Author Topic: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station  (Read 106975 times)

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Offline max666

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #175 on: May 18, 2015, 01:52:22 am »
The unit itself weighs 2,5 kg, so I don't think 4 kg for the package is that far off (mine got shipped double packed).
 

Offline gl

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #176 on: May 20, 2015, 10:14:57 pm »
Cool.  I just ordered from panda-bg.com.  According to the Zhongdi model no it's the ESD version.  Worked out around 80 GBP all-in as the others, but they take Visa/Mastercard so there's some protection there.  Let you know how it works out.
 

Offline max666

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #177 on: May 21, 2015, 08:36:01 am »
What's the difference between the ESD an none ESD version anyway?
 

Offline gl

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #178 on: May 21, 2015, 07:53:43 pm »
I think it just means that the tip is earthed, right?  So no static can build up on it.
 

Offline max666

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #179 on: May 23, 2015, 12:53:33 am »
Well the tip of my ZD-985 is earthed, so ...
 

Offline orion242

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #180 on: May 23, 2015, 02:39:42 am »
Got mine today from memotronics also, and ran it though a wad of repairs.  Quick shipping, very happy with it.

Can't believe I waited this long for something that saves a load of time.

Thanks for the review Dave!
 

Offline gl

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #181 on: May 24, 2015, 02:04:50 pm »
@max666, you got yours from Hotair right?  Theirs is the ESD version.  Zhongdi model nos for the 220V versions are:

non-ESD: 89-8512
       ESD: 89-8514
 

Offline max666

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #182 on: May 26, 2015, 08:55:02 pm »
@max666, you got yours from Hotair right?  Theirs is the ESD version.  Zhongdi model nos for the 220V versions are:

non-ESD: 89-8512
       ESD: 89-8514


Yes from Hotair. I didn't notice it, but it actually says ESD it on the website "Rozlutownica ZD-985 ESD", but on the unit itself there's no markings whatsoever to tell them apart.

After using it some more, I noticed increasing difficulty cleaning the spring, because the solder much more engulfed the windings. And I made the mistake of heating up the spring with a Bunsen burner to melt off the solder ... took the springiness right off  ::)
So I have to figure something out to fix that.
 

Offline N2IXK

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #183 on: May 26, 2015, 09:29:24 pm »
I wipe down the spring and the inside of the glass tube with a bit of silicone spray lube after cleaning. Makes the solder less likely to stick, and easier to remove if it does.
"My favorite programming language is...SOLDER!"--Robert A. Pease
 

Offline gl

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #184 on: May 29, 2015, 01:40:08 pm »
My Z985 from Panda-BG just arrived, took 8 days to UK.  It's the ESD version as advertised, the (correct) Zhongdi model no is stuck on the plain cardboard box, and the back of the unit has a big 'ESD SAFE' sticker.

EDIT: Interestingly the manual says that the handle plastic is conductive on their ESD safe tools (which has safety implications).  So not just the tip.

Will test later ...
« Last Edit: May 29, 2015, 02:02:31 pm by gl »
 

Offline gl

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #185 on: May 29, 2015, 08:28:26 pm »
OK played with it, some newbie impressions (first time I used one of these):

On the whole works well.  English manual with a Bulgarian (I assume) extra page, no idea what it says.

Some plastics (gun handle & unit) had a few scratches on them, superficial though and no biggie for a tool I guess.

I assumed the plating on the tips (which you have to punch through) was lead-free solder, but it doesn't seem to be (my lead-free doesn't take)?  It's also not melting but instead starting to flake (break) off in places - is that normal?

At first tried lower temps - 260C melts my lead-free fine, but it seems to cause regular clogging half-way to the chamber (pump then gives up).  First time I couldn't clear it with the cleaner sticks and didn't want to force it (also didn't know if they are supposed to reach all the way into the chamber, they are) - so just turned it up to max (480C) and then it cleared fine with the sticks.  So running a bit hotter is probably a good idea, 280C seems OK so far.

Other than that works great, suction is good, and usually cleans so well that components just fall out.  I briefly had a Duratool basic heated sucker (just a solder pump and a basic AC iron smashed together) and while it worked OK it didn't suck as good, legs often sticking to the side (mainly because the tip hole was too large I think).  And the recoil from the pump was horrible.

No problems with Panda-BG either, they were helpful, spoke good English & told me the cheapest way to pay.  There's an issue with their order form converting all postcodes to numbers (no good for the UK where you have letters too) but I emailed them and they did actually correct it on the parcel.

Seems a good investment, thanks for the review Dave and all the input from everyone.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2015, 08:31:52 pm by gl »
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #186 on: December 11, 2015, 11:09:01 am »
I've been thinking about getting one of these ever since viewing Dave's review and I've now taken the plunge - through eBay.

Reason?

The regular price from the seller is still $190 and eBay are doing a promotion where you get 10% off for purchases over $100.  This made it $171 - delivery included.

I'm not going to be using it 8 hours a day 5 days a week, so I won't need industrial strength - so it would seem to be a good fit for my needs.


If anyone else is still considering this, the eBay offer is good until 23.59 (AEDT) on Sunday 13 December 2015.
 

Offline mstck

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #187 on: December 11, 2015, 10:47:15 pm »
I received one of these units today and I am in the process of getting used to it.  I find removing the barrel rather tricky(difficult). Is  there a "trick" to doing this that I might be missing?

Would appreciate any advice based on your experiences with the unit so far. Thanks.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2015, 04:02:30 am by mstck »
 

Offline mikerj

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #188 on: December 13, 2015, 11:45:55 am »
After using it some more, I noticed increasing difficulty cleaning the spring, because the solder much more engulfed the windings. And I made the mistake of heating up the spring with a Bunsen burner to melt off the solder ... took the springiness right off  ::)
So I have to figure something out to fix that.

You could try re-hardening by heating to red and quenching in water.  It will then be brittle, so temper it by heating to straw colour and quenching again.
 

Offline krivx

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #189 on: December 14, 2015, 09:46:09 am »
I received one of these units today and I am in the process of getting used to it.  I find removing the barrel rather tricky(difficult). Is  there a "trick" to doing this that I might be missing?

Would appreciate any advice based on your experiences with the unit so far. Thanks.

Are you sliding the switch at the back of the gun? It makes it much easier.

 

Offline tombi

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #190 on: December 15, 2015, 12:55:02 am »
Removing the tube where the solder gets caught is really hard on mine too. Mine is the Rhino tools version bought from an Australian supplier.

So you click the latch to release the slide, pull back on the slide as much as possible but it is still a tight fit between the rubber and the tube.

Mine came with both a glass tube and a plastic tube. I queried the seller and he said some people prefer one or the other. I've been using the glass.

The unit works really well overall. The only issue is sometimes I find I get a build up of solder at the back end of the metal tube where it doesn't get hot enough to melt. I think you have to keep running the cleaning rods through it or it can get stuck there. I had to disassemble the unit and run a find drill up the back end of the tube a couple of times to fix it.

Tom
 

Offline krivx

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #191 on: December 15, 2015, 10:11:16 am »

The unit works really well overall. The only issue is sometimes I find I get a build up of solder at the back end of the metal tube where it doesn't get hot enough to melt. I think you have to keep running the cleaning rods through it or it can get stuck there. I had to disassemble the unit and run a find drill up the back end of the tube a couple of times to fix it.


Yes, I've noticed this too. I clean out the gun as soon as I notice any drop in performance. It's hard to say how often as it depends on the volume of solder but I have done in after about 20 minutes of heavy use, which seems like a fair enough balance to me.
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #192 on: December 15, 2015, 11:19:15 am »
Mine is due to be delivered tomorrow.  Will Australia Post come through?

Interested to read the experiences of others.  So far I'm feeling positive.  I have a few old computer boards I'll be attacking to try it out.
 

Offline Muttley Snickers

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #193 on: December 15, 2015, 12:03:06 pm »
I've posted about mine before even in this thread, practice makes perfect, watch your temperature and time on board, what works well on one board will lift pads on another, tips and filters from Rhino Tools in Sydney.

I keep mine super clean and a smear of silicone grease around the cylinder seals does help, these as mentioned earlier are a tight fit but they have to be to maintain a vacuum seal, I use the temperature display as a guide only as the first unit I had was a mile away from the true tip temperature, it was getting way too hot and went back to RPG.

I have drilled out a few tips for larger pins and pads and it seems to aid in letting the melted solder get past the pin and out of the hole freely in some applications, the supplied ones were slightly smaller than I needed so a mod was in order.

If I am gutting a board then I crank it up and go to town but if it is a repair then more care is required so as not to do any damage. Only once have I had to dismantle the gun and run a drill bit up the spout to clear some solder and I regularly run the cleaning rods through whilst the unit is being used and still hot.
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #194 on: December 16, 2015, 01:17:59 am »
Well, I've got mine.

Bloody lazy Australia Post parcel contractor didn't deliver it, just left a card and updated the tracking with "Attempted Delivery - Unable to gain access". 

GIVE ME A BREAK!

His only obstacle was a 3 foot high gate that was not locked.  They had to get out of their vehicle to leave the card and it would only have taken them another 10m to have done their job properly - or is expecting them to operate one of the most common gate latches around asking too much?

This morning a driver from Couriers Please seemed to manage it with a box twice the size, even with scanner in hand.

Complaint lodged with Australia Post.

My next frustration is that I can't start playing with it right away....
 

Offline max666

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #195 on: December 21, 2015, 11:38:27 pm »
I wipe down the spring and the inside of the glass tube with a bit of silicone spray lube after cleaning. Makes the solder less likely to stick, and easier to remove if it does.

I have an anti-stick spray for welding; I imagine that would work well too. I always thought that spray was silicone based, but it explicitly says no silicones on the can.

I assumed the plating on the tips (which you have to punch through) was lead-free solder, but it doesn't seem to be (my lead-free doesn't take)?  It's also not melting but instead starting to flake (break) off in places - is that normal?

Just checked my tip and it does look like the plating flaked off, however I remember that the solder never actually wetted to the tip, which surprised me at first, but it never impede the desoldering process as far as I can tell. Also if not wetting means the tip doesn't get eaten away as fast as on previous desoldering stations I had, then that's fine with me.
I desolder at 380 °C, seems to work best for me, it's fast and no clogging. I also accustomed myself to hold the trigger a little longer when I pull back, which also seems to help with clogging.

I find removing the barrel rather tricky(difficult). Is  there a "trick" to doing this that I might be missing?

Yes, removing and putting back the tube is rather tricky. I tend to push on the sledge in order to take force of the latch and then pull down the latch. Then I push the glass tube and everything back towards the latch and pull the glass tube out from the front. Back in reverse.

You could try re-hardening by heating to red and quenching in water.  It will then be brittle, so temper it by heating to straw colour and quenching again.

Yeah I tried that, well not entirely, I didn't bother with polishing and annealing ... let's just say it broke in one place while others were still ductile like copper ... I'm done with that spring  ::)

I don't think my solution for the spring will help others, but I had an old type spring lying around. That and a piece of aluminium foil in the back works just perfectly. No stuck solder lumps, no stuck solder on the filter and good continuous suction.



The plastic tube has some ridges in the back to hold the filter, the glass tube is supposed to be used with the new spring and the aluminium disc with the notches to hold back the filter. But I got the impression that the aluminium disc pressed against the filter and the build-up of the solder dramatically impacted suction after some time. So I'm using the glass tube with the old spring and an o-ring that just fits inside to hold back the filter ... I'm happy with it.
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #196 on: December 23, 2015, 12:48:36 pm »
Finally had a chance to check out my ZD985.

Seems I have the new glass tube  :-+  with the new spring and plate setup  :--




Here's how it looks in place:




After removing a dozen DIP ICs and a few headers - this is what it looked like...




After a second similar session, this is what the handpiece filter looked like - after removal of (most of) the solidified solder:



I'm not really enthusiastic about this.

The filter is open to direct impact from blobs of solder that can build up and reduce air flow.  I don't see any reason why that should need to be - other than cheap design.  The cost of replacement filters isn't the issue, just the frequency of replacement and how fiddly that is to do.

I'd be interested in trying something like the aluminium foil baffle by max666 - but with this new spring, I'll have to look at another way.

There is also the occasional vibration from the pump that jumps up in volume by what seems like 30dB or so.  I suspect Dave already picked this in his tear down - but I'm reluctant to open the unit at this stage to implement a fix, such as the one he suggested, even though there are no tamper indicating stickers.

Aside from that, the unit seems to be performing quite well - but I might need some more practice.
 

Offline krivx

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #197 on: December 23, 2015, 01:02:24 pm »
Anyone have a source for a better spring?
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #198 on: December 23, 2015, 03:28:11 pm »
You probably want to get some thin stainless steel mesh ( around 150grit I would guess) and cut out a few disks to place before the filter to keep it clean. That will catch the solder and it will not stick to the stainless steel.
 

Offline krivx

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Re: EEVblog #542 - ZD985 Desoldering Station
« Reply #199 on: December 23, 2015, 03:49:17 pm »
 


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