Weller WLC100 Review
The Weller WLC100 is one of the oldest soldering stations that’s still manufactured. It’s a really simple device that does everything you’d expect from it and does it well. That and compared to it’s competitors, it is surprisingly cheap. Which is also the reason why Weller WLC100 is the most recommended soldering station for beginners. I bought mine a couple of years ago and it still works like new. So I believe that the soldering station requires a review now that Weller has proved it’s quality.
- Wattage: 5W – 40W
- Temperature: 177C – 482C / 350F – 900F
- Voltage input: 120V
In The Box
- Weller WLC100 soldering station
- WLC100 soldering iron
- ST3 iron-plated 1/8″ screwdriver tip
- Iron stand
The WLC100 is the most basic soldering station from Weller. You can tell that immediately from the design. Still, it’s a consumer model and the simple design is perfectly fine for beginners. The station itself has a base dimension of 140×114×89 mm / 5.5×4.5×3.5″. It’s really nice and compact. Barely takes up any space on a desk. The station is fully made out of plastic and has a red finish.
Like all soldering stations, it also comes with a feature to control the wattage, which in return controls the temperature. For that, the station has a control panel which has power switch and a knob. The knob has 5 dials which are used to set the wattage. It’s really easy to use and that’s definitely the plus side of the station. The base also has an area for a sponge and an Iron stand. The sponge that comes with the WLC100 looks pretty thin at first. Just place it into water and it will expand into a proper size sponge.
There is also a soldering iron connection slot on the left side of the station. The WLC100 soldering iron has a decent 1.2 m / 4 ft cable that’s at last long enough for me. I also keep it close to me. Having the soldering iron and station separate also means that you can change the iron in the future if it should break for some reason. I have had mine for over 2 years now and nothing has happened to it so far. You will probably outgrow it anyways way before the soldering iron should ever break. The soldering iron itself is pretty light and comfortable to use.
For soldering, Weller has also included a ST3 iron-plated 1/8″ screwdriver tip. It’s already attached to the soldering iron but you can change it for a different tip as well later on. The iron has a little screw near the tip that you need to unscrew and that’s it. Overall both the soldering stations and irons build quality lives up to the Weller reputation.
Another thing that makes the Weller WLC100 so good is it’s reliability. The soldering iron heats up really fast and most importantly holds the heat. It does however take some time to find the right wattage at first. That mostly depends on the soldering iron tip.
For ST3, it’s best to keep the wattage level between 3 and 4. At least for me, that has given the best result. You can really test it yourself based on when the tin melts and how it runs. With finer tips, you can lower the wattage quite a bit. So there is definitely a bit of a learning curve there.
Oh and there is also a way to heat it up faster as well. Just turn the knob straight to level 5, keep it there for a minute and then lower it back to between 3 and 4. That’s the fastest way to heat up the soldering iron.
The Weller WLC100 soldering station is fantastic for hobby and DIY use. It’s definitely the best value option for beginners as you don’t have to worry about temperature changes. It really makes your life easier if you are just learning or want to solder without any issues. Definitely a well worth buy!