Hakko Solder Stations

Overview

Denhac has two Hakko adjustable temperature soldering stations, one older with a knob to set temperature, one newer digital. There is also a Metcal suitable for finer detail work with it’s own wiki page.

After reading and understanding this page, you are authorized to use them.

Setting Temperature

For tin/lead solder, 600 ℉ (315 ℃) is a good starting point. For lead free, 700 ℉ (370 ℃). It’s OK to turn it up a bit more, but keep it below 800 ℉. Higher temperatures will degrade the tip quickly. The older iron is ready to use when the red light is no longer solid. The digital one displays actual temperature as it warms up.

Cleaning the tip

The soldering iron stands have sponges. Wipe the iron tip on a wet sponge, there is a bottle of distilled water available. There is also bronze wool that can be used. These are the only two ways tips should be cleaned.

Safety

  • Don’t touch the metal parts of the iron until cooled sufficiently. They will cause severe burns.
  • Safety glasses are advised. You don’t want molten metal in your eye. Solder can splatter as a connection is pulled apart.
  • Use the fume extractor fan. Place it near the work, you should be able to see the flux fumes being pulled into it.
  • Most of the solder contains lead. Wash your hands after handling, keep the work area clean of solder particles. Denhac stocks lead free solder (AIM REL22) which you may choose if you wish to avoid lead.
  • The soldering iron should always be either in the stand or held in your hand. Never set it down elsewhere.
  • Turn off the soldering iron when leaving the room or not using for more than 10 minutes. They heat quickly. Turning them off also preserves the tips.
  • Keep the area around what you are soldering clean and clutter free. The soldering iron can ignite paper and some other materials.
  • Stabilize your work. Helping hands and a stickvise (great for holding small circuit boards) are available.

Proper Use

  • The soldering tip is not to be used as a pry bar. Only light pressure is necessary. The tips have a copper core and thin iron plating. Once the iron is cracked or worn through, the copper will begin to dissolve into the solder.
  • To do: find a good how to solder video, add link
  • Be a good neighbor, leave the tip tinned and clean

Files & External Resources

Location

Electronics Room

History

Ownership

Denhac

Metcal MX Solder Station

Replacement tips are $25. Please don’t scrape or pry with them. Use the other solder station if you are in doubt or new to soldering. See the Hakko wiki page for safety, tip cleaning information. After reading and understanding both of these wiki pages, you are authorized to use it.

Setting temperature

Temperature is set by the tip cartridge:

  • STTC-5xx: 500 ℉
  • STTC-0xx: 600 ℉
  • STTC-1xx: 700 ℉

The Metcal MX is an RF heated iron, powered by 13.56 MHz AC. The tips contain a tiny induction heater. The part being heated by that has a curie point (temperature where it stops being magnetic) at the temperature rating of the cartridge, so it quits heating at that point.

Changing tips

Do not remove tips with the power on. This can damage the power supply. The ideal way to change a tip is with a silicone hot pad. Alternately, pliers can gently be used on the part closest to the grip (not the actual soldering tip but the stainless steel tube). In either case, pull the tip straight out, place it somewhere heat resistant. Insert the new tip by pushing the tip against the rubber soldering mat to fully seat it.

Location

Electronics Room