Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Collectable soldering iron

12V Soldering iron

I picked this little goodie up at Guildex last weekend for a couple of quid. It's a 12v Antex soldering iron that dates from a long time ago.

Fitted with a couple of croc-clips, the idea is that you stick it on a 12V supply and heat some metal. For railway modellers, this probably means the output on the back of your H&M controller, or the track with said controller wound up to the max.

According to the instructions, this is Model B and capable of 12 watts. Presumably this means I could solder electrical stuff with it and not just low-melt. Using the variable output on a controller should bring the heat down but I doubt the cut-out on the power source would like an extended period of what is effectively a short-circuit.

From tip to the start of the lead is 16.5cm so it is a dinky little tool. Sadly, the lead is damaged, the previous owner obviously touched it with the iron and melted the insulation. While this might not be original, I'm going to find some suitable wire and replace it. While I'm not planning on using it much, the standard Antex 25w with a 10foot long lead I have for exhibitions is more useful, a faulty soldering iron is no use to anyone and I feel I want to make this one better.

Still, as a complete iron with box and instructions, it can join my collection of interesting tools. I'm probably alone in this but maybe, one day, the rest of the world will realise what they are missing out on.

1 comment:

Frank Collins said...

No you are not alone Phil!
I had a very similar soldering iron many years ago until the element failed. It was great for doing those old Wills Finecast and K's white metal kits.
There is a lot to be said for old tools, I have a fair few inherited from my dad still working where as the cheap imported stuff just breaks after a comparatively short time.
I must do a blog entry about these old tools some time.
Cheers, Frank