Solder Station Stabilizer

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Introduction: Solder Station Stabilizer

[Editors note: June 01, 2021]

WOW! - this appeared in Make Magazine, and It has gone viral, so I quickly finished this instructable as the companion piece to the article... -- Jonathan

Now in Gizmoto and also in HackAday

AND I have just been featured!!!!!!


"Songs to aging children come, Aging children, I am one" -- JONI MITCHELL

I am 62 years old, and I have developed a condition in my hands called a "essential tremor"

Here is what The Mayo Clinic says about them "Essential tremor is a nervous system (neurological) disorder that causes involuntary and rhythmic shaking. It can affect almost any part of your body, but the trembling occurs most often in your hands — especially when you do simple tasks, such as drinking from a glass or tying shoelaces." -- Jan 23, 2019

Tying shoelaces??? try precision SOLDERING

Supplies

Step 1: The Problem

"Old age, she a bitch" -- JONATHAN GLEICH

Can I quote myself? here is a short video of me TRYING to precision solder.

Step 2: Puzzling Out the Solution. . .

Since soldering is such a precision thing, and dealing with a hot soldering iron, there where several factors I needed to consider, I was online Chatting with my friend Ken Anderson, and he said "why not use a camera stabilizer" and the idea was born.

I have a Osmo Mobile 3, but didnt want to take apart a $300 stabilizer, so I looked on eBay and found one for $50

Step 3: "many Parts of a Pine Tree"

I was working on another project - To make a way to mount a ipad on your carry on luggage, for the hours spent waiting for a plane (another instructable) and had parts left over, one of them was a screw down clamp with a thumb screw, which was perfect as the holder for the soldering iron, I cut it at the round base, and embedded a 1/4 - 20 Threaded coupling and epoxied it into place

Step 4: Things I Wanted

I wanted a way to be able to disconnect the soldering iron from the stabilizer quickly, so It can be docked in the solder station holder, when I was working on another part, The Macally clip already had one as part of the mount, so it was PERFECT!

Step 5: Putting It All Together...

Assembled, and working, still needs some tweaking to get the counterbalancing correct, and the cord to the soldering iron, is influencing the stability, but the iron is MUCH LESS SHAKY!!!!!!!

Step 6: Candygram for Mongo....

I noticed that the unit still was not as stable as I would like, and pondered WHY, I realized that the soldering iron was NOT the same weight as an average iPhone, and added some weights (from a ceiling fan balancing kit, I was gonna buy this.)

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