Advantages of a Solder-Return Mechanism

Why is it necessary to retract solder wire on an auto solder feed system?

Auto Solder Feed Systems like the Hakko 373 or Hakko 374 have automatic or manual functions to feed the solder wire towards the tip for a one-handed operation. While it provides many convenience in terms of soldering, it is essential to retract the solder wire when you are done soldering.

If the solder wire remains close to the soldering tip after soldering is performed, it is melted by the residual heat as the soldering iron cools down. The melted solder forms a ball at the solder tip, resulting in the feed of excess solder or the evaporation of flux at the solder tip. This leads to a wastage of solder wire, and may reduce the lifespan of the soldering tip. To circumvent this, Hakko has incorporated a mechanism to easily retract the exposed solder wire.

Simply insert a flat-blade precision screwdriver into the "adjusting hole" on the flank of main unit to adjust the amount of solder to be returned. The amount of solder to be returned can be adjusted in the range of 0 to 5mm. However, the amount of wire to be returned should be smaller than that to be fed to prevent the wire from being retracted too far. 

With this function, the Hakko 373 and Hakko 374 helps reduce wastage and increases the cost-effectiveness of using an auto solder feed. 

View our products here: Hakko 373