTharkun View Post
    Jakey, what type of solder is best for RC? High silver content or standard lead?
    For most of my work I use Radio Shack 60-40 solder. If working on a special project, I pull out the "good" stuff; 63/33 tin/lead solder. It makes for a shiny and strong joint.
    Last edited by Jakey; 02-15-2016 at 04:40 PM.

  10. #10
    Marshal ksb51rl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern NJ
    Posts
    20,525
    Someday I'm going to have to drop a WES51 off at Jakey's house, just to see the raising of his eyebrows.
    Then again, he can probably solder with a hair dryer as well as I can with a soldering station...or even Weller. (See what I did there?)
    Alt-248 on the number pad = °

  11. #11
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    4,083
    Quote Originally Posted by ksb51rl View Post
    Someday I'm going to have to drop a WES51 off at Jakey's house, just to see the raising of his eyebrows.
    Then again, he can probably solder with a hair dryer as well as I can with a soldering station...or even Weller. (See what I did there?)
    When you next visit I will show you a side-x-side pack I built after grading numerous Traxxas Nimh cells on a Competition Electronics matcher and then soldered up a 7-cell matched pack. And yes, I used my "cheap" Weller 80-watt iron.

    Edit: Yes, I saw.
    Last edited by Jakey; 02-15-2016 at 06:30 PM.

  12. #12
    Marshal ksb51rl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern NJ
    Posts
    20,525
    Nothing wrong with either. I suspect the tips available with the 80W are larger than those available for the WES51.
    Alt-248 on the number pad = °

  13. #13
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    4,083
    The 80-watt Weller iron is available with a 1/4" chisel tip. Nearly perfect for all but the smallest wires and items.

  14. #14
    Get best and cheap soldering station iron from http://www.bestoninternet.com/comput...n-electronics/

  15. #15
    RC Qualifier
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Saginaw,MI
    Posts
    355
    My vote goes for the trak power 950 as well, we use that at the hobby shop I work at and it sure is nice


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    RACE IT, BREAK IT, FIX IT, REPEAT!

  16. #16
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    soooo.... time to revisit this

    looking into the trakpower 950 right now or the hakko 888

    weller was also in the searching

    a we51 or 80?

  17. #17
    RC poster
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Edmonds, WA
    Posts
    6
    I've had very good luck with my Weller wlc 100. From tiny wires to big coax cables it does the trick.

  18. #18
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Greatscott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    N. Idaho... Da Sticks!
    Posts
    7,575
    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo74 View Post
    soooo.... time to revisit this

    looking into the trakpower 950 right now or the hakko 888

    weller was also in the searching

    a we51 or 80?
    I really like my Trak Power 950, I do quite a bit of soldering at home, make my own light systems, wire up battery and ESC connectors (Deans mostly), and it works great.

    Tower has these for $60 right now. I do recommend picking up the 3.2mm tips, I prefer those to the 2.4mm it comes with.

    https://www.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...&I=LXATBK&P=ML
    Submarine Qualified, Chief Inducted, Navy Retired

  19. #19
    Marshal ksb51rl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern NJ
    Posts
    20,525
    For the widest selection and availability of tips, adjustability of temperature, impeccability of reputation, and value of product, I don’t think you can beat the Weller WES51. It is what I chose.
    Alt-248 on the number pad = °

  20. #20
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    Quote Originally Posted by ksb51rl View Post
    For the widest selection and availability of tips, adjustability of temperature, impeccability of reputation, and value of product, I don’t think you can beat the Weller WES51. It is what I chose.
    went and looked at it today, it's only 50 watts

    also saw my local Fry's had the Hakko FX888D, for $10 cheaper than the Weller 51.... they did have tons of tips in stock and on hand for that one as well....

    The Hakko seems like a good unit as well, seems pretty highly regarded on these forums ~$100

  21. #21
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    Well, I got impatient.....

    Ordered a Hakko FX888D off Amazon. It will be here today.

  22. #22
    Marshal ksb51rl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern NJ
    Posts
    20,525
    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo74 View Post
    went and looked at it today, it's only 50 watts

    also saw my local Fry's had the Hakko FX888D, for $10 cheaper than the Weller 51.... they did have tons of tips in stock and on hand for that one as well....

    The Hakko seems like a good unit as well, seems pretty highly regarded on these forums ~$100
    Only 50 Watts...were you planning on soldering some stained glass? 50 Watts properly delivered is more than you will need for any RC-related soldering.
    The Hakko is indeed well-regarded. It is a good choice.
    Alt-248 on the number pad = °

  23. #23
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    Got it :-)

    I will be soldering some xt90 connectors and 10 gauge superworm wire from acer racing soon

  24. #24
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    so.... I want to pick up some solder now..... not sure what is the best to get. I don't want some cheapo, made in China of questionable stuff. I want lead in it.. I have heard Kester may be what I want, but when I try to look them up, come up with tons of part numbers, for what appears to be the same product. the 63/37 is what I have read about as being the best. with a 2-3% rosin core.

    Also, my instruction manual says htere are 2 little sponges that go in the slits that re cut out, I didn't get those? I have already contacted the seller, and asked a question on Amazon. I tried looking for those seperatley, and cant find a picture of them anywehre.

    I am also going to pick up a pack of 5 different tips for it, and also some tip cleaner paste in a tub.

    I tend to destroy tips, because I am horrible at doing the proper maintenance

  25. #25
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    Here are the little sponges I am missing

  26. #26
    RC Champion lektro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Virginia Beach/ South USA !
    Posts
    1,922
    Nice looking Iron! Looks to like they just forgot to cut the holes out on your sponge. All I do with my sponge is just dampen it and wipe off the iron after each solder.


    Just checked out different solders. Seems 60 tin / 40 lead is the way to go. Its even safer than lead free as far as breathing the fumes. Of course we all try and prevent that don't we.
    With the 60/40 you have more flex in your joints from movement. With the lead free it is a bit more hard which makes it a bit brittle and could snap the joint. Unlikely but there is that possibility.
    Last edited by lektro; 12-27-2017 at 12:22 PM.
    Choose Life !!!

  27. #27
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    the holes were cut out of my sponge, but the little pieces weren't there... anyways, the seller on amazon went and checked, and said they are supposed to be in the bag (my bag was sealed) so they just weren't in there. He shipped some off for me.was looking @.

    63/37 is what I want. and not lead-free, because lead-free sucks

    looking @ the Kester brand, but not sure which to get, seems they have a lot of 63/37 with tons of different part numbers, for what appears to be the same product?

  28. #28
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    Well, here is what I just ordered....

  29. #29
    RC Champion lektro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Virginia Beach/ South USA !
    Posts
    1,922
    [QUOTE=jimbo74;6424109]Well, here is what I just ordered....


    I noticed that yesterday myself. Kester must be a big supplier of soldering products. Not cheap either. I ordered some myself. 60/40 rosin core.

    They made the pic look as if they just cut the smaller pieces out of the larger sponge. I guess they sit in water to keep the larger sponge damp longer? happy soldering!
    Choose Life !!!

  30. #30
    Marshal ksb51rl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern NJ
    Posts
    20,525
    I typically use 60/40 for ease of soldering. I’ve never used a eutectic solder so am interested in what you think about it.
    IMO, getting the solder joint right is much more important than the solder material used, but a superior solder combined with skilled application is obviously the best case.
    Alt-248 on the number pad = °

  31. #31
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    it does look like those pieces are just cut out of the larger sponge, but I never saw them in my package, and the sponge was in a sealed pack..... the Amazon seller is sending me one....

    from a bunch of looking on the net about RC soldering, Kester appears to be top notch stuff, not the no name, ebay stuff made of questionable alloys -- and I got th 63/37 which is supposed to be even that much better than the regular 60/40

  32. #32
    RC Qualifier JatoTheRipper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    773
    $8 for a 60-watt iron is the best cheap one you will find: https://www.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...&I=LXPR36&P=ML

    If you want to spend more the TrakPower TK-950 will do most everything you need to do in RC: https://www.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...&I=LXATBK&P=ML

  33. #33
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    already way past that dude

  34. #34
    RC Champion lektro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Virginia Beach/ South USA !
    Posts
    1,922
    Speaking of the Ripper , My soldering iron just arrived this morning. I guess I can take the one I have been using back to work...lol Kester solder is on the way. I am thinking the 63/37 may have a bit more rosin in it.

    Dang Ripper 80 dollars at High Rise. I got it for 65 shipped.......Straight from the jungle!!!!!!!!!
    Last edited by lektro; 12-28-2017 at 02:13 PM.
    Choose Life !!!

  35. #35
    RC Champion lektro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Virginia Beach/ South USA !
    Posts
    1,922
    I am still working on my skills, but getting much better with every solder I make. I will Probably go solder crazy as soon as my solder gets here.... Practice makes perfect.
    Choose Life !!!

  36. #36
    Marshal ksb51rl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern NJ
    Posts
    20,525
    I didn’t see any flux in your list. I like to use the liquid type applied via a needle tip applicator bottle.
    Alt-248 on the number pad = °

  37. #37
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    not using any, the solder is rosin core, and better than regular 60/40

    also, I will be using tinner on the tips, and they are also pre-tinned... the tinner is lead free, but is also flux as to what I have heard....

    going to use the smaller chisel tip in the 5 pack I got...

    about to start the soldering.....

  38. #38
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    so, those half moon sponge pieces were there, they are not the slits, but inside the slits, still attached, but pre-cut.

    the rx8 does not liek 10 gauge wires....

    the hakko did great. really pleased with it, used the medium chisel tip that came in my extra set of 5 tips I bought. used the tinner, used the sponge, and also the brass mesh stuff too.... made sure not to leave it on too long, the tip still looks awesome, and it is tinned, for storage.... Really like it. using good tools is sooooo nice.... Finally, I am to the point in my older age, that I still want budget, but wont skimp on quality... I go to Harbor Freight a lot, and get stuff, but certain things, I will only go brand name

  39. #39
    RC Qualifier JatoTheRipper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    773
    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo74 View Post
    already way past that dude
    So we are...


  40. #40
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    9,352
    My joints are kind of ugly looking but they're shiny. 10 gauge is hard to work with

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •