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Any comments on the Weller model 8200 soldering gun?

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  • Any comments on the Weller model 8200 soldering gun?

    I need a soldering gun. Lowes has a 100/140 watt soldering gun kit. The gun is a model 8200.

    Any comments? Any recommendations on alternative soldering guns?

    I'm getting ready to fix up a general coverage radio receiver.

    Thanks,
    Dan

  • #2
    Since my shop has been in storage I have been playing with electronics, desoldering pc boards and reclaiming parts, and learning to program micro controllers like the Atmel AVR series.
    IF your talking about working on electronics, you sure you want a soldering gun?
    The best soldering iron I ever used was at my old job, one of those Weller WCTP jobs. They heat up to 700deg is about 15 seconds solder beutiufully. We also had a few desoldering irons that used a vacum pump. Man, I need to find one of those or make my own.
    You could try a pencil iron, 45 watt with a spade tip. If your soldering battery packs or items that act like huge heatsinks and suck all the heat out of the iron you need to use an Iron with a much bigger tip that retains the heat better. A hammer tip works well but the best ones I've used for battery packs are old roofers irons that have a huge hammer head on them.

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    • #3
      Yep, I'm sure I want a soldering gun.

      I already have 2 different sized soldering irons and a soldering station for the light work.

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      • #4
        Hmm, well I have very little to no expirience with the guns, so I cant comment other than I like Weller.

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        • #5
          Sorry BillH. It just dawned on me. I should have said it's a tube radio from the 1950's so it has lots of heavy solder joints in several locations. Thus the need for a soldering gun along with the pencil style soldering irons.

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          • #6
            Weller is a long established brand and I have one of their guns. It still works fine after 35+ years. The dual heat guns are a nice refinement as you can get more wattage for a larger job by just pulling harder on the trigger. And you can make new tips from solid copper wire so tip replacrment is easy on the pocketbook.

            That being said, a 100/140 watt gun, while great for general wiring, would not be my first choice for circuit board work. They were good for tube type cirtuitry: individual wires on individual solder lugs. However, for any but the heaviest PC boards, 100 watts will easily lift the traces from the board. I have even had problems with a 40 watt iron on some boards. And the tip is far too large for modern PC board components.

            I also have one of the WTCP models as Bill mentioned. It is a 40 watt soldering station that has temperature control via the selection of the tips. Each tip is marked with a number that indicates the temperature in hundreds of degrees. For delicate PC board work, the 600 degree tips will work well. For boards with heavier traces or larger components you can use a 700 degree tip. The advantage here is that you have the full 40 watt power available but the tip will not get hot enough to separate the copper trace from the board or damage the component. I have had my WTCP for over 30 years also and it still is going strong. I have seen them left on 24/7/365 and they never quit. Sometimes, with rough use, the cord needs to be replaced but mine is still the original. I even still use the original 30+ year tips. Good tool.

            You will likely need to go to an electronic supply house to buy one. Expect to pay somewhat over $100.

            Paul A.
            Paul A.
            SE Texas

            And if you look REAL close at an analog signal,
            You will find that it has discrete steps.

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            • #7
              As I said before, I have 2 pencil type soldering irons for the lighter work (circuit boards and such). They're different wattages around 30 watts.

              Absolutely no way would I ever use a soldering gun on circuit boards so no problem there.

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              • #8
                I have an old Weller that's probably 40+ years old and another that's about 20 years old that was sold by Sears. Both are still working great. But knowing what product changes go through these days, I wouldn't try to guess on current quality.

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                • #9
                  I did a little more looking around and my ARRL Handbook recommends a 200 watt soldering gun.

                  Where can I get a 200 watt soldering gun?

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                  • #10
                    I Think the problem is that the big tubes act like a large heatsink and zap the heat from the iron. Perhaps you cannot find a 200 watt iron to over come that large heat sink, however like I said before, if you use a large head, perhaps machine a large copper tip for that soldering gun, the larger the mass the better the heat retention, and the tube wont zap the heat out of the iron.
                    I am thinking a copper cylinder shape with two small cylinders sticking out the side that go into the gun for attachment. Silver solder the parts together.

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                    • #11
                      The Weller D550 is a 200/260 watt soldering gun. I just haven't found anyone that carries it.

                      The tubes won't be in the sockets when soldering the socket lugs and wires together. After soldering is complete, I'll plug the tubes back in.

                      Lots of tube socket solder lugs and heavier wiring with tube radios.

                      [This message has been edited by pgmrdan (edited 07-23-2005).]

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                      • #12
                        Try Weller: http://www.cooperhandtools.com/brand...ldering%20Guns

                        Otto

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                        • #13
                          Yep, that's the website I've been looking at. Do they sell direct to the consumer?

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                          • #14
                            The WCTP has an 800* 1/4 tip available.
                            The guns are an ergonomic misfit.
                            Much druthe a high power iron, you can go to 600 watts if need be.

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                            • #15
                              Hi pgmrdan

                              Speaking as an electronics technician who dates his first experience back to the tube era, I can say with absolute certainty that even 100 watts is way over the top for soldering most old time components unless it’s directly to a steel chassis. For what you’re doing, I’m sure you’ll find a simple 45 watt iron more than adequate and even then you’ll probably have to dial back on the heat somewhat using a lamp dimmer or variac to avoid damaging stuff and oxidizing solder on the tip. Just last week I repaired my folk’s stained glass chandelier and even the heavy lead came in that beast required no more than about 40 watts briefly applied to get the job done. Good luck and

                              Kind regards,

                              Jack

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