Author Topic: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures  (Read 7712 times)

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Offline PioB

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Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures
« on: February 20, 2015, 08:18:07 am »
Hi,
someone is selling off a Metcal (most probably, pic is a bit fuzzy, but it has the writing front top left and the switch top middle) SP200 and I wonder if I should try getting it.
I get that Metcal makes nice stations ( http://www.eevblog.com/forum/reviews/what-metcal/msg608536/#msg608536 ) but also that the SP-200 was discontinued quite some time ago. I would use it at home where I have a Weller WECP-20 with a LR-20 handset now. However also there the tips are, if I understand correctly, getting harder to come by unless one takes an adapter and the LR-21 tips. I solder down to TSSOP, but also had a go at some .5 mm pitch connector recently.
Any hints (as well as "wait and get a better station") would be appreciated, I just saw it come up and am wondering if it would be an upgrade...
« Last Edit: February 27, 2015, 05:19:57 am by PioB »
 

Offline nanofrog

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?)
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2015, 01:27:36 pm »
What's the issue with the ET series tips?
Specific profiles discontinued or something?

Also, where you're located can have bearing on a response, such as where to purchase items. If you go into your user profile and set your country, the flag will display.  Makes things a lot easier for you and those responding to your post/s.  ;)
 

Offline PioB

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?)
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2015, 06:09:52 pm »
Hi Nanofrog,

thank you very much for your answer. I bought it and it is on its way to me. The ET-thing might have been a singular opinion of a person in a shop that didn't want to stock older tips anymore, too.

I'll see how it will work for me and shall report back here.

Do the "MFR-Cartridges Series" (MFR-1160 was the replacement for the SP200) work in the SP200? The manual linked from their site https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B3F9Hf1ku1QQUVozZ2hSdFFDX3c/edit is a bit sparse on info and only mentions"600 series and 700 series".

Thank you very much
 

Offline nanofrog

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?)
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2015, 06:32:39 am »
thank you very much for your answer. I bought it and it is on its way to me. The ET-thing might have been a singular opinion of a person in a shop that didn't want to stock older tips anymore, too.
Might be the case.

AFAIK, there's been no announcement of the ET series being discontinued (or the PT series, which IIRC, has been around even longer <tips for Weller's Curie Point stations>).

Do the "MFR-Cartridges Series" (MFR-1160 was the replacement for the SP200) work in the SP200? The manual linked from their site https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B3F9Hf1ku1QQUVozZ2hSdFFDX3c/edit is a bit sparse on info and only mentions"600 series and 700 series".
Yes, the SSC series tips will work with the SP200 station.  :-+

Thermaltronics have an equivalent series of tip that will fit as well IIRC (former Metcal personnel started the company when the patents expired). Even Hakko has just released their own equivalent (can't say for sure, but I wouldn't count on these fitting anything but Hakko).
 

Offline PioB

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?)
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2015, 08:03:14 am »
Thank you very much for the information. I'll have to read more. Digikey seems to only have a few tips available anymore, http://www.digikey.ch/product-search/en?FV=fff40014%2Cfff803e7&k=metcal+ssc&mnonly=0&newproducts=0&ColumnSort=1000011&page=1&stock=0&pbfree=0&rohs=0&quantity=&ptm=0&fid=0&pageSize=25
Mouser also seems to stock only two 700 series chisel tips (T too high for regular solder IIUC) for Switzerland "Due to government regulations, Mouser is unable to sell this product in your country."
I'll see what comes with the station and write back here, thank you very much for your help.

Pio

 

Offline mamalala

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?)
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2015, 08:25:33 am »
Thank you very much for the information. I'll have to read more. Digikey seems to only have a few tips available anymore, http://www.digikey.ch/product-search/en?FV=fff40014%2Cfff803e7&k=metcal+ssc&mnonly=0&newproducts=0&ColumnSort=1000011&page=1&stock=0&pbfree=0&rohs=0&quantity=&ptm=0&fid=0&pageSize=25
Mouser also seems to stock only two 700 series chisel tips (T too high for regular solder IIUC) for Switzerland "Due to government regulations, Mouser is unable to sell this product in your country."
I'll see what comes with the station and write back here, thank you very much for your help.

Pio

Not sure about the lower-end series, but generally eBay is a good source for rather cheap Metcal tips. Just search for "Metcal", and then make sure to click the "Zurück zur originalen Suche", because the silly eBay search thinks it is smarter than you, and replaces that search with one for "Metal" instead.

Most stuff comes from the US, but even with shipping and import tax/duty, it is usually cheaper than egular distributors, at least if the seller does not use that rip-off "global shipping" program from eBay. However, i mostly see stuff for the STSS/MX series there (which is what i have, the 13.56MHz system. The PS stuff is in the kHz range), so it may require a bit of patience and closely looking.

Greetings,

Chris
 

Offline vikasbly44

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?)
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2015, 09:10:20 pm »
DEAR....

 If you go into your user profile and set your country....

Thank you....
 

Offline PioB

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?)
« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2015, 05:16:16 am »
If you go into your user profile and set your country....

I did already, a few days ago. You on the other hand,... :D

I did receive the SP200 and I had a base board of a 3d cube laying around that I got sometime ago. I soldered a few sockets with the Weller and a few with the Metcal. They performed both equally well on the through hole components, I don't have any smd project around at the moment with which I could test the Metcal a bit more. It would seem that it has a bit more heat capacity (or a faster heater) than the Weller, I seemed to be able to go a bit faster from pin to pin.
The only thing I don't really like so far is that the on/off switch acts on the secondary side of the transformer. Who would put in a real switch and then not switch the incoming voltage... The transformer has a bit of a hum to it too, so you can hear it even if the station is off.
I will have to get some 2 mm chisel tip, which is my favorite with the Weller (TSSOP was no problem), the one on the Metcal now is quite a bit bigger. I have the SSC-636A, SSC-736A (both wide chisel) and a SSC-638A (pencil-point), so if anyone has any recommendations/favorites, I'd be grateful to hear about them.

I took a few photos of the driver box, see the attachments.

I'll try and keep this thread updated once I get my hands on an SMD board.


Pio


P.S. In the board, the upper row of DIP-sockets is soldered with the Weller, the lower with the Metcal
« Last Edit: February 27, 2015, 05:23:01 am by PioB »
 

Offline mamalala

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?)
« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2015, 07:00:40 am »
I have the SSC-636A, SSC-736A (both wide chisel) and a SSC-638A (pencil-point), so if anyone has any recommendations/favorites, I'd be grateful to hear about them.

My favorite tip (on the MX system) is the STTC-126. It's a bent sharp tip, giving you the best of both worlds. The SP200 equivalent is the SSC-726A.

Greetings,

Chris
 

Offline nanofrog

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures
« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2015, 01:41:47 pm »
Nice little station.  :)

Quite a difference in the thickness of the iron handles, which I suspect you'll come to like in short order (I certainly did when I swapped over to my Weller WSP80 & WMP irons).  ;)

BTW, did you use water soluble flux on the DIP pins in the first photo?
Joints appear dull and there's some sort of grainy debris on the joints.  :-//
 

Offline PioB

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2015, 05:06:36 pm »
Nice little station.  :)

Quite a difference in the thickness of the iron handles, which I suspect you'll come to like in short order (I certainly did when I swapped over to my Weller WSP80 & WMP irons).  ;)

BTW, did you use water soluble flux on the DIP pins in the first photo?
Joints appear dull and there's some sort of grainy debris on the joints.  :-//

Hi, I used the 0.331 mm Kester QQ-S571-e rosin cored Sn60Pb40 solder (cf. attachment) and cleaned the PCB with LR PCB-cleaner. I'd also have a new roll of 0.3 mm Sn60Pb39Cu1 Stannol solder at my disposal, if that'd be better.
I tried taking a better picture of the joints. Will have to try to look at them under the microscope next week.
The handle is indeed nice, more like a pen.
 

Offline nanofrog

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures
« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2015, 01:41:34 am »
Hi, I used the 0.331 mm Kester QQ-S571-e rosin cored Sn60Pb40 solder (cf. attachment) and cleaned the PCB with LR PCB-cleaner. I'd also have a new roll of 0.3 mm Sn60Pb39Cu1 Stannol solder at my disposal, if that'd be better.
Either should be fine (HS10 is RA, and the Kester is either RMA or RA <282 or 44 respectively> based on what I could dig up online).  :)

FWIW, the second pic of the board looks a lot better.
 

Offline bitshape

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures
« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2015, 11:54:51 am »
I used the 0.331 mm Kester QQ-S571-e rosin cored Sn60Pb40 solder (cf. attachment)
Those joints don't look nice at all imho; that Kester (331 60/40 core58-2.2% 0,38mm) is the water soluble 331-flux version, not Rosin but Organic (ORH1), and you really need to clean/rinse it with water after soldering:
Quote
Kester 331 Organic Flux is a water soluble formula for use in flux-cored solder wire.
The residue can be completely removed with a simple water rinse.
The 331 flux residue is conductive and may cause corrosion of metal parts over time.
The other solder should give you some nice shiny joints, it is the same class (Rosin ROM1) as the legendary Kester "44".
Maybe you can try it out and post a picture of some joints with that solder.

I use Kester 44 63/37 core66-3.3% and that gives me super-shiny joints and is easy to clean with some IPA. (Yes, I imported some fresh rolls (0.80mm & 0.50mm) from the USA a year ago when the dollar-euro price was good.)

Additional:
Those older Kester-labels can sometimes be difficult to read, see this picture below; it has the same label format of the information on your own roll of Kester 331:

Alloy  / \   Core
Flux   \ /   Dia.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2015, 12:38:51 pm by bitshape »
 

Offline Shock

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures
« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2015, 10:52:16 pm »
Thou shalt clean flux before asking thy opinion.
Soldering/Rework: Pace ADS200, Pace MBT350
Multimeters: Fluke 87V, 117, 27/FM
Oscilloscopes: Rigol DS1054Z, Phillips PM3065
 

Offline PioB

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures
« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2015, 09:01:04 am »
I used the 0.331 mm Kester QQ-S571-e rosin cored Sn60Pb40 solder (cf. attachment)
Those joints don't look nice at all imho; that Kester (331 60/40 core58-2.2% 0,38mm) is the water soluble 331-flux version, not Rosin but Organic (ORH1), and you really need to clean/rinse it with water after soldering:

Thou shalt clean flux before asking thy opinion.

Hi, thank you very much for your information, I didn't know that it was water soluble flux before; I rinsed a corner of the pcb and it does certainly look better now (the joints aren't shiny but the contaminations have gone). The LED matrix in the other attached picture was soldered using the Stannol solder and the joints certainly look shiny just after soldering. I'll keep the Kester solder for smd stuff and wash the pcb with destilled water before putting on any switches, buzzers or other humidity sensitive parts. Thank you very much!
 

Offline Emrtech

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Re: Metcal SP-200 (or keep my Weller WECP-20?); Now with pictures
« Reply #15 on: July 02, 2018, 10:16:04 am »
I know this is an old thread. Here is a link to a SP-200 schematic. Perhaps it helps someone to repair such a station.

https://www.mikrocontroller.net/topic/311671#3363592
 


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