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Showing 1-10 of 170 reviews(5 star, Verified Purchases). See all 209 reviews
on November 16, 2011
I'm a retired design engineer and over the years, I have had to do my own soldering (re)work when my tech's were not available. The station is on par with the weller soldering station. Weller was the only one we used in our lab.

The unit has enough power to work with TO-220 TO-3 package (heavy duty power devices) but with a quick change of the tip allowed me to work with SOT-23 and 0402 sized packages. Latter ones are the size of a rice grain and smaller. pin pitch of 0.5mm and had no problem. It worked really well with ROHS compliant Pb free 25 gauge solder and below. Didn't bridge the solder connection at these small dimensions. And most importantly, it maintained the temperature precisely so that I didn't damage any of these very small components.

On larger items, I could solder board mounted bananna jacks without problems, no problems handling the power devices.

It's a great station highly recommend it. Ergonomics is nice. Handle diameter could have been bit larger. It's bit smaller in diameter than the Weller soldering iron. Maybe I'm just used to a the Weller. Still very comfortable.
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on April 17, 2013
This is a real fast video review of the Hakko FX-888 Soldering Iron. The video shows opening the box new (from my Amazon Order), setting it up and using it with some lead-free solder.

I repair cameras equipment, and after searching for a replacement soldering iron for working on lead-free solder circuits, I was told that any 80-watt soldering iron was the answer and I bought a couple. I was so disappointed by every aspect of them, that I decided to spend the $80-90 on something that was supposed to work even better.

Oh boy was I pleased with what I'd chosen.

I am usually VERY unhappy with anything I buy new. Typically the corners manufacturers cut to save money and the "cost-engineering" is always plain to see and the results are terrible. THIS FX-888 was the exact opposite. I felt it was a solid, reliable and effective piece of equipment that did exactly what it was supposed to do and without any hassle.

It melted the lead-free solder instantly and at less than full power; the temperature stayed consistent and didn't cycle way up and way down like those cheaper soldering irons do. I can't think of anything bad to say about it, except why didn't I hear about this sooner?!

Enjoy my video!
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on April 15, 2013
I don't consider myself electronically inclined, for lack of a better descriptor. Sure I can repair stuff and am generally up on the latest gizmos and tools, but my soldering ability has always been clumsy at best. Sweating pipes sure, but fine scale stuff forget it. Now I know part of it was due to lousy soldering irons owned over the years, mostly el cheapo Radio Shack stuff. After deciding to splurge after several reviews of Hakko irons (and other toys), I am happy to report my fine scale soldering ability has improved. I can't fine solder PC boards just yet, but I am better than ever thanks to the right tool. The easily adjustable temperature range, along with built in cleaning station are just great to use. Almost able to make repairs I am proud of. You cannot go wrong with this station and it is highly recommended.
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on April 16, 2012
I had previously reported that I could not use this iron for my new hobby. However, I spoke with Tom at B&D and he knew it would be OK. Then I spoke with the Hakko rep at a glass show and he assured me that my instructor - who had told me this iron was too hot and would break my glass - was all wrong. So I took it to class and my instructor watched from the corner of the room. I love the adjustable temp control. I started low and slowly raised it to the temp I needed to melt the 60/40 solder I was using. I practiced a little on foiled glass. Then I did my cross. I am so proud of my 2nd piece of work. The iron did a lovely job and I made great beads. The iron is lightweight and a nice size for my female hands. The heat seems to be fluid, no cold hot times. My instructor went into hiding as the other women in the class got to try the iron and loved it.
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on December 6, 2012
Very nice. Excellent control, great design(wish they made the other color combos available in the States--I read that Hakko has either stopped making this analog model and they are now digital readout which is even cooler..u get tip temp readout...but doesn't seem to be available in US at this point) nice slender comfortable iron. Love the copper tip cleaner thingy. All around well made and sturdy. You wont be disappointed.

Weller, of course would have been the other option for me..I forget the specific model number but its in the same price range...very popular, very decent...used to be US made...I believe they moved the mfg to China...oh the iron itself has a bulkier foam grip and I prefer the Hakko iron..better feel and more comfortable to hold...

I use it for my model train engine rewiring, decoder installs, lighting, track work,...tiny wires and parts...easy to melt styrene with a lesser iron...this is totally worth the price.
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on December 17, 2015
This really is a must have tool if you are into working on electronics. I originally bought a cheap knockoff that worked well for years, in fact it is still on my bench. This soldering station is just better. It heats up fast, the tips are high quality and the wand is light and fits my hand better. Temperature control is fantastic.

Don't let the toylike colors fool you, this is quality tool, it is my go to station. The old one sits with a big fat tip and only gets used for tinning wire.
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on February 1, 2012
I'll begin by saying that I don't have very much experience when it comes to soldering. I have owned a butane Weller for a while that I use for soldering wires and large components, but I recently started working with circuit boards both at work and as a hobby. I decided that a decent, temperature-controlled soldering station was a good investment, and went with the Hakko on my father's recommendation.

I took the FX-888 to work to compare it side-by-side with their Weller WES51 stations and was blown away at the difference. To be fair, the Wes51 had a used tip vs. the FX-888's brand new one, but neither was oxidized. The Hakko heated up slightly faster, tinned slightly easier, and was generally a pleasure to work with. The Hakko's cord between the iron and station is also lighter and more flexible - a small detail that I noticed right away. The inclusion of the brass sponge and rubber tip cleaners in addition to the standard sponge is very welcome, and having them all right there in the stand means that you won't have extra items cluttering your desk.

I do wish it came with a smaller tip, either a conical tip or a smaller spade. It is also impossible to find tips for the Hakko locally - a problem I wouldn't have with a Weller, since there's a supplier in the area - but I knew both of these issues before I bought it, and they aren't major.

Overall, I'm loving this iron. It's within the budget of a serious hobbyist, but I feel certain it could be used every day at work with no problems.
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on April 3, 2012
...for under $200. Hakko is not as well known as Weller to most people, but they should be. This soldering station is hands-down the best that you can buy for less than $200 - and it costs less than $100.

I have fairly decent soldering skills, and to be honest the FX-888 has IMPROVED my soldering skills quite a bit. My father and grandfather taught me the value of using the right tool for the job, and if you
are soldering, the FX-888 IS the right tool for the job.

One of the biggest frustrations of a lesser quality soldering iron is the time that it takes to reach soldering temperature. The FX-888 went from cold to 350°C (650°F) in about 30 seconds. When I started soldering,
the inevitable drain of heat from the tip was virtually unnoticeable. The LED blinked about two times very quickly, indicating that the tip was coming back to the set temperature in about 1 second. Fast heat up, fast
recovery time - two keys to efficient and reliable soldering.

Do not waste your time with cheap soldering irons. If you do even a a small amount of soldering this station will pay for itself in saved frustration, saved time, and improved reliability.
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on April 8, 2012
I've been real happy with the FX-888 so far. The iron comes right up to temp and stays there. The extra tips I bought make it pretty versatile for both through hole and surface mount work. I like the feel of the iron in my hand and I don't quite hate the color. ;)

The EEVBlog pointed me towards the Hakko and Dave's recommendation worked out well for me. I don't think that the mod that Dave talks about in his blog is really necessary but the teardown is interesting.

The construction of the main unit and iron holder is solid. I don't have an issue with the DIN connector on the iron really. I have to assume that the connector is rated for the voltages and currents seen by the iron. It may be the weakest link in the whole unit but I don't think it will be an issue for years to come.

I really wanted a Weller but decided against it based on the reviews I've seen. It seems like many of the good names from the past are losing their reputation.
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on February 14, 2016
Soldering has always been a dreadful experience for me. It takes a long time to heat up, cord is always in the way, gunk build up, the tip is too big or too small, very hot handle in a few minutes. Most likely I am quite inexperienced, but all of these issues are addressed by Hakko FX-888 (non-digital version). I am using it very rarely, but it is always a pleasure - heats up in literally few seconds, extremely flexible cord, a separate cleaning unit, multitude of tip sizes (not necessarily built by Hakko).

The only thing that could be better is the design of the unit - awkward shape, stiff and not detachable power cord, can not stack the cleaning unit on top of the soldering station. It also cost more when compared to most other soldering irons/station, but if you do not want to gamble with the cheaper alternatives and would like to have an item that will last generations, this is the one.
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