Introduction to Soldering - Part Four


<< Introduction to Soldering - Part One: Soldering Station VS Soldering Iron
<< Introduction to Soldering - Part Two: Equipment Needed

<< Introduction to Soldering - Part Three: What is Desoldering?

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW TO BEGIN SOLDERING: Selecting the right tip

When it comes to soldering, it is important to have the right soldering tip or desoldering nozzle for your application. The best tip for your application is determined by the shape, diameter and the overall size of the tip. 

Different shapes of products serve different functions and are used in different applications. View the images below for the most commonly used tip shapes, or visit our Tips Selection Guide for more tip shapes and examples.

Round Tip
Round Tip
Bevel Tip
Bevel Tip
Chisel Tip
Chisel Tip
Conical Tip
Conical Tip
Knife Tip
Knife Tip


 Comparison of tip diameter to component

After selecting the right shape for your application, we move on to choosing the right diameter of the tips. Ideally, the tip used should be one that closely matches in size to your workpiece. This maximizes the surface area of the workpiece in contact with the soldering tip or nozzle, encouraging efficient heat transfer.

A tip that is smaller than the workpiece faces a larger drop in tip temperature and requires more time to cover the component with sufficient solder. A tip that is too big may cause damage to the Printed Wiring Board (PWB) and an excess of solder on the components. 

However, if the diameter of the tip is restricted by the narrow spaces on a circuit board, you should then use a tip that is small enough to navigate through the components, but still sufficiently large enough to ensure optimal heat transfer.


After selecting both the tip shape and diameter, the next focus is on the heat capacity. A tip with a larger overall size tends to have a higher heat storage capacity. 

T12-D12 Hakko Soldering TipT12-DL12 Hakko Soldering Tip

Comparing the tips above, they both have the same diameter of 1.2mm, the best fit for the workpiece. However, T12-DL12 has a larger size compared to T12-D12. This means that T12-DL12 has a higher heat storage capacity and is able to transfer heat more efficiently than T12-D12. 

In situations where the tip diameters are the same, it is always preferable to choose a tip with the biggest size, unless restricted by narrow spaces on the circuit board. 


Benefits of selecting the right tip/nozzle
  • Efficient heat transfer leading to easy wetting by solder
  • Lower temperature required
  • Less oxidation of soldering tip
  • Prolonged lifespan of soldering tip
  • Reduced operating costs as soldering tips do not need to be changed frequently 

You may take a look at our online catalogue for the specifications of the various tips and nozzles to see which suits you best. It is recommended to have a couple of different tips instead of using just 1 for every application as it provides a more efficient and enjoyable soldering experience.

Still unsure of which to get? Drop us a message with details of your experience level as well as the types of projects you are working on, and our team will suggest the product with the best fit! 

 << Introduction to Soldering - Part One: Soldering Station VS Soldering Iron
<< Introduction to Soldering - Part Two: Equipment Needed

<< Introduction to Soldering - Part Three: What is Desoldering?