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Brand New Soldering Iron Stopped working after 15 minutes!

 
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Capn Trips
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Joined: 03 Oct 2003
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 08, 2009 12:55 pm    Post subject: Brand New Soldering Iron Stopped working after 15 minutes! Reply with quote

After our earlier discussion about soldering irons, I broke down and bought a Weller WLC100 on Amazon, and had an opportunity to "break it in" today, trying to conduct a simple repair of a broken connector for a Laptop Power Supply.

It all worked fine for about 15 minutes, but after that, the iron simply does not heat up any more. I've got the WLC100 base station plugged into a wall socket, and the SPG40 iron plugged into the base station. I have ranged the dial from 0 up to 5, but on no setting does it heat up.

I have not changed any connection or setting, one minute it is working (I tinned the tip and made a practice connection between two wires) and the next, it is not. All plugs are plugged in the same, and the light is on the base station when I flip the switch. It simply stopped heating up.

I've looked all over the thing for an overload or reset switch, but there's nothing there.

It's a brand-new iron. Can anybody please help?
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zaphod7501



Joined: 02 Aug 2004
Posts: 528
Location: Peoria Illinois

PostPosted: Sat Aug 08, 2009 4:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's not too much to do with long distance troubleshooting. Something probably broke or failed. If it was a local dealer, you could run it back in and probably get it exchanged. Getting warranty coverage would cost at least one-way shipping.

For me, I'd grab a meter and start checking continuity on the lead and heating element. (which is a bit fragile since there is usually a ceramic section) There are probably at least 4 pins. 2 would be the heater (low resistance), 2 for a sensor (higher resistance or no measurement). If you can identify the heater connections, then you could check for voltage from the base when "on".

Regardless of measurement results, probably the only thing you could repair would be an open connection somewhere.
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WagonMaster



Joined: 16 Apr 2009
Posts: 337

PostPosted: Sat Aug 08, 2009 5:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Capn,

I've got the same exact model of soldering iron. So if you decide to disassemble and check the continuity and connections and you need a reference from a working model, just holler. I can disassemble mine if it helps you.

Have you checked to see if the iron's plug on the left side has voltage? That's about the only thing I can think of to check that doesn't require disassembly.

Regards,
Bill
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WagonMaster



Joined: 16 Apr 2009
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Capn,

I've taken a few measurements on my (working) Weller WLC100, in case it proves useful....

With the meter's red lead in the larger blade of the 2 plug holes in the AC-like socket on the left side of the base, I measure +2.97 VDC with the temperature control knob set at "1". That voltage drops to +0.58 VDC as you increase the knob from "1" to "5".

The resistance across the 2 leads of the AC-like plug on the end of the soldering iron is 350 ohms.

If you decide to break into the "innards", there are 3 screws, 2 hidden under rubber feet on the left side ("left" as you look at it right-side up, as you'd use it).

Hope that's useful and saves you from a needless return. Good luck!

Bill
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Capn Trips
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 9:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That output on the side is not a true DC voltage. On mine it's 110 v AC and is fine.

My problem is in the iron itself and not in the base station. It was showing about 500K ohms! I figure that the iron has to have a high resistance to generate the heat required, but that seems awfully high.

I read a second (non-Weller) iron just to get a sens of order of magnitude and it was in the 350-500 ohm range (like yours), so I guess the problem is internal to the iron. I took it apart as much as possible, and read directly across the wires that disappear into the ceramic in the tip end of the iron and that is where I have the virtual open (480 K ohms.) so I suppose I burned out the iron in those first 10 minutes of use.

Seems pretty flimsy.
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READ BEFORE POSTING or your post will be DELETED!


Remotes:Atlas OCAP URC 1056, Harmony One, OFA XSight Touch, AR XSight Touch
TVs: Panasonic TH-50PE700U; LG 65" Smart LED TV; RCVR: Pioneer VSX-D2016S;Onkyo TX-SR875
DVD/VCR: LG Blu-Ray player, Pioneer DV-400VK (multi-region DVD), Sony BDP-S350 (Blu-ray), Toshiba HD-A1 (HD-DVD), Panasonic AG-W1 (Multi-system VCR);
Laserdisc/CD changer: Pioneer CLD-704.
Streaming: Intel NUC PC
(But I still have to get up for my beer)
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