Please read the whole manual to understand how the soldering station works.
You can see the current temp of the soldering iron at the top left of the screen in all modes (heating ON/OFF or sleeping).
Use the rotary encoder to set the target temp. After enabling or disabling heating, the last value will be stored in memory. It will remember that target the next time you will power on your station.
Click once to enable heating. You should listen 1 “beep”.
You will see on the screen that heating mode is “ON” and the iron’ s temp will start to rise. Next to the target temp you will see the percentage of the power that’s delivered on the iron. You will see it dropping when the iron’ s temp is reaching the target.
The progress bar visualizes the temp difference between the current and the target temp. You should see two dots in the middle when the current temp is close to the target.
Click the button at any point to stop heating. You will listen 2 “beeps”, the power will drop to 0% and the temperature should start dropping.
If you remove the iron you will see the “Please connect Iron” message on the screen. If the heating was on, it will turn off and won’t turn on automatically. You have to press the button again after connecting the iron.
The target could be adjusted between 200˚C and 400˚C. There is a safety feature that will turn off heating if the iron’ s temp exceeds 420˚C for more than 5″.
The LCD brightness could be adjusted withing the menu. The brightness value is also stored in memory.
First power on
The first time you will power on your soldering station you should erase the EEPROM to initialize all the parameters and make sure everything will work fine.
Power off your station if it ‘s powered on.
Keep pressing the button and power on the station. You should enter in the menu.
You can navigate through the menus using the encoder and enter in a menu by clicking the button.
Find the “Reset Data” menu and click once. You will see “RESET NO” on the screen.
Rotate the encoder until you see “RESET YES” and click once. You should listen two “beeps” verifying that the EEPROM data have been reset.
Click on “Save and Exit” and you should see the main screen. The firmware is using a PID algorithm. You won’t be able to heat the iron at this point because the P,I,D parameters have been reset.
Read below for the calibration process.
You need an external device that could measure the iron’ s temperature to calibrate the soldering station.
First of all your station should maintain the iron’ s temp near the target even if the showed temp is not correct.
If you have reset the EEPROM data, the P,I,D parameters will be zero and you won’t be able to heat the iron.
Enter in the menu and click on “PID Adjustment”. When you see [P] you can adjust the “P” parameter using the encoder. Click once to verify that and enter in “I” adjustment. Do the same for “D” adjustment. After adjusting all P,I,D you will go back in main menu.
Enter in “Sensor Data” menu and change it from “OFF” to “ON” using the encoder. Click again to go back in main menu.
Click on “Save and Exit”. You will listen 2 “beeps” verifying all the parameters are stored in EEPROM and you will see the main screen.
Now, next to the target temp you won’t see the power percentage, but you will get a value that’s read by the iron’ s sensor. This value is the analog reading from the arduino and is between 0 and 1023. In room temperature it should be about 200. If it’ s close to 1000 the iron is not detected.
If the temperature is not maintained successfully you should adjust the P,I,D values again.
There are so many parameters that make every station differ from another (soldering iron, power source, resistors tolerance e.t.c). Therefore there is no way to know what’s the best P,I,D values for each station.
I found that P=40.0, I=10.0 and D=30.0 could work and maintain the temperature. It’s not the best but it’s a start. You could experiment with these values until you have the best results.
Read about the PID controller if you need more information on how it works.
You have to take two measurements using an external device (like a thermocouple) of the iron’ s tip temperature and note the analog values that corresponds to these temperatures.
For this example I will calibrate the station at 25˚C and 280˚C.
Measure the iron’s temp while heating is off (room temperature). That will be Temp1. In this example Temp1 = 25˚C.
Note the analog value that was shown on the screen when the measured temp was 25˚C. That will be Data1. At 25˚C Data1 = 225.
Set the target at 280˚C and wait to reach and maintain the temperature at 280˚C.
Measure the temp using an external thermocouple. That’ s Temp2. In our example I meauared Temp2 = 265˚C.
The analog value on the screen will be Data2. At 265˚C, Data2 = 490.
Turn off the station and enter in the “Calibration” menu to calibrate the station using these data.
When you see “1:” you will store the data for your first measurement. Using the encoder adjust the temp value. Click once to edit the analog data that you read on the screen when you got the first measurement.
In our example at 25˚C the data was 225.
Click again and you will see “2:” on the screen. Do the same for the second measurement.
In our example at 265˚C the data was 490.
Store those data and click again to go back in the menu.
Click on “Save & exit”.
The iron is now calibrated and the software knows how to translate the analog data to temperature for your specific soldering iron.
You could experiment with other target temperatures until you have the best results.
You should repeat the calibration process if you replace your soldering iron.
Sleep and Auto-OFF functions
These functions are optional and require a few modifications.
Read here how to modify your soldering iron and enable Sleep and Auto-Turn OFF functions.
Get in the “Sleep & OFF” menu and enable “SLEEP” or “AUTO-TURN OFF” or both. You will be able to adjust time for each function after enabling it. Click “Save & Exit”.
Put the iron on its stand and you should see a square symbol at the bottom left. Lift the iron and the symbol should disappear.
If you don’t see the square symbol on the screen, verify the reed switch is working properly and it’s closed near a magnet.
(The square symbol is not showed up if both “SLEEP” and “AUTO-TURN OFF” functions are disabled.)
Enable heating, lift the iron and leave it again on the stand. The square symbol has become a dotted symbol.
It means that the iron has been lifted at least once since the heating was started and it will start counting down to enter Sleep Mode or Turn OFF.
It helps to prevent sleeping or turn off if the iron hasn’t been lifted at least once since heating was started.
To enter Sleep Mode you should see the dotted symbol on the screen continuously for the time amount you have selected in the menu.
If you have selected 0″ it will enter Sleep Mode immediately.
In Sleep Mode the target temp is set at 150˚C and helps to keep the iron hot enough for the next time you need to use it but also extend its life.
Lift the iron or just click the button once to exit Sleep Mode.
If you lift it, it will start heating and it will start counting down again to enter Sleep Mode as soon as you leave it on the stand (even if the target hasn’t been reached).
If you press the button and not lift the iron, it will start heating but it won’t count down for sleeping until you lift it at least once again (you will notice the dotted symbol has become square again).
The Auto-Turn OFF function disables heating if you leave the iron on its stand.
If Sleep Mode is also enabled it starts counting down for “Auto-Turn OFF” after entering Sleep Mode. If not, it starts counting down as soon as you put the iron on the stand.
You need to click the button to start heating again. The dotted symbol has become square and you need to lift it again at least once to start counting down for Sleep Mode or Auto-Turn OFF.
Experiment with these functions with short time amounts to understand better how it works in real life.