Tools: Hakko FX-888D Soldering Stations

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The Hakko FX-888D is a flexible soldering station with digital temperature control.

These stations come with both a metal tip-cleaning sponge and a traditional wet sponge. The metal sponge is sufficient for most use. Please do not use the other sponge without adding water.

These stations have a digital temperature control. Check the temperature setting before use. It's highly recommended to use the lowest heat necessary to make a good solder joint. Heat can destroy some components. For typical 60/40 lead-based solder, 700F (370C) is a good start for through-hole components and 600F (315C) or lower for smaller / surface-mount components.

Soldering iron tips have a plating that will oxidize if left exposed to the air, ruining the tip. To help prevent this, coat the tip in plenty of solder before turning it off. Do not leave the station turned on for long periods when not in use. Do not wipe excess solder from the tip before putting the iron back into the stand. Do not scrape the tip with anything harder than a brass / copper sponge.

A good pattern of use is to scrub the tip with the metal sponge to clear any solder and carbon build-up, tin the tip slightly (adding solder), make your solder joint, then return the iron to the stand without removing excess solder.

Safety

The soldering iron gets hot and can melt and burn lots of things. Watch where you set the iron.

Please do not solder directly on the white acrylic tables or plastic folding tables - they melt. Use the "helping hands" devices or solder on top of a scrap of wood, glass or other material.

You must make sure iron is cool to the touch before putting the station away.

Make sure to disconnect power to anything you are soldering.

Safety glasses are available and are recommended when clipping component leads, desoldering, working with capacitors, or any other situation where something may become airborne.

The smoke from burning flux can be quite irritating. For short work sessions, blowing it away is a good idea. For longer work sessions, setting up a small fan to pull smoke away from you is even better.

Wash hands after working with any solder, lead-based or lead-free.

Resources

Manual

Cartoon Guide to Soldering