Top 5 Best Solder Iron for Stained Glass

Stained glass is an interesting hobby that requires patience and some skill. You have to be willing to listen and learn as it is not a simple task. Patience definitely comes in handy when working with metal and glass as it can be tricky at times. In addition, having an artistic flare can only add to the quality and uniqueness of your pieces.

For this particular piece, we are going to discuss the best solder iron to purchase for stained glass work. It is probably one of the most important pieces to have. However, before we run through our top picks, we are going to discuss the various tools to have on hand and some basic steps for producing easy pieces when you first start out.

Ferramentas para o trabalho com vitrais

Besides a ferro de solda, there are a variety of other tools you need to have available when conducting a stained glass project. Not surprisingly you can purchase starter kits that include most if not all of the tools you need to get going, but here are the tools in more detail.

  • Stained Glass Sheets: Obviously, you cannot make stained glass without colored glass pieces. The stained glass comes in a huge variety of colors and shades to help you create one-of-a-kind pieces. There are several varieties of glass that allow lots of light in, some light, or provide a lot more privacy. Decide what your end look is going to be and purchased accordingly from a reputable glass maker. 
  • Stained Glass Grinder: Um moedor pode reduzir a quantidade de resíduos que pode ser produzida ao usar uma ferramenta simples de corte de vidro. Eles vêm em uma variedade de tamanhos e funções. Faça um favor a si mesmo e saia on-line para ler avaliações e recomendações. 
  • Glass Cutter: Glass cutters are used to etch your glass pattern onto the colored glass sheets. They are extremely useful for hands-on users, but they require a bit of practice and technique to use in combination with a grinder. 
  • Stained Glass Pliers: Esses alicates são fornecidos em vários tamanhos e formas, dependendo do tipo de trabalho e técnica do vidro que você planeja usar. Eles são extremamente úteis para cortar e moldar vidro. 
  • Pattern Shears: Pattern shears are extremely useful for cutting out your patterns or templates for stained glass work. They are uniquely designed just for stained glass. They are a handy tool to have.  
  • Stained Glass Solder and Flux: Obviously if you use solder iron to make stained glass, then you need solder and flux to produce a nice finished product. We have touched on various solder options before, but to refresh there are two types: lead-based and lead-free. Either one is useful for stained glass work. Flux is what makes the solder flow more freely and produces a smoother finish. 
  • Copper Foil Tape: Fita de folha de cobre é o que é usado em torno da borda das peças de vidro cortado. Isso permite que a solda segure e mantenha duas peças juntas. 
  • Patina: Este é um produto que altera a cor da solda para cobre, latão ou preto versus a cor prata. Tudo depende apenas da aparência final que você deseja alcançar.

Etapas para fazer peças básicas de vitral

Existem várias etapas principais que podem ser aplicadas a todos os trabalhos com vitrais. Aqui estão eles:

  1. Buy the right tools: Já discutimos uma variedade de ferramentas para ter. Faça sua pesquisa e compre suprimentos de qualidade decente. 
  2. Figure out your design and produce it: Comece com algo simples antes de passar para peças mais complicadas. Você pode encontrar padrões online ou desenhar os seus próprios. 
  3. Choose and purchase your glass: Descubra qual vidro você deseja usar e em que tons. Encontre um revendedor respeitável e compre seu produto. 
  4. Create a glass template and cut out: Print out your design and etch the appropriate pieces onto the right color glass. Score and cut out each piece of traced glass. Make sure to mark each piece. 
  5. Smooth the glass edges: Usando um moedor, alise as arestas ásperas para garantir pontos de conexão suaves. 
  6. Foil the glass: Aplique fita de alumínio nas bordas de cada peça, na espessura que for melhor para o seu design. 
  7. Add flux and begin to solder the pieces together: Aplique o fluxo à fita de cobre, se desejar, e depois solde as peças uma a uma. Recomende aderência nos cantos primeiro e depois faça uma linha de solda sólida. 
  8. Finish with patina if desired: Por fim, aplique a pátina se desejar uma mudança de cor nas linhas de solda.

Top 5 Best Solder Iron for Stained Glass

Agora que discutimos alguns tópicos importantes, vamos falar sobre os melhores ferros de solda para usar em projetos de vitrais.

  1. Weller W100PG Fahrenheit Heavy Duty Soldering Iron.
  2. Hakko FX601-02 Adjustable Temperature Controlled Soldering Iron.
  3. American Beauty 3138E-100 Heavy Duty Ergo-Iron.
  4. American Beauty 3158-200 Heavy Duty Soldering Iron.
  5. Hexacon SI-P250 Soldering Iron.

1. Ferro de soldar para serviço pesado Weller W100PG Fahrenheit

We have discussed Weller products in the past for electronic soldering, but the more heavy-duty varieties are also useful for stained glass projects. This particular Weller product can handle up to 800 degrees Celsius, although it does have variable temperature options. It includes three different sized tips for the user depending on project need that can handle 600, 700, or 800 degrees Celsius. It has a fast heat-up time as well.

Prós

As dicas intercambiáveis que acompanham esta unidade são um ótimo bônus, pois podem lidar com três configurações de temperatura diferentes. Isso é útil dependendo do trabalho que você está fazendo. A unidade Weller é perfeita para iniciantes e profissionais e é uma marca bem conhecida no mundo da solda. 

Contras

It does not come with a soldering station. That must be purchased separately. Depending on what your setup is, that may or may not be a deal breaker for you. The most common complaint about this model was that the unit seemed to heat, but the tip did not render it useless.


2. Ferro de solda controlado por temperatura ajustável Hakko FX601-02

The Hakko ferro de solda produces approximately 67 watts of power and has adjustable temperature options. It has a ceramic heating element that allows for quick heat-up and consistent heat control. The Hakko is extremely lightweight and has a comfortable handle to enable ease of use.

Prós

Este produto inclui um seletor de temperatura na alça para facilitar o controle do aquecimento adequado. Também é capaz de manter a temperatura dentro de vários graus da quantidade definida. Isso permite que o usuário evite pontos frios em sua linha de soldas, o que leva a um produto com aparência mais limpa. O Hakko é ideal para projetos de vitrais médios e pequenos. 

Contras

This is an extremely popular soldering iron that works great for smaller stained glass projects. However, it did have a few complaints against it. The quality of the product was a repeated trend throughout the complaints. It had issues maintaining temperature even though the product description stated it was fully capable of doing so.


3. Ferro Ergo para Serviço Pesado American Beauty 3138E-100

This particular soldering iron comes with a bent heating element that allows for close-up detailed work. While this brand is typically used by professionals, it can be used by hobbyists as it is quite a good tool for stained glass projects. The handle is built to be ergonomic and prevent hand fatigue when working on larger projects. The 3138E-100 also has a lead-free tip that is paragon iron-clad for long-term usage. In addition, it includes a 3/8 inch diamond-style tip.

Prós

This company is a known brand amongst professionals and tradesman, but it is becoming more popular with smaller hobbyists and crafters alike. It has a unique design that is easy to handle and provides 100 watts of power. They have amazing customer service and repair any defects quickly. They stand behind their product quality. It also has the highest temperature of all the units we looked at. It can handle up to 855 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Contras

Atualmente, não há comentários negativos sobre este produto, pois é relativamente novo. No entanto, é altamente recomendado.


4. Ferro de Solda para Serviços Pesados American Beauty 3158-200

Este é outro produto de beleza americano. Ele vem equipado para suportar até 200 watts de potência. Ele tem uma ponta de diamante de 5/8 de polegada e tem 14 polegadas de comprimento. Além disso, possui um elemento de aquecimento de compressão de níquel-cromo, o que significa que aquece com eficiência e mantém a temperatura. Possui um design modular que permite a troca fácil de peças. É outro produto de beleza americano que é altamente recomendado.

Prós

The customer service related to this product is top end. The company stands behind its product and strives to respond promptly to any concerns. The modular design is a plus for swapping out tips or even malfunctioning components. It is capable of producing heat of nearly 1000 degrees Fahrenheit, which makes it ideal for high heat projects.  

Contras

As with the other American Beauty model, this 200-watt version is quite popular. The only complaint we noted was related to regular maintenance. Since this costs quite a bit, users need to take special care to clean and handle this unit or be prepared to regularly send this to the manufacturer.


5. Ferro de Solda Hexacon SI-P250

The Hexacon produces 250 watts, which is by far the largest wattage unit we have reviewed. It is heavy-duty and strong for optimal use with stained glass work. It comes equipped with a 5/8 inch semi-chiseled soldering tip, but can be swapped out for other 5/8 inch sized tips. The SI-P250 does a great job of heating up and maintaining temperature over a long period of time.

Prós

This product is rated one of the best units over 250 watts. It is another heavy-duty unit typically used in industry but is gaining popularity with artists. The Hexacon is ideal for larger stained glass projects and can handle heavy, thick solder joints. It has fast heat recovery so that there is no cold spotting in your work. It is also ideal for quick solder points. In addition, it is also quite easy to use and handle for a decent amount of time. 

Contras

Este é mais um produto que é altamente cotado, mas é relativamente novo no mundo dos vitrais. No momento, não possui comentários negativos.

Conclusão

If you are interested in starting stained glass projects, take the time to review what tools you need and what brands are ideal for the entire project. While we focused mainly on soldering irons in this piece, you also need to do research on good glass cutters, grinding tools, glass etchers, appropriate glass panes, as well as patina and copper foil tape. Any one of these products can prevent you from having a nice finished work, but they can also ensure your pieces look polished and complete. In addition, we provide basic steps for performing your first stained glass piece. If you require more specifics, we recommend doing some online research to see videos or additional reviews on unique stained glass tools.

We have mentioned several high-end solder irons for attaching glass pieces together. They come in a variety of sizes, with different tips, and are capable of a wide range of temperatures. Solder irons used in stained glass projects need to be capable of producing high heat points. This is because the metals you use for stained glass soldering are pretty heavy duty and require a lot of heat to be melted. Always determine your needs are ahead of time and take a moment to review tips and tricks for producing great products. It is especially important to get the right soldering iron because that can make or break your project. You need to be able to tack the glass together and have the solder hold.

We highly recommend researching appropriate solder as well for use with stained glass. Some products are best for electronics or plumbing while others might be more suited to this type of work. As always, we recommend researching online reviews as they can provide insight into the goods and bad of each product.

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