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Author Topic: Best magnifier for soldering?  (Read 2662 times)
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I'm a newbie to electronics. Looking for recommendations for the best hands-free magnifying solution for soldering. Looking at one that RS sells: http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3928375

Suggestions?

TIA,
 
Bob in Lancaster, PA
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That depends on the size of work you will be soldering on.
Ofcourse these helping hands come in handy i'm using those myself too.
But they'll tumble over if you have heavier or larger stuff to work on.
And the magnifying glass might not be at the right place for you to use, even if it can be moved around.
In that case you can consider those that can be clamped to your desk.
Searching "magnify" at radio shack will show you one that is about 3 times the price the one you already found.
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Have a look at "blink without delay".
Did you connect the grounds ?
Je kunt hier ook in het Nederlands terecht: http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php/board,77.0.html

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Harbor freight has good prices on the helping hands (ebay might have them too). When I'm wearing my contact lens, I'm far sighted, so I keep a collection of the $1 reading glasses from the DollarTree store (from +1.5 to +3.0) for close up work.

http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result?q=helping+hands
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Consider the daffodil. And while you're doing that, I'll be over here, looking through your stuff.   smiley-cool

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This is what this old guy uses:


* Mag.jpg (38.32 KB, 701x426 - viewed 37 times.)
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The way you have it in your schematic isn't the same as how you have it wired up! That goes for me too.

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Mine's similar to the one you link to. Can't see if that one has a feature mine has, which is a small (about 20mm?) "super-magnifier" area in the lens which is useful if you need to "zoom"
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I use this, from Aven Tools.



A magnifying glass as big as your face, wide viewing angle, clear lighting, and doubles as a desk/task lamp too.

Also, the big glass doubles as "eye protection" when cutting leads, a barrier from solder fumes reaching your nose (use a fume hood also on your desk).
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Ditto vasquo,
At work I use anglepoise magnifier with built in light. Only time it can sometimes get in the way is when solder sucking, at certain angles the plunger hits the frame and either moves the nozzle or reduces the suck. Other than that it's ideal and doubles as a desk lamp.
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And don't be tempted to save money and buy one of those cheap, similar looking lamps on eBay for 1/2 to 1/3rd the price of the Aven lamp above. They're chinese crap! Save your money and buy the lamp from AvenTools.com 

I needed a second lamp for a second desk, and trying to save money, bought a clone look-alike from eBay. 
Bad move.

The Magnifying Glass suffers from distortion, a *VERY NARROW* angle field of view, fringing of the edges, the only thing that works is the "lamp" part.  But the magnifying performance is a total, utter piece of chinese crap. Even after just a few minutes of looking into it, it will give you headaches.

On the Aven lamp, I can work 8 hours a day looking through it and not get a headache.
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I use a visor similar to the one that LarryD has.  They're cheap and they work, but I wish I had gone a different route due to how close I have to be to get things in focus.  With my face a foot away from the board, I probably breathe a lot more solder fumes than I should.  They're great for examining the board for defects after soldering, though.
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Quote
I probably breathe a lot more solder fumes than I should.
I have a small fan blowing them away.
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The way you have it in your schematic isn't the same as how you have it wired up! That goes for me too.

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Thanks for all the thoughtful replies to a newbie's very first question. You guys rock!

Went to Harbor Freight today and got the magnifier with the LED and clips for about $7, and also a VERY stylish magnifier "hat" which is sure to score me major geek points, I have no doubt. Also got a cheapie digital multimeter. I realize all this stuff is sub-standard and I will probably eventually get nicer stuff, but it will do for now.

I also got my second sketch working (the LED fade one), after wrestling with trying to read resistor color codes. Not the easiest thing for someone with a variation of color blindness.

I am excited to be learning this stuff and very happy to have found such a supportive bunch of people. Thanks again!

Bob
Lancaster, PA
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I realize all this stuff is sub-standard and I will probably eventually get nicer stuff, but it will do for now.

Not necessarly substandard (I use the HF $2 on sale multimeter most of the time), but usually less expensive than elsewhere. I'd like to have a Fluke, but probably rather not sink that much in for just a hobby tool.
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Consider the daffodil. And while you're doing that, I'll be over here, looking through your stuff.   smiley-cool

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a VERY stylish magnifier "hat" which is sure to score me major geek points

.... only if you wear it outside or to the gym. Oh, wait.....

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I'd like to have a Fluke

My kids got me a 17B for Christmas...

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On the Aven lamp, I can work 8 hours a day looking through it and not get a headache.

It looks really good, must say
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I use what LarryD does.  It's great for my *old* eyes.
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