Author Topic: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe  (Read 8576 times)

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Offline Lazarus4_

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Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« on: October 25, 2013, 05:02:12 pm »
Hi there!

I´m planning to buy a Metcal MX500 soldering station from the us, so it is a 110(or 115V)/60Hz model.
Now I found out in the schematics (http://www.mikrocontroller.net/attachment/193474/MX-500P-11.pdf) that the transformer
seems to have 2 separate coils, each for 115V and a jumper. So it should be possible to use the station on a 230V/50Hz mains?

Are there any problems to expect or should it work all fine? I´m a bit concerned about the 50Hz vs 60Hz  ???
 

Offline mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2013, 05:46:44 pm »
AFAIK the MX500 can be switched, but I've only ever seen EU versions
 The STSS-002 can't
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Offline quarros

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2013, 06:13:31 pm »
Hi.

I have a MX-500P-21 Right in front of me but unfortunately I'm unable to take it apart now, it uses secure torx screws and I only have bits of that type and it wont fit in the holes (when I get the right tools I can take it apart and photograph it if interested). Anyways on the back there are no visible switch for 110V.

Just a thought.... Why don't you try to wait and look around the German eBay??? Sometimes there are good deals for it. Last time if I remember right one sold for 200-250 EUR with two hand pieces (one tweezer one normal).
« Last Edit: October 25, 2013, 06:45:48 pm by quarros »
 

Offline Lazarus4_

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2013, 05:54:22 pm »
I looked on eBay in Germany but there are only 2 auctions and they are way to expensive for what you get.
Therefore I looked on eBay US and found some interesting offers.

The jumper to switch between 115V and 230V seems to be on the PCB near the transformer.
 

Offline quarros

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2013, 12:20:21 pm »
I looked on eBay in Germany but there are only 2 auctions and they are way to expensive for what you get.
Therefore I looked on eBay US and found some interesting offers.

The jumper to switch between 115V and 230V seems to be on the PCB near the transformer.

As i said you have to wait a little while, every one or two week a new one is put up or at least that is what I observed. The reason why tought you should think of a European purchase is because if you calculate all the extra cost you have to invest (Import duty, Vat, Your hourly wage to make it usable here >:D) it is not that much greater of a deal.

Anyways about the PCB switch I can't comment now, currently I try to buy a T15 secure screwdriver that is long enough to take it apart. The 4 hole on the back of the unit are 56mm deep and 10mm wide and the only two sets of secure Torx I have are either a 12mm wide universal bit set, or an L shaped set where the T15 size is only 52mm long  |O

Well at least YOU will know what tools to get when you buy one  ;D
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2013, 02:28:46 pm »
Grind the L shaped one into 2 parts and silver solder a thin wall tube onto it to lengthen it. Done that to make long reach screwdrivers to get into those deep recesses of plastic cases, just using a hex driver bit that fits the screws then braze it to a steel rod and bend the top into a handle.
 

Offline quarros

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2013, 02:56:48 pm »
Grind the L shaped one into 2 parts and silver solder a thin wall tube onto it to lengthen it. Done that to make long reach screwdrivers to get into those deep recesses of plastic cases, just using a hex driver bit that fits the screws then braze it to a steel rod and bend the top into a handle.

Thanks for the idea. Luckily I was able to find a local webshop that sell some long L shaped security torx for around 2.6 EUR so that solves it.
 

Offline keithu

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2013, 09:33:38 am »
I've switched my MX500 to 230V. The trickiest part of the whole operation is getting the case open so here's how to do it:

Remove the four recessed T15 security screws from the back. This is easily done with the correct screwdriver and they are cheaply available. The fifth screw in the middle of the back can be left in as it anchors the heatsink.

Remove the plastic shroud and indicator from the output sockets on the front. It just clips in and can be removed by prying at the top and bottom.

Remove the hex nuts and washers from the output coaxial sockets.

The front panel can now be pulled off. It's a tight fit but there are no wires connected to it.

The jumpers are soldered to the board and it's pretty obvious what to do but I did take photos if anyone's interested.
 

Offline quarros

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2013, 12:16:22 pm »
Thank you for the heads up. It will save me a lot of trouble when I will take it apart.
 

Offline Lazarus4_

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #9 on: November 05, 2013, 02:07:13 pm »
Pictures are always welcome  :-+
 

Offline keithu

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Re: Metcal MX500 - US version in Europe
« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2013, 08:02:05 pm »
Attached are photos of the Metcal MX500 showing the jumper configuration.

The last picture shows the mains input fuse which is 1.25A and should ideally be replaced with a 650mA (I guess). The PCB would have to be removed to do this; it's attached with six screws, four of which also secure the transformer.
 
 
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