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Hakko FX888D - Not enough heat at tip? (...and how to repair old tips?)

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sofakng:
I've been using a Hakko FX888D for a few years and I'd consider myself intermediate-level soldering skill, but when I use really fine-point tips (J-Tip [TR18-BR02] or Narrow-pitch soldering [T18-S4]), it seems like there is almost no heat at the tip.

Is this normal or is this improved with the newer T12-style tips?

Can I "upgrade" my FX888D with anything to help the heat transfer to the tip?

Also, how can I "repair" older tips that I might not have taken 100% care of?  (I always leave solder on the tips, etc, but sometimes they seem.... old?)

thm_w:
This is normal. T12 may be a bit better. You'll see decent improvements moving to an induction type station (Metcal/Hakko).

But what temperature are you using, have you verified it with a thermocouple?

You can buy retinning solution or use fine sandpaper on the tip, but if the plating is worn through you are better off buying new tips.

Shock:
If a tip is oxidized solder won't bond to it, this causes poor heating performance. The smaller the tip the less throughput there is (heat transfer to the pcb). So use tip rejuvenator/refresher to de-oxidize and apply fresh tin to the tip.

To prevent it occurring in the future replace dirty sponges and brass wool. Use only demineralized/distilled water on your sponge and keep it damp (not soaked) when cleaning the tip. If you have good brass wool it can help with cleaning as it has a scrubbing action.

To keep the tip in good condition leave solder on the tip when you are not using it. Don't clean the tip and leave it in the stand for a prolonged period or put it away clean. Moisture, flux and heating action will progressively make the tip more oxidized. When it has a coating of solder on the tip this keeps that surface protected then you just need to clean and tin a few times with fresh solder before reusing.

Things to note in this video. Don't use kitchen sponges they may melt or leave residue on the tip. Tip rejuvenator/refresher will tin the whole tip if you try, so don't exceed more than the original tinned portion.

cdev:
I had that problem and it needed to be reset via a special sequence that I am sure I saved so give me a bit of time and its yours. I went through this whole thing around eight months or so on this site, a search will bring it up. (the reset sequence) Search on my username and FX-888d . Its nuts that Hakko doesnt tell people about this in a more prominent way.  Come back to this thread in a bit and I will post it for you. (DONE)

Couldnt be easier. No low temperature) that is NOT the way its supposed to work, A reset as shown in the video  fixes it. Now I just leave it at the default most of the time. Which is hot enough, only need to turn it down when I am doing something delicate.

Here is the "great reset" LOL.

https://youtu.be/ecH4c6NdBuo



BTW, I hate the hakko user interface, but I like the soldering pencil, its markedly better than my previous iron.

My other solderingIron is a fake 939 knockoff..  I really needed the real  hakko for soldering coaxial connectors which my previous iron wasn't cutting the mustard on. The knockoff would swing around quite a bit in temperature, it was maddening..

I keep some real colophony (pine resin) flux around, its a good thing to have for getting the tip really well tinned.

Let us know if this fixes it, you have to unplug it also when you do the reset then plug it back in and it should be fixed and not too cold. At least that's what happened to me.

Poof, fixed!

xavier60:

--- Quote from: sofakng on January 20, 2022, 07:40:26 pm ---I've been using a Hakko FX888D for a few years and I'd consider myself intermediate-level soldering skill, but when I use really fine-point tips (J-Tip [TR18-BR02] or Narrow-pitch soldering [T18-S4]), it seems like there is almost no heat at the tip.

Is this normal or is this improved with the newer T12-style tips?

Can I "upgrade" my FX888D with anything to help the heat transfer to the tip?

Also, how can I "repair" older tips that I might not have taken 100% care of?  (I always leave solder on the tips, etc, but sometimes they seem.... old?)

--- End quote ---
I have been using Hakko T18-S4 tips with my FX888D exclusively for the last 2 years for SMD to soldering 5mm brass screws to 2oz PCB.
Have you checked the temperature? I use an old tip with hole drilled into the end into which I insert some some solder then a K thermocouple.

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