A kit builders "magic" tool

I really enjoy kit building I find it to be a nice pass time when the propagation is not co-operative and the bands are slow. With kit building it's a learning curve starting out with basic kits and moving up to kits that
contain SMT components....I have yet to dive into that pond. There sure is a reward when you have spent time
Replacing a cable
assembling a kit and then to see it work is  a great feeling.
Recently I had to open up my Elecraft K2 to add an internal antenna tuner and battery. I had not had the top off the K2 for some time.....I was amazed at all the components to which I thought..."I actually put all this together" For those of you who build kits like me you have run into times when things just don't go as planned. I have soldered components in the wrong  place. There has been solder run onto two pads instead of the one the solder was intended for and so on. I would bet there are a lot of kit builders out there who have their own stories.  As kit builders we all have our "tools" from soldering stations to multimeter's

Hakko at work
and everything in-between. One tool I purchased about a year ago and really don't use all that often but when used it sure has gotten me out of many binds. The "magic tool" as I call it is the Hakko 808 desoldering tool. In the past I have used the hand pump, hand bulb and soldering iron and bulb combo. These did an ok job but at times all had failed me. The Hakko 808 is very efficient at removing soldering mistakes and at the same time saving the component if placed in the wrong location. The Hakko heats up very fast, the vacuum pump is powerful, maintenance is minimal lastly its very user friendly for filter changes. I know that solder mistakes only happen now and then but it's sure great having the right tool for the job at hand.

The finished product

Mike Weir, VE9KK, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Brunswick, Canada. Contact him at [email protected].

Leave a Comment

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter
News, Opinion, Giveaways & More!

Join over 7,000 subscribers!
We never share your e-mail address.

Also available via RSS feed, Twitter, and Facebook.

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter

We never share your e-mail address.

Do you like to write?
Interesting project to share?
Helpful tips and ideas for other hams?

Submit an article and we will review it for publication on AmateurRadio.com!

Have a ham radio product or service?
Consider advertising on our site.

Are you a reporter covering ham radio?
Find ham radio experts for your story.

How to Set Up a Ham Radio Blog
Get started in less than 15 minutes!

  • Matt W1MST, Managing Editor

Sign up for our free
Amateur Radio Newsletter

Enter your e-mail address: