Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net

   Home   Help Search  
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Butane Soldering irons, like Portasol?  (Read 8165 times)
KC2MMI
Member

Posts: 620




Ignore
« on: March 17, 2012, 07:19:07 PM »

I bought a Portasol some years ago because I needed to make a mess of simple solder repairs withtou AC power around. The Portasol worked very nicely, given the amount of heat it made, and as long as you didn't try to use it in freezing weather or high wind.

Then I found the catalytic material in the tips wore out, way before I would have expected.

Tried a couple of new tips, same thing, they just don't last very long despite the best Ronson butane fuel sold for the tool.

So, has anyone had better experience with a better brand? Different tool? Apparently the Portasol is actually made overseas, and neither the maker nor the importer really gives a damn, they dont even answer email inquiries.

I still find soldering without AC very convenient and sometimes necessary, I'd just like a better tool to do the job with.

--Jared
Logged
W5FYI
Member

Posts: 1046




Ignore
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2012, 11:49:54 PM »

I, too, had a Portasol, but when it developed a leak in its butane tank, I replaced it with a Radio Shack model. The page at http://www.radioshack.com/search/index.jsp?kwCatId=&kw=butane%20soldering&origkw=butane+soldering&sr=1 shows that even Weller has butane irons on the market, and your luck with their catalytic heating elements might be somewhat better. GL
Logged
NA4IT
Member

Posts: 876


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2012, 04:41:52 AM »

I have one of the older Weller pen type units. It does OK. I have used it mainly outside working on antennas, as the torch for soldering wire splices, and as the iron, soldering PL259 center pins.
Logged
KK4GER
Member

Posts: 54




Ignore
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2012, 06:35:20 AM »

This is a nice unit and their support is great.  I inquired at www.pro-iroda.com for spare parts and they sent them to me at NC:
http://www.pro-iroda.com/Pro150K.htm


Also, for the price, this set is great:
http://www.eastwood.com/9-in-1-cordless-soldering-iron-torch-and-blower.html
Logged
K0JEG
Member

Posts: 665




Ignore
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2012, 11:51:37 AM »

I bought an Ultratorch UT-100si a few years ago. It hasn't let me down in any of that time (other than not wanting to light on the first click of the igniter at 9000+ feet, but eventually it did go). Kind of pricey though:

http://www.masterappliance.com/heat-tool-products/butane-powered/ultratorches/ultratorch-ut-100si
Logged
KC2MMI
Member

Posts: 620




Ignore
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2012, 05:59:58 PM »

As best I can tell, the Wellers are all flame torches that heat the underside of the tip. As are the SolderPro, which should take catalyst probles out of the mix I guess. If I went for Solderpro, I'd avoid the top models that use special fuel cells--one more thing that won't be in stock when you need it. Surely, Ronson's butane can't be all THAT contaminated?

Has anyone else got thoughts on whether I've just had a bad run of catalysts, or if catalytic tips like Portasol's are just, ah, a comment on irish engineering?
Logged
W5FYI
Member

Posts: 1046




Ignore
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2012, 01:16:20 PM »

They tell us that leaded gasoline (tetraethyl lead) would ruin catalytic converters in cars--the lead contaminates the platinum in them. Could you have gotten a little solder splatter onto your iron's catalytic element?  Just a thought....
Logged
K0EKL
Member

Posts: 39




Ignore
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2012, 02:49:16 PM »

Another vote for the Ultratorch UT-100. Works great, easy to get replacment parts if they are needed, and it puts out as much or as little heat as needed.
Logged
KC2MMI
Member

Posts: 620




Ignore
« Reply #8 on: June 06, 2012, 02:18:25 PM »

Lead contamination, interesting concept. If it could go uphill, pass the filter screen, and dose the catalyst element well enough to ruin it...interesting concept but I'd hope to see a "use only with lead free solder" sticker on there if that applied. Lead is sprayed in engine exhaust, this would be a much less likely path.
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!