Auto Heat Limiter for Soldering Irons

Posted on Feb 5, 2014

Certain part of this circuit is directly connected to AC mains. Therefore, do not touch whilst in operation. Disclaimer Please take the greatest of care in handling AC mains supply while constructing this project. If you have no knowledge of mains wiring or unfamiliar with household mains supply, PLEASE DO NOT ATTEMPT CONSTRUCTION. I take

Auto Heat Limiter for Soldering Irons
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no responsibility in any personal injury or loss of life or properties suffered by any person while undertaking the construction of this project or using the end product by following my instructions. Usually a soldering iron takes a couple of minutes to get adequately heated up to melt the solder, after which the heat generated is much above the requirement and is wasted. Moreover, excessive heat decreases the life of the bit and the element, causing serious damage to the components. Once the main is switched on, an approximate 15v drop of the positive half cycle across R5 is detected and supplied to Q1 (SL100 or D313), which acts as a voltage regulator. Zener diode D2 together with diode D3 (yellow LED) stabilizes the emitter voltage of Q1 at 13. 2Vdc, which is then delivered to the relay circuit built around Q2 and C3. Capacitor C3 charges through the base-emitter path of Q2 and causes the relay to actuate, which in turn allows both the half cycles of the AC mains to flow through diode D6 and R5 to the load to heat it up at a normal rate. After a certain lapse of time (about 2 minutes preset) C3 saturates and Q2 stops conducting through the relay, thus switching on series diode D5 to allow only half of the Ac cycle through the load. After switching off the system, C3 discharges very slowly through R2 and R3. Before C3 gets completely discharged, if the power is switched on again, C3 takes a shorter time to reach the...

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