Author Topic: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options  (Read 7415 times)

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Offline unixb0yTopic starter

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Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« on: March 20, 2021, 06:10:50 pm »
Hello everybody,

As the title suggests, I'm looking if there are cheap desoldering guns that you can recommend!

I have a Hakko FX-888D so maybe there's even something that you can plug into its "base piece"?
For example, I saw online that you can buy "just the gun part" of the "Pro's Kit SS-331H". I don't know if that's an option on Hakko. It would be especially great not to have another "big box" on the table..  ;D

As per my definition of cheap? I saw the Hakko FR-301 for over 300 bucks which is like twice the price of my station so I was shocked :D Since I don't desolder as much as to justify anything more expensive, my limit would definitely be under 100 bucks for something like this.

Thanks in advance!
Dave
 

Offline RayRay

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2021, 06:23:28 pm »
You could get the S-995A or S-993A from ebay or amazon (they're cheaper on ebay though) and they both have replaceable nozzles. Personally though (as one who desoldered many components throughout the years) I don't use a desoldering gun, and have no problems (it's all about the technique and the knowhow really). A desoldering gun would definitely make things easier, but one can get by without it too.
 

Offline RayRay

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2021, 06:51:49 pm »
You got this one too:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005001764656478.html
Way cheaper than the other options, and appears to do a decent job (according to some Youtube reviews I've seen)
 

Offline BrokenYugo

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2021, 07:25:15 pm »
I looked at this a while ago from a similar perspective/use case, my conclusion was there are three cheap options worth pursuing.

1. Buy more solder wick, a bottle of good flux if you don't already have one, and a good sucker (edsyn soldapult).
2. Deals can sometimes be had on used pro grade stations, covid has probably upset that though.
3. Hakko FR-301

Another option some like if you're after DIP packages without destroying the chip or board is to use a hot air station. Cleaning the through holes is probably still gonna be a pain though.

Constant vacuum desoldering gear simply isn't cheap, no way around it.
 
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Offline BlackICE

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2021, 05:30:34 am »
For decades I've used solder wick and a plunger sucker. What a PITA! I have a 20 year old sub woofer amp I wanted to recap and knew it would be a royal PITA if not impossible to do with my limited tools. It has 6 large caps soldered to a PCB with a large ground plane. My 65 watt solder iron could barely heat it up. I broke down and bought a FR-301. Wow, so much easier to remove parts!  I have a controller board for a swimming pool heater fail years ago. The 7 segment LEDs lost some segments. I bought a replacement > $280! It failed again, but now since I had the FR-301 it was simple to remove the 28pin LED and solder in a replacement. That would be hard to do with wick and a sucker since the LED package is flush with the PCB so I can't cut off the pins like on an IC. Those 2 jobs alone paid for the FR-301. If you have one you will use it more than you think because it will be so much easier to remove parts.
 

Offline mastershake

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2021, 11:53:42 pm »
i have a pro's kit 331 and it works pretty well especially for the price. had it for about 5-6 months and use it all the time. make life super easy thats for sure.
 

Offline duckduck

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2021, 05:07:54 pm »
I bought an Anesty ZD-915 last year. Seems to work OK. It is a huge step up from more manual desoldering methods. Looks like there are reasonably priced replacement parts available for it. I paid less than USD 150 delivered. I wasn't able to find it on Amazon or AliExpress (reasonably priced). Looks like the Pro'sKit SS-331H is the new hotness. The SS-331H looks very similar to the ZD-915. I would not be surprised if some/many parts were interchangeable.
 

Offline Chris56000

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2021, 08:53:44 pm »
Hi!

The SS–331 is virtually identical electronically and mechanically to the ZD–915 and Duratool clones, the difference being an updated green and black case with a different front panel layout, otherwise the tips, filters and consumables are directly interchangeable, and I suspect the heater elements are the same as the ZD–915 as well!

It's basically just "The Emperor's New Clothes" being sold for about £30–40 more than the ZD–915 series!

Banggood UK are offering the SS–331H at the best price at the moment!

Chris Williams
It's an enigma that's what it is!! This thing's not fixed because it doesn't want to be fixed!!
 

Offline edavid

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2021, 09:26:54 pm »
The SS–331 is virtually identical electronically and mechanically to the ZD–915 and Duratool clones, the difference being an updated green and black case with a different front panel layout, otherwise the tips, filters and consumables are directly interchangeable, and I suspect the heater elements are the same as the ZD–915 as well!

Didn't you read the listing?  The new SS-331H has ""Double the effect of attracting tin"  ;)

Anyway, Banggood US has it on sale for $121, which I think is cheaper than you can currently buy the ZD-915 or ZD-8915 in the US.  It's listed as 240V, but a comment says it can be rewired for 120V - can anyone confirm?

https://usa.banggood.com/ProsKit-SS-331H-Electric-Solder-Sucker-Desoldering-Device-Anti-static-High-Power-Strong-Suction-Desoldering-Pump-for-PCB-Circuit-Board-Repair-p-1375060.html?cur_warehouse=USA
 

Offline TheBay

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2021, 12:31:29 am »
It is quite a bit different, it is a ZD-8915 (I own one) which has a much thinner barrel and heating element with less thermal mass.
They are/were quite prone to clogging where the solder goes in to the glass tube. I did a quick fix on mine by wrapping around some 2.5mm copper wire from some scrap T&E around the exit tube to give it some thermal mass. It helped a bit but I spotted replacement guns/heating elements that looked a bit different and you can see the heater extends further towards the exit tube. I bought one and have not had a clog since.

The only problem is, if you buy a ZD-8915 or a rebadged version, there is no way of telling if it has the new style heat element or not. Though if someone was unfortunate to get the older type heater element the new replacement and replacement gun is cheap.

I was going to bin mine if the mod didn't work/hadn't got a new gun and get a the ZD-915/985 etc with the thicker heater element, but I have to say it works as well as the Weller WR3 I used at work. The big benefit of the thin barrel on the ZD-8915 is it can really get in some tight spaces.

I put a post on here somewhere regarding the new heater element/guns for these.


Hi!

The SS–331 is virtually identical electronically and mechanically to the ZD–915 and Duratool clones, the difference being an updated green and black case with a different front panel layout, otherwise the tips, filters and consumables are directly interchangeable, and I suspect the heater elements are the same as the ZD–915 as well!

It's basically just "The Emperor's New Clothes" being sold for about £30–40 more than the ZD–915 series!

Banggood UK are offering the SS–331H at the best price at the moment!

Chris Williams
 
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Offline tatel

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2021, 05:25:49 am »
i have a pro's kit 331 and it works pretty well especially for the price. had it for about 5-6 months and use it all the time. make life super easy thats for sure.

+1

IIRC, I paid some €80 on perhaps last February
« Last Edit: June 21, 2021, 05:29:49 am by tatel »
 

Offline mariush

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #11 on: June 21, 2021, 01:56:01 pm »
I have no problems desoldering parts by adding liquid flux and lead based solder to the pins, to lower the melting temperature of the existing solder  - the liquid flux also helps by attacking the oxidized surfaces and making the heat transfer from the tip to the leads.
If needed, a good solder wick helps (sometimes I dab it in flux for extra kick)

Another option worth considering is buying low melt solder, which melts at low temperature and stays liquid for a longer period of time. So you can apply this solder on all the leads of the part at same time, get both sides of a dip to be liquid solder then a small tap on the board will make the chip fall out of the board.
 

Offline tatel

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Offline rob77

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2022, 10:44:31 pm »
i have a pro's kit 331 and it works pretty well especially for the price. had it for about 5-6 months and use it all the time. make life super easy thats for sure.

+1

IIRC, I paid some €80 on perhaps last February

+1

bought it locally approx 2 years ago (approx 100Euro). very happy with it, it's simple and does the job well ;) managed to break the glass tube (rolled of the table), so replaced it with a piece  of aluminium tubing and never broke it since :D

 

Offline rob77

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2022, 10:48:51 pm »
I bought myself a GLOCK 22 sports model, and I don't regret a thing. It sits well in my hand, it's not heavy, and the accuracy is not bad either.

i assume it  blows the components away with the solder and enlarges the holes to 10.16mm  :-DD
 

Offline PlainName

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #15 on: January 31, 2022, 06:22:44 pm »
Quote
Since I don't desolder as much as to justify anything more expensive

Once you get used to a desolder gun it will be hard to go back to a hand sucker.

I used to have one of the Duratools (aka ZD915-alike) and it did the job fine. Got gummed up regularly but the clearance tool did the biz. Biggest hassle was just waiting for it to warm up, but once up to temperature it's OK.

Come to think of it, I'm not sure what happened to it - thought I'd sold it on but can't remember where. Anyway, based on that experience I splashed on a DeNon SC7000Z, a trifle at around £500 from Farnell, but merely $445 from Howards in the US. It is sufficiently good that I have a long-term Ebay search for any decent one going relatively cheap as a spare, but none has turned up. Anyway, a big advantage of this over the ZDs is it blows as well as sucks. Great for localised SMD jobs of, say, resistors and caps,  but also for keeping the tip clear. You suck the solder of, or out of, whatever and then switch to blow and give it a blast to eject the stuff that would otherwise block things.

Since the DeNon has everything in the gun, it's a bit of an unwieldy bugger, although not unduly so. But preferable to an air and power connection. Nevertheless, I can't remember the last time I used the manual sucker. Braid, sure, all the time, but for PTH the DeNon (and, albeit not quite as slick, the Duratool) is the dog's danglies.
 

Offline HumbleDeer

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #16 on: February 05, 2022, 03:48:07 am »
Since the DeNon has everything in the gun, it's a bit of an unwieldy bugger, although not unduly so. But preferable to an air and power connection.

I do find that a unit with everything in one gets really heavy if your main pastime is de-soldering parts for reuse. It usually involves a lot of parts; A lot of hours.
 

Offline PlainName

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Re: Cheap Desoldering Gun Options
« Reply #17 on: February 05, 2022, 12:44:36 pm »
Strangely, I find the light empty guns more uncomfortable to use. Perhaps it's a matter of balance as well as weight.
 


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