Involvement:Expert (understands the inner workings) - Ownership:1 week to 1 month
I just grabbed these without much thought when I was restocking a soldering kit to replace one that got lost, but I'm really glad I did. It's really very useful of a host of tasks that aren't actually soldering, per se, but often accompany it. Need to pull a wire between crowded components on a PCB? There's a tip for that. Many other tips that I'd never have chosen (if I'd been selecting them individually) turned out to be very useful. The slightly angled "split crowbar" tip is good for pulling out otherwise tricky component leads. The wirewrap tip (slotted, square end, with a loop for the wire end) is useful on soldering projects even if you've never heard of the wirewrap method of circuit fabrication. Have a screw you need to anchor (so you can tighten the nut on the other end) but the board is so crowded that you can only access it at an angle -- the angled chisel is great for that (worth the price all by itself, though I had no idea why anyone would want such a tip when I saw it in the picture) That's one of the good things about kits like this: 12 tips (6 double-ended tools) means you get a lot of shapes you'd never have foreseen a need for. The handles are cool and comfortable, and thus far seem quite sturdily mounted with no slippage. Some tools of this type (including the dissection needles I often use) "slip" if you twist the tip, but that hasn't happened with these yet. Solder doesn't seem to stick to it much (a good thing), but I haven't really tested that. I think the thick full-length shaft kept the tip cool enough that the solder only formed a cold joint, and could easily be popped off. This didn't affect the desiered joint I was soldering though.
None thus far
I'll be buying more for myself and friends, the next time I'm shopping for soldering supplies. In fact, I almost wish I'd thought to add a set to the order I just placed
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