Soldering Iron Shootout

About a year ago I was teaching an after-work intro electronics class, and I picked up a couple of cheap Yihua 947-II soldering irons for giveaways.

There was some discussion about other lower cost alternatives, so I decided to get in a few low-cost options, to compare, including a Quicko 951-T12 (Hakko clone) and the very popular TS100 battery powered iron.

Here’s my results of the comparison.

2 Replies to “Soldering Iron Shootout”

  1. Scott, my name is Willem Braat from the Netherlands. I found you serial gauge and built it on my breadboard. I changed the polarity of the serial receiver (I plan to drive it straight from an arduino), and I have 2 steppers (a double stepper from Juken). The controllers were programmed “A” and “B”.
    Probably I am doing something wrong . When I power the devices and send A! and B! they neatly reset to the mechanical stop. So communication works. When I send A150 the stepper positions accordingly. But when I send A50 afterwards it does not return to position “50” but increases… From the documentation I conclude that the number that is sent is an absolute value….or not? I hope you can give me a hint…

    Kind regards, Willem

    1. You’re correct in that it’s an absolute value.

      As for the issues you may be having, make sure you’re using the libraries I supply, especially the softwareserial — which allows for a receive only pin, and isn’t tying up an address with transmit.

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