soldering iron & advice for magnifier

From: Tom Uban <>
Date: Fri May 14 22:53:29 2004

>I'm not familiar with Metcal units. How would the MX1 compare with the
>Weller WES51 I recently bought?

I don't know much about the WES51, but the Metcal is an RF driven device
and it heats up immediately and maintains the temperature of the specific
tip very well. The tips are as easy to change as sliding one out and
another on in. The full model number of the unit I purchased is an
Metcal MX-500P-11, and I paid $250. My understanding is that there are
a couple of Metcal models to avoid, possibly the SP200, but I'm not
certain. I have a couple if different tips, including a very fine conical
tip and a fine J tip which is good for removing parts.

>Also, I have a lamp magnifier... one of those lighted magnifiers on a elbow
>arm you clamp to your desk. Invaluable to me for small work. Mine is missing
>one of the two springs, so I'm out looking for a new one. I found a truely
>nice one for $55 that has two separate flourescent bulbs on each side (I
>strongly prefer flourescent lights for that rather than the cheap
>incandescent units). I'm thinking these would have to be better than a
>stereo microscope (which I've never used)??? Wouldn't it be hard to position
>boards and such under that?

They make a nice stand for the stereo microscope which allows the board to
be placed pretty much anywhere under the lens. They also have a very high
intensity lamp which runs through a flexible light pipe so that you can
position it and aim it where you need it. I don't have either of these, but
my friend does and they are both nice. I will probably have to find both
at some point.

The nice thing about the microscope is that you can really magnify down
to the nitty gritty and see what you need to see.

Received on Fri May 14 2004 - 22:53:29 BST

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