Author Topic: Pace soldering equipment  (Read 551 times)

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woodone

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Pace soldering equipment
« on: February 25, 2020, 02:32:51 PM »
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Not sure has to where to post (ask) this has this is a tool , not really DCC or electronics?
But here is my question.After using a very low cost soldering station with a adjustable temp control I went out a bought a Pace Soldering station ST- 50 with an TD hand piece. Now this is 10 times the cost of my older unit.
No instructions on the Pace has it was used- I did look up the manual and did read. This has more settings that a DCC decoder.
I know that John C, and Peteski have used this type of station.
Do you operate this at the pre set defaults, or do you set up new set points?
Thanks in advance.

peteski

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Re: Pace soldering equipment
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2020, 04:14:22 PM »
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Well, this is a tool geared towards precision soldering of electronic components, so I would say that you posted your question in the proper forum.  :)

Admittedly, because this  is an industrial quality device, often used in environments where a very accurate (calibrated) soldering temperature is called for, the setup is a bit challenging for a hobbyist.  I remember  when I first started using my unit, I was a bit overwhelmed by the various settings.

The calibration is a bit complicated and involves items you don't even own, but for hobby use, none of this has to be done.  It is not like you are building some precision circuit to some very tight military specs.  It's been a while since I read the manual, but it should be safe using the default settings.  Just adjust the operating temperature to what you need.

Also, make sure to keep the hand piece plugged into the base unit at all times while it is turned on, and also do not exchange the tip/heater cartridges while the unit is on.  If you do disconnect the hand piece while on, the base unit will "think" that you connecting a new hand piece with an unknown cartridge and will want to go through the calibration process again.

Let me know if this answers your question. If you need a more thorough explanation either John or I should be able to assist (but I'll have to dig out and re-read the manual).   :)
« Last Edit: February 25, 2020, 04:16:12 PM by peteski »
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jdcolombo

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Re: Pace soldering equipment
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2020, 07:31:41 PM »
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I just used the defaults on initial setup.  I don't have the instrumentation to precisely calibrate the handpiece, but as Peteski points out, it isn't really necessary for the work we do.  After initial setup, I found that for soldering 36-gauge wire to decoder pads, a temperature of 700 degrees with my 1/64" conical tip worked great.  Tin the wire, hold the wire on the pad, touch the tip, and you're done. For soldering wires to home-made PC board pieces, I often use 750.  For tinning 1/4-watt surface-mount resistors or other small surface-mount devices, I dial it back to 650, and that's the temp I use for soldering wires to those devices (38-gauge magnet wire to 604 LEDs, for example).

The key for me in this setup was the size of the hand piece and the short distance between the handle and soldering tip.  I'm not overly concerned about whether the temperature on the tip is absolutely accurate.

BTW, I think the newest Pace stations don't ask for calibration at all.  The new TD200 handpiece and tips apparently are self-calibrating.

John C.

woodone

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Re: Pace soldering equipment
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2020, 08:26:28 PM »
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I have not used it all that much yet. I was afraid of burning the tips and was looking to set the idle temp lower than. 500 degrees.
When I tried to lower the temp lower than 500 degrees the unit turned off.
After using it a few times now , I see if I set temp to 500-600 degrees and solder a few joints if I don’t use it again after a time it’s tem goes to 350 and stays there until I use it again.
You can not realize the difference difference between this unit and my old $40.00 unit.
Still in the learning faze.
Thanks for the input & information.

peteski

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Re: Pace soldering equipment
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2020, 08:38:29 PM »
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Like John said, the fancy features are not the main attraction. The shape and size of the hand piece (and the size of the tips) is the biggest advantage compared to standard soldering irons.  Just like the PACE sales literature mentions, that hand piece is more like surgical scalper than a regular clunky soldering iron with a long heating element.

I would not worry about burning out the tip (or the heater). Those things are designed for industrial use.  I sometimes have mine running most of the day.  Just remember to keep the tip always tinned.  I use 600-750 temperature range (depending on the job).  Most of the lead-free solder used on electronic circuits for the last 20 years requires fairly high temperature iron.  I usually clean that solder off and use the old-style 63/37 lead/tin solder when I re-solder wires or components.
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RBrodzinsky

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Re: Pace soldering equipment
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2020, 08:44:29 PM »
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The new TD200 and ADS 200 station are amazing. You can change the tips on the fly and the unit is 100% self calibrating. Recovery time, from set back, is less than the time it usually takes me to get the iron out of the stand and to the item to be soldered. I’ve settled into the 1/64” conical and 3/32” chisel as my two routine tips, and still getting used to the bent 1/64” conical. I like handling the latter, but haven’t quite figured it out, yet (but John’s comment above might be the hint I needed, increase the temp to use the very tip of it).

The biggest improvement, though, is the hand coordination and steadiness I get, being able to hold closer to the tip.
Rick Brodzinsky
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Silicon Valley FreeMo-N

reinhardtjh

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Re: Pace soldering equipment
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2020, 09:18:56 PM »
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After using it a few times now , I see if I set temp to 500-600 degrees and solder a few joints if I don’t use it again after a time it’s tem goes to 350 and stays there until I use it again.

I too have a ST-50 and the TD-100 hand piece.  What you describe is called "set back" and it's designed to increase the life of your tips by backing off on the temps a bit when it senses that it hasn't been used after some period.  As you have seen, once it detects being used again it brings the temp back up to the set point.  Setback  requires a special stand that plugs into the base unit, mine doesn't do that but I don't tend to leave it on too long anyway.

Looking at the Pace site - www.paceworldwide.com I find it interesting that they seemed to have wiped all knowledge of the ST-50 series base from their site.  I can't find the manual either in the current or discontinued products sections nor any other mention of it at all.  The TD-100 handpiece is still there, I suppose because it was usable with other bases.  I wonder what the ST-50 did to cause this treatment.  Unless I'm just blind and missed it.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2020, 09:28:36 PM by reinhardtjh »
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woodone

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Re: Pace soldering equipment
« Reply #7 on: February 29, 2020, 11:51:20 AM »
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I think you may have missed it.
Under manuals- operation & instructions for Intelaheat- they list a bunch of power sources.

skent

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Re: Pace soldering equipment
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2020, 02:01:57 AM »
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I have a mid-tier Weller soldering station and I have nothing but positives to say about it.  Weller in general is a pretty hard-to-beat brand, in my opinion.

-S