OKI Metcal MFR-1160 Soldering Repair

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For years now, I have been getting requests to help with repairs of equipment, in particular about the Novation Launchpads. I do try and help where I can but I want to share the information and experience that I am giving out. I have come to the conclusion that I need to make a platform where you can submit your problems and repairs. The platform is Fix My Stuff and is currently under development. Check it out and sign up to get notified when it will become live. If you’re a web developer/designer, please help or review the platform. Any problems email me at tinkersprojects@gmail.com.

I have had this iron for years and the other day, it decided to not to turn on. i was very pissed off due to it was very expensive and i love using it. It is more or less a smart soldering iron, it can sense how much heat is required to solder different size pads or solder. I use this a lot and has been great (even tho i need new tips) and i would recommend it to anyone. While it was down and not working, I was using my old iron that i had not used in a very long time, it was weird.
I took it apart to see if i could fix it and was a bit confusing at first but after a while started to understand how it worked. I traced the problem to where it was, it was a 60V to 12V step down regulator. I don’t know exactly what the problem was but it was not outputting the 12V power need to run the controller for the iron. After i attached 12V power from a lab power supply, the iron would turn on. I changed the regulator, tested few other and re-solder them. I got it back up and running, working like it use to.
The over all design of this iron is very interesting, from the electronics inside to the case design. Everything in this iron look very well designed.

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