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FAQ - First Timers Considering an amp or speaker build?

 
 
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Old 6th January 2006, 09:41 PM
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Default What tools do I need?

A soldering iron like the 25W Antex from Maplin catalogue No. FR12, buy an additional smaller tip with it (Maplin FT04), you will need the smaller tip for soldering the small components and the larger standard tip will transfer heat better when soldering heavy wires and valve sockets.

Alternatively go for the luxury of 2 or 3 irons, maybe an 18W with a small tip (Maplin FY62), a 25W iron with larger tip and a 40W iron with chisel tip depending on the soldering task in-hand.

'Hard-wired' kits such as the WAD KiT34 will require more power to solder than kits based on printed circuit boards so plan ahead and buy the appropriate soldering iron.

If you can afford it then the top recommendation is a temperature-controlled iron with stand, like the Maplin BP53.

A small pair of 120-130mm Long Nose or Snipe nose pliers, Maplin GW94 or GW97 or GW95.

A pair of miniature 120-130mm side cutters, Maplin GW96.

A pair of cable strippers, Maplin MC51.

A Set of Allen Keys, Maplin AQ76.

A selection of small, flat blade screwdrivers.

A selection of small, cross-headed screwdrivers.

A Solder sucker for de-soldering, Maplin FR26.

A pair of Safety specs, Maplin KE83.

Solder, Maplin GU97.

Soldering iron stand, Maplin BP57.

A Face Mask if you find solder fumes irritable.

Also, invest in a quality digital multimeter (DMM), Maplin stock an extensive range. Maplin WGO20 no. GW26 is ideal but adequate ones can be bought for around £20.

Try to avoid Auto Ranging DMM's, they can cause confusion and be misleading to first time users, go for a manual switch type like the WGO20 above.
 

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