The Weller TCP range of soldering irons are a selection of Magnastat temperature control products that adapt and change their characteristics once specific temperatures are reached. These irons employ a permanent magnet that triggers the power supply switch. The temperature required to trigger this function is regulated by a set of several variable copper-produced soldering tips, each of which will heat to a predetermined temperature. This range of accurate soldering tips enable different soldering applications to be undertaken and Weller's TCP range has long been considered the industry standard for many soldering tasks.
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Set the Correct Temperature
The Weller TCP range of irons can be used on applications with different heat requirements so it is important that the user understands the process and sets an appropriate regulatory temperature depending on the purpose. All soldering materials melt below 250,248 degrees C centigrade (the maximum temperature available with a Weller TCP iron) but there are lower heats to suit particular uses. Minor and simple applications such as calculator assembly or television repairs require heat settings of between 121 and 137 degrees C centigrade, whereas more specialised applications like plate work or the production of film capacitors can require more intense heats of between 148 and 193 degrees C centigrade. Predetermining the correct temperature for the task will help to ensure an effective result.
Apply Solder Between Tip and Joint
There is a specific way to apply the solder using the TCP iron in order to achieve the best results. It involves heating the solder joint for a period of time (depending on the join and the application) before applying the solder material between the joint and the tip. This is opposed to applying the solder to the tip then soldering the joint, as this process causes poor and incomplete joints. The reason for this is that the temperature regulation only affects the soldering iron once the set and optimum heat is reached, and prior to that the tip will heat quickly and require the precise application of the solder for the best results.
Always Use a Soldering Stand
As the TCP soldering iron is temperature-regulated, it is often sold individually without an accompanying soldering stand. A soldering stand is usually manufactured from coiled metal and its purpose is to provide a safe and heat-resistant place to keep the iron while not in use. Although the TCP iron reacts and reduces heat or power while idle and in line with the temperature regulation, the stand can still perform a useful safety option for interrupted use or in any instance where the tool malfunctions. They are affordable items and are a reasonable purchase to maximise a user's safety while soldering.
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