OT: Weller soldering irons

Pete Turnbull pete at dunnington.plus.com
Sun Apr 5 15:32:05 CDT 2020

A few hours ago I started looking at three "smart" light switches that 
need LEDs replaced, and switched on the soldering iron, and ... nope. 
It's a Weller WP80 and it seems the sensor in the heating element has 
died.  I discovered that only after resetting and then dismantling the 
control unit to check it out with a DVM, of course.

Clearly I need either a new WP80 element, or a new soldering iron.  I 
could get a WSP80 for far less than the cost of a new element for the 
WP80, but I'd get the element faster.  So which, if any, is the better 
iron?  What would you guys do?

I begrudge paying UKP 92 for a new element.  That's the cheapest I could 
find -- /half/ the most expensive price -- but just seems ludicrously 
extortionate for what amounts to a piece of swaged stainless steel tube 
with a short length of resistance wire and an even shorter length of 
thermocouple wire inside it.  I could buy a whole new solder station 
with more bells and whistles, albeit of a "lesser brand", for less.

Pete Turnbull

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