#1
Hey guys,
are their any specific brands i should look out for when i'm buying a soldering tool? Also...... how much would the good ones cost?
One that could last me for a good amount of wiring jobs.
#2
you can get soldering tools quite cheap, and it's really the person behind teh solder that is what makes a good joint. that said you NEED to have a soldering iron with replaceable tips, and have plenty of good quality tips (in my opinion it's what makes a good soldering iron). Butane soldering irons are handy because your not tethered to a powerpoint and a lot of soldering irons have really short chords which is rather annoying sometimes. Don't fall for the cold heat or battery powered tricks, they'er just basically designed to short circuit the tip and create a crapload of heat, but their tips are kinda expensive adn don't last too long.

good brands? Well lets face it - a soldering iron is basically just a device that converts electricity into heat, the tip is what's doing the work in terms of precision. the higher wattage soldering irons will heat up quicker and produce a hotter and more instantaneous impact when you do hit the joint, but in my experience this is only noticeable if you're very quick behind teh soldering iron and want to do 20 joints a minute.

buy something mid range, us $20 and you know you've done well. right now i've got a 5 pound soldering iron and it's not half bad.
Marty
#4
get Cold Heat from canadian tire, its only 20 bucks and heats and cools down in less than a second
Larrivée D-03R
US Fender Telecaster, Vox AC15
#6
Cold Heat is the biggest piece of crap I've ever tried, don't get it. Just get a nice 30w mains powered one, with a stand and replacement tips.
These go to eleven...
#7
make sure u buy heaps of tips ok, i don't think they're expensive but thats the worse thing, seriously the tip on my soldering iron screwed up half way through soldering a project (probably shoudl have replaced it way earlier, but when it started melting through some plastic shielding on some wire and got crap was when problems set in) - and basically it only heated up on one side, rather than the tip, so soldering became annoying - spare tips are a must.

once again no to the cold heat, i have plenty of faith in what those soldering irons might become but they aren't passed being gimmicky yet and they're a bit pricey, plus shortcircuiting on components is kinda risky.

oh and if you can get solder in a dispensing container ... eg http://www.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?ModuleNo=43002&criteria=SOLDER%20dispens&doy=11m9.
it helps - trust me. but if you can't then it's no biggy.
Marty