JColvin91 @ instructables.com writes:
I recently got a collection of soldering iron tips and realized that many people (including myself) might not know what the different tips are used for. After all, for a long time I was under the impression that there was only about three different types of soldering tips and only one useful type of tip.
While I still only use two different types of tips (an improvement), I am much more familiar and confident in using whatever soldering iron tip I may happen to find on the iron. Please know that is far from a comprehensive list of all the different types of soldering tips available, but rather a small handful that I am personally prone to use.
Uses of Different Soldering Iron Tips - [Link]
by Henrik’s Blog @ hforsten.com:
Nowadays many of the most “exiting” chips come only in leadless packages, such as BGA and QFN which are hard or impossible to solder just by soldering iron, because leads are under the chip where they can’t be reached. These kinds of chips are usually soldered using reflow soldering. In reflow process solder paste is used instead of solder wire. It contains very small balls of solder in flux, diameter of the balls is just few micrometers. First this paste is put on the contact pads, then components are placed on the pads and whole board is heated in reflow oven where solder balls in the paste melt and attaches the components firmly in place.
Toaster oven reflow controller - [Link]
We’ve again reached record attendance of our webinar! More than 100 registered patricipants and 4 winners of Weller products.
Last webinar before summer was dedicated to Weller. Rudolf Horl from Weller prepared interesting information about new soldering station WSD81i, as well as other information about various functions or tips concerning care about soldering station and tips.
Record from SOS webinar – Mastership in soldering - [Link]
Solderdoodle is a portable, cordless, USB rechargeable soldering iron. Solarcycle @ instructables.com writes:
After learning how to use 3D printers, one of my friends asked if there was such a thing as a USB soldering iron and I said that I had instructions to build one, but the battery was external. I then realized that I could create my own case design on a 3D printer and put the battery, charge controller, and other parts inside as one single unit! It worked! .stp files for the case are provided below.
Solderdoodle: Open Source USB Rechargeable Soldering Iron - [Link]
Geir Andersen over at LetsMakeRobots has designed and built this cool solder paste dispenser:
As I’m doing SMD prototypes I wanted to do reflow soldering instead of hand soldering and needed a solder paste dispenser.
The professional ones are not that expensive but you need an air compressor and I was trying to avoid that extra cost and noise. So I came up with this design.
It uses a PICAXE M14 microcontroller and ULN2003 Darlington driver to run the 28BYJ-48 stepper motor. As a stepper the 28BYJ-48 sucks with its gear ratio, but for this purpose it is cheap and has lot of torque. For my type of work and one-off prototypes it works great.
DIY solder paste dispenser - [Link]
Diogoc shared his Hakko T12 soldering controller in the project log forum:
I finally finished my Hakko T12 soldering controller.
Thanks to sparkybg and arhi for all help and sugestions.
Some features of the controller:
- 3310 graphic display
- rotary encoder for easy and fast temperature selection
- sleep mode when the iron is in the stand
- turn off when a long time in sleep mode
- audible indications
- intuitive menu navegation
- percentage visualization of output power
- powered by a compact and lightweight 24V dc laptop power supply
- ambient temperature sensor for a better cold junction compensation
- lcd backlight control
- alarm for very high temperature, turning off immediately the heater
- indication of tip removed to allow hot swapping the tips
- bootloader for easy firmware upgrade via integrated usb port
- usb port and c# software to monitoring all parameters and help to adjust the pid parameters
The controller still need a little adjust in the PID parameters but for me it is almost perfect.
Hakko T12 soldering controller - [Link]
Just a short video to show how I hand solder a ceramic leadless chip carrier (CLCC) package to a circuit board, in this case, a Si570. Typical surface mount soldering techniques, including the use of flux, fine gauge solder, and a fine tipped iron.
How to solder a leadless ceramic surface mount package - [Link]
This page provides documents about a cheap SMD solder station built as an Arduino shield (Arduino UNO). It supports active soldering tips from Weller (RT series) which contain the heating element as well as a sensor and provides a standard 3.5 mm jack. Together with the corresponding female connector you will get a compact SMD soldering iron (see pictures below) with very fast heat up times of a few seconds.
SMD Soldering Station for Weller Soldering Tips - [Link]
Carlazar posted pictures of his simple soldering iron driver (SSID) with Arduino PID control. [via]
Main features are:
- Any thermocouple type irons.
- Additional control mode: On-Off controller (besides PID PWM).
- External power supply: Some standard Notebook power supply DC 19V, 4.74A.
- Small dimensions: It fits into 90mm x 110mm x 45mm (WxDxH) box.
- Easy to assemble.
- Simple design: only a few components (besides Arduino).
The HQ soldering iron HQ20/HQ30 (24V, 48W) was used. It has the E-type thermocouple built in (68uV/degC) but you can change that value in software according to the soldering iron that is used (for example K-type is 41uV/degC).
Simple soldering iron driver (SSID) with Arduino PID control - [Link]