Portable soldering irons like the TS100 are great when you want to get work done without taking a lot of space in your shop or toolbag. But what if you want something personalized just to you? That’s what YouTuber Electronoobs did with his portable iron, and with his second version seen in the video below, he’s made a few improvements.
While the old one did work, he found that the tip he was using wasn’t able to get up to the same temperature as the heating element, and decided to upgrade to a T12 tip meant for a Hakko 912 station. While the quality of this tip is excellent, it didn’t fit his V1 iron correctly — leading to a rather long list of upgrades.
To physically hold the new tip, he’s using fuse holder clips. Because the thermocouple is arranged in series with the heating element, reading temperature meant using an operational amplifier to read the voltage drop across the tip. This also meant using a thermocouple and voltmeter to correlate voltage values with the actual tip temperature, modeled as a linear regression in Excel.
In addition to this necessary upgrade, he added a buzzer for feedback, repositioned the buttons so they would stick out on opposite sides of the PCB, and included a vibration sensor to allow it to go to sleep when not in use.
Check it out in the video below, and you can find more information on how to build one yourself in this write-up.