PDA

View Full Version : Good source for weller parts?



KA8RAW
08-17-2009, 05:25 AM
About 15 years ago I purchased 2 weller military surplus solder stations sealed in airtight foil pouches. I have used 1 daily on my job ever since.
Today one of them failed. :(
They use EC324 heaters and SW60 switches.

I need a good source for these parts, possibly whole handles.
I am going to repair the bad one and keep a few parts around for emergencies.
Mouser wants $30 for the switch, which seems expensive, and I have found complete handles for $75. There has got to be a cheaper source for these, and I figure that if anyone would know, a fellow ham would!

Thinking back, I paid $75 each for those stations and regret not buying more.

W9GB
08-17-2009, 02:38 PM
About 15 years ago I purchased 2 Weller military surplus solder stations sealed in airtight foil pouches. They use EC324 heaters and SW60 switches.
That is the Weller TCP series, in production since mid-1960s. The "brains" of this temperature controlled iron are in the iron -- magnetic switch(SW60) and special PT tips(special ferrous mix plug at end) -- using the Currie effect -- NOT the base unit (as seen with other model designs that use thermocouples and microprocessors).
Weller made a special military kit (WTCPK - olive drab) under US Gov't contract with a 4-pin Cinch Jones connector rather than the standard 3-pin connector (24 VAC). Thousands of these were sold by Fair Radio Sales in early 1990s.

Weller (Cooper Tools) Web Page
http://www.cooperhandtools.com/weller/index.cfm

Weller Repair facilities -- these 2008 / 2009 prices are excellent
(You can't BUY new parts cheaper and DIY repair!!)
The Repair price sheet (PDF) is TWO pages.
READ carefullly between prices for the complete station refurbishment and individual handpieces (irons)
http://www.cooperhandtools.com/weller/warranty.cfm

For FAST shipment of parts via Internet mail orders use HCM Electronics.
http://www.hmcelectronics.com/cgi-bin/scripts/query.cgi?query=ec234

HMC Electronics.
33 Springdale Avenue
P.O. Box 526
Canton, MA USA 02021
Telephone: 1-800-482-4440
(781) 821-1870

Detailed answers follow -- please READ and FOLLOW web links (I don't want to write a book here on Q&A).

FIRST, start with the Weller Technical manuals for your specific station or iron.
New manuals (1990s to present are on Weller's web page)
http://www.cooperhandtools.com/weller/archive.cfm

The Legacy and Classic irons/stations before 1990s are posted on the BAMA Mirror
from my service library collection.
http://bama.edebris.com/manuals/weller/

I have used 1 daily on my job ever since. Today one of them failed.
GET out your DVM to determine what part has failed. Most likely it is the EC234 heater (~ 18 ohms resistance when good). Troubleshooting outlined on BAMA documents.

I need a good source for these parts, possibly whole handles (handpiece/soldering iron?).
Why do you need a completely new iron? That is a very expensive approach ($80 for new TC-201T iron), which frustrates the "Plug-N-Play" users (who love the Taiwanese throw away junk).
I have some spare/refurbished TC-201P irons (white silicon cord, non-ESD), advertised here on QRZ for about half that price.

I am going to repair the bad one and keep a few parts around for emergencies.
I have some Weller repair parts stocked here for YEARS.
A spare EC234 heater and "PT" tips would be all that you should really need.

NOTE: ALL Weller WC234 and TC208 heaters made after 2002 are SWAGED, and REQUIRE a new BA60 barrel nut (wider) that will fit over this swaged end of tube. So, order a new BA60, when you pick up that new EC234.

Mouser wants $30 for the switch, which seems expensive, and I have found complete handles for $75. There has got to be a cheaper source for these, and I figure that if anyone would know, a fellow ham would!
NOPE, you can shop around and save only a couple of dollars. MANY dealers have to order part from Weller (not in stock).
Why buy a new SW60 switch, that is rated for over 100,000 operations? The ones that I have replaced are normally over 20 years old and have been production usage -- turned on at least 8 hours each day and cycling the SW60 switch about once per minute.

What you calling a complete handle is actually a complete iron/handpiece, part number: TC-201T.
eBay sometimes has cheap prices for a few weeks, until the sellers checked retail pricing -- then they raise their prices.
WARNING: Many of these eBay sellers are selling Weller parts (made before 2000), so their BA60 barrel nuts in brown package will not fit the new heaters; non-RoHS parts -- many of these sellers are just surplus dealers -- with NO knowledge of Weller parts usage!

ALL soldering station parts had to meet RoHS in their fabrication a few years ago.
SO, Cooper Tools/Weller had to completely retool mfg. to eliminate lead (Pb) for being introduced in any part of fabrication process (injectors, extrusion, 24 volt transformer mfg., etc.) prices rose around 2002/2003 reflecting this investment.

Thinking back, I paid $75 each for those stations and regret not buying more.
Been working on and repairing Weller stations since 1975, the entire WTCPT station cost $75.00 (on sale) when you purchased them. You will see some discounting, but I have not seen the WTCPT station for less than $99 (specials) in the last 3 years.

Greg
w9gb

KA4DPO
08-17-2009, 02:55 PM
These guys actually specialize in Weller parts. I recently bought tips for my 30 year old controlled temp soldering station from them. Prices were good and service was excellent.

http://www.all-spec.com/brands/Weller/

K8PEZ
08-17-2009, 03:24 PM
If this guy has what you need http://www.eaesales.com/ I would recommend ordering from him. I looked high and low for replacement tips for my Weler, but all the places I found charged a ton for shipping, I believe he charges actual shipping costs.

KA8RAW
08-17-2009, 05:18 PM
W9GB, the switch is defective on it, also one of the push pins (wire attached) that goes down into the handle, has a frayed wire and I need a new push pin also, or a way to get the old one out. Let me know if you have those parts.
You are right, I did pick them up at Fair Radio Sales. :)
Does anyone still have any of these left?

DPO, thanks for link, I'll check them out.

PEZ, I bought my de-soldering station from him at a hamfest, he is a great guy.

W9GB
08-17-2009, 06:56 PM
The switch (SW60) is defective in it.
OK.
Here are the Weller instructions (2003) that ship with the new switch -- so that you can see what is required for SW-60 replacement.
http://bama.edebris.com/manuals/weller/sw60replacement/

Replacing the SW-60 requires disassmbly of the TC-201 iron.
I have those instructions (how to do work properly) on BAMA,
I retyped this from a poor quality 1980 Weller bulletin with diagrams.
Weller Handle Disasembly Manual
http://bama.edebris.com/manuals/weller/handle/

One of the push pins (wire attached) that goes down into the handle, has a frayed wire and I need a new push pin also, or a way to get the old one out.
Removal of socket pins from Heater Insulator is on the 3rd page of the Handle Disassembly (PDF document above)
The socket pins used in the heat insulator are Amp/Tyco Electronics part number 207437-3 (nickel plated).
The best cheap crimp tool for these pins is to use a D-pin (DB-9, DB-25) crimp tool. Mine cost $4 at Radio Shack 20 years ago. The extractor tool is Amp part number 91136-1 (Tool is now about $30, use to be $60 !!). These socket pins and Amp/Tyco extractor tool are available from DigiKey, part numbers: A25083-ND and A25081-ND
An alternative extractor tool can be fabricated from a bobby pin (Weller diagram how to fabricate in PDF above).


Let me know if you have those parts.
I am not a dealer/distributor for Weller.
I no longer sell individual repair parts to general public, that are used for my restoration work.
I do sell restored stations or complete irons, these are listed on: QRZ For Sale; QTH.com and Elecraft reflector -- when available. AG3Y will likely comment about that :-)

HCM Electronics will sell you the SW-60 part.
http://www.hmcelectronics.com/cgi-bin/scripts/query.cgi?query=SW60

I did pick them up at Fair Radio Sales. Does anyone still have any of these left?
The WTCPK regularly appears on eBay every couple of weeks, with prices ranging for 99 cents to over $100 for BuyIt. US Gov't disposed of these in 1990s, State of Kansas likely got their supply from Ft. Riley (military base) auction. As I said earlier, the TC-201 iron connector (Cinch-Jones) is NON-Standard with current Weller parts.

w9gb

KI6DCB
08-17-2009, 07:09 PM
Lots of good leads. I might add, try Electronics Warehouse in Riverside, California. They have lots of soldering stuff, good prices, and the guys there are quite all right and very helpful.

They have a Web presence:

www.electronicswarehouse.net

KA8RAW
08-18-2009, 08:36 AM
Thanks guys, lots of useful info here. I am going to rebuild my bad one, and possibly purchase a spare.

W9GB
08-18-2009, 03:28 PM
... possibly purchase a spare.
Weller WTCPK unit eBay Item number: 400068036769

The specific soldering iron (with 4-pin Cinch Jones connector) part number is: TCP-24G (TC-201P iron w/Cinch connector).

The Cinch connector was part of the military / government RFP specification.

w9gb

KA8RAW
08-24-2009, 06:16 AM
Weller WTCPK unit eBay Item number: 400068036769
w9gb

Thank you very much! :D

ad: Waters-2