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#49962 - 03/21/05 12:00 PM Too many soldering irons?
pauluk Offline
Registered: 08/11/01
Posts: 7520
Loc: Norfolk, England
Do you ever get told by people that you have too many of a certain tool?

I just took stock of all my soldering equipment:

Weller WTPCN soldering station with pencil iron and assorted miniature bits (120V)

Weller general-purpose 25W iron, non temp-controlled with assorted bits (240V)

Weller T60 60-watt temperature controlled iron with a half dozen bits (240V)

Weller 100W temperature controlled with assorted bits (120V)

Antex 18W pencil iron on a homemade base incorporating half-wave rectifier option for reduced power, plus another half dozen miniature bits (240V)

A huge Weller 150W iron (120V) with 1/2-inch bit (don't think it's been used for years!)

75-watt Solon iron (240V) with flat 1/4-inch bit (1950s vintage, wooden handle)

Weller 8200 100/140W soldering gun (120V, 1960s vintage -- Even have the original booklet and warranty card with it).

Weller D550 200W+ soldering gun (120V -- It's in a plain-ish box stamped "U.S. Government Property," so I hope Uncle Sam sold it as surplus!)

Weller "Universal" 100W soldering gun (240V version).

Plus a couple of no-name bargain-basement cheapo irons in the junk box.

Strange thing is that some people would call this obsessive yet I consider it a perfectly normal collection!

(Oh, you might also get the impression that I have something of a liking for Weller equipment ).

So, what tools do you have in what some people would regard as larger than normal quantities?

[This message has been edited by pauluk (edited 03-21-2005).]
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#49963 - 03/21/05 12:10 PM Re: Too many soldering irons?
hbiss Offline
Registered: 12/16/03
Posts: 886
Loc: Hawthorne, NY USA
I suppose it all boils down to whether or not you actually use all of them. I seem fine with two or three myself (Weller) plus a gun that I never use any more. I would say you are more of a collector considering the redundancy and the fact that if some of those were used frequently you would not get the tips off to change them.

#49964 - 03/21/05 12:20 PM Re: Too many soldering irons?
pauluk Offline
Registered: 08/11/01
Posts: 7520
Loc: Norfolk, England
You may well be right on the collector angle.

There's a certain amount of duplication thanks to having 240V irons purchased here and 120V ones that came back from Stateside, but I must confess that they don't all get used frequently at all.
#49965 - 03/21/05 12:25 PM Re: Too many soldering irons?
CTwireman Offline
Registered: 02/07/02
Posts: 840
Loc: Connecticut, USA
Ok, since you asked:

25 T-Strippers (4 different types -Hey, I can't pass up a good clearance at Home Depot)
5 pairs of pliers
10 utility knives
5 hammers
5 channelocks
5 voltage testers
2 clamp ons
5 tape measures
4 pouches
3 tool bags

My excuse: Hand tools are basically consumable, so I like to have a good stock on hand.

I always like to have nice sharp T-strippers, so those get replaced pretty frequently. It still hurts to throw one away though.

Peter D.
#49966 - 03/21/05 05:02 PM Re: Too many soldering irons?
e57 Offline
Registered: 05/27/03
Posts: 2876
Loc: S.F.,CA USA
I have two Irons... I rarely use. But Paul, you may have crossed a line into the obsessive.... (unless they are on display somewhere, then you are a collector.)

But on what some people see as exessive in my tool collection:
9 pairs of linemans, one is always in pocket.
12 measuring tapes, one is always in pocket, one on dash.
7 levels, one is always in pocket.
6 of the same model 14.4 dewalt screw gun, 1 impact wrench. (7? 1-7 years old 2 batteries and a charger each.)
My excuse: I have 5 tool boxes, and each specialized for what type of work I am doing. i.e. If doing a panel, I pull out one box, running conduit, another box, same for phone, romex, MC. And a general bag, that has 2 of my 4 meters for troubleshooting, and trim out. Some jobs I pull out two or more boxes, and toss them on my two wheeler. I rarely loose tools, and they seem to last longer as they are used less.

On the other hand: I do not own a pair of needle nose, or a pair of dikes. Two things that surprise people when they ask to borrow them. All but one pair of linemans are Knipex, and the nose is small enough to use as needlenose, and I find the only efficiant use for dikes is pulling nails.

[This message has been edited by e57 (edited 03-21-2005).]
Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason
#49967 - 03/21/05 05:14 PM Re: Too many soldering irons?
Dnkldorf Offline
Registered: 12/12/04
Posts: 1064
Loc: nowhere usa
Seems to me my tools are like my socks.

I know I own at least a dozen tape measures, doubles of almost every hand tool and wrench imagineable.

But you think I can find them when I need them?

I bet if I had the time to take the trucks apart, take the storage garage and organize them, I'd find every tool I've bought.

Probably even find all those missing socks too.....
#49968 - 03/21/05 08:07 PM Re: Too many soldering irons?
gfretwell Online   content

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9039
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I seem to have a glut of drill motors and bad bits.
4 cordless drills, one 1/4, three 3/8 and two 1/2", corded plus a 1/2 hammer drill, a drill press and an air drill (does a Dremel count?). There may be one or two I forgot.
I don't even work in a trade.
I just seem to inherit old drills as gifts from widows. I must have 100-150 bits in various states of destruction. I keep saying I will sharpen them some day. Of course every drill someone gave me came with a bunch of burned up bits. I just keep buying new ones because I hate a nasty drill bit screwing up my work.
Greg Fretwell
#49969 - 03/22/05 05:39 AM Re: Too many soldering irons?
Attic Rat Offline
Registered: 12/14/03
Posts: 524
Loc: Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
...I,too have multiples of tools that I use everyday,.. to make up for the ones that are lost in drop ceilings,ATTICS,basements,and that occasional bottomless sump pump well from hell that loves to devour tools,..and God knows what else is down there...
.."if it ain't fixed,don't break a Licensed Electrician"
#49970 - 03/22/05 06:17 AM Re: Too many soldering irons?
pauluk Offline
Registered: 08/11/01
Posts: 7520
Loc: Norfolk, England
But Paul, you may have crossed a line into the obsessive.... (unless they are on display somewhere, then you are a collector.)

Hmmm... I'd better put them on display then! Or maybe I could get away with it by just claiming to be the stereotypical English eccentric?

I forgot to add an Antex pipe soldering iron to the list -- It has twin elements and jaws to close around a pipe fitting for soldering. I saw that and bought it several years ago thinking it would "be handy for the odd plumbing job around the house," and so far I've never used it!

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