Second time's the charm...?

So I’ve kinda given up on trying to save the 7506 for now, but that hasn’t stopped me from wanting to give this shit a try. Now, as there doesn’t seem to be a reputable service I could send my Dekoni Blue to have it converted to run balanced… I’ve got the idea in my head to try it myself. Probably not terribly smart, but what the hay…
The panel mount jack connector I’m thinking of using:

Decided to pick up some decent wire strippers, a helping hand, and more wick (yeah, I burnt through most of what I had fighting with the 7506…). I’ve also figured to look into a better iron, and I’ve found a few that seem interesting in the ~$45-50 range, and wouldn’t mind some feedback on the general idea of doing the mod on my own, or the units I’m looking at

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Louis Rossmann liked the Banggood TS100 iron.

Edit: Same iron via Amazon:

Have you considered picking up a learning project to get a feeling for soldering before jumping into the deep end (again)?
Adafruit has several projects to try.

Also: Have your got yourself a better multimeter? :wink:

I own that X-tronic model and it’s great for the price. It’s also the recommended model on the Wirecutter

I’ve thought about that one, genuinely. However, then I run into: I’ll probably be more of a hobbiest or be doing little projects here and there, and might go longer periods without touching it. Maybe not the product for me(?) vs something a bit cheaper. Like @marcgii brought up, he has (and likes) one of the ones I linked, it’s well reviewed, and $20 cheaper with a larger feature set and 3 more tips(that I may never need or use, or know what the fuck to do with).

I have not, but do I need to jump all the way up to a Fluke?

I have not considered that. I guess I just had a slight mindset of “the best way to learn is to jump right into the deep end”

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Tip wise:

  • Cone - Only useful for soldering wires to wires
  • Chisel - Good for any job involving flat surfaces (PCBs, terminals on a switch, etc.)
  • Forks, solder reservoirs, etc. - Specialised stuff for special jobs, you will know when you need these.

Probably not.

I did the same back when I started. For better or for worse.

This multimeter a good enough step up?

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That should do nicely.

I am presuming I should set the dial on the lowest setting for ohms (200 in this meters case)

The value you select is always tthe highest it will measure.

Pretty much I use a conical tip for everything, but it’s nice if the cone has a flat.
Having said that, it makes some things harder than they need to be, soldering is fundamentally about getting the components your joining to the correct temperature, so the solder can flow, a conical tip has less surface area in contact to heat say the PCB. The way you work around this is have a small amount of solder on the tip of the iron to increase the contact area while heating.

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Also, if you need to do quick checks, you can set the multimeter to the continuity test (speaker symbol) which would play a sound if you have everything soldered correctly.

If working with cables or plugs, its an easy way to quickly check between the TRS tips and solder points. You can just listen for the tone as you move through your connection points. Its also easy to check for errors if a sloppy solder bleeds over into another channel.

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What would you think about projects like these?
Or is the one you linked a better starting point

Both you linked look better as a project The stereo-amp-kit may even give you a starting point for a DIY bluetooth or garage-radio.

The ones Adafruit has right now are more desk ornament type.

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I may go with them as they seem to give a little something more to learn

I definitely need to learn to pay more attention, but I got the tree… Beyond not doing the lights correctly so they didn’t conflict with each other, I don’t think I did too bad.

The new iron… night and fuckin day difference!


Solder joints look good.

Practice and quality tools, I tell ya :smiley:


I have a black lower priced non digital hakko that i love. It was a big step up from borrowing my uncles “ole reliable” wellers.

And it 100% was needed for guitar work over using my grandpas soldering “shank” which was a 10" long iron with a wooden handle, straight plug in cloth cord, and a blunt pyramid tip that looks like it was shaped by hitting flint together. But i guess thats what was needed by bell atlantic in the '50s.

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Well, the only problem I’ve run into with the mod on my Porta Pro was the epoxy didn’t hold terribly well on one side. Even well after the 24 hour cure period. Don’t think that should be a difficult fix though. As for the Dekoni Blues… I’ve got a game plan. Need to pick up a dremel after payday to cut away the support material for the old jack. I’ll then be mounting the jack to the housing. I’ll be getting ahold of HAC for a balanced cable for it.

Carefull with dremels and other rotary tools like it.
I use needle files and fretsaw blades when fine work is needed.

I have a Dremel 3000, and it is an okay tool. In hindsight, I should have spent the extra money for a Proxxon IBS/E.
Don’t get me wrong! The Dremels are good, just that I had the Proxxon in hand and it just feels better.

Is there a tool you’d suggest more in this particular use case?

The two posts could be left alone, as they don’t really get in the way (I believe). The circular piece connecting them, however, isn’t large enough for the thicker walls of the newer jack to fit though.

Just another perspective showing that it will fit through the external hole without going all the way through.

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