Introduction to Basic Electronic Tools
Assembling electronics project and making it works is a good start in helping one to learn troubleshooting methods as well as becoming familiar with your tools, test equipment, electronic schematics and component color codes.
It's hard to do a good job of electronics construction unless proper electronic tools and knowledge of using them are adequate. Some of the basic tools that should prove useful are discussed here.
Electric Drill and Drill Bits
Electric drill and drill bits in the range of 1/8 inch to 1/2 inch will come in handy when you need to drill holes on the printed circuit board that has been etched. Drilling of plastic or metal enclosure that houses the printed circuit board are sometimes necessary. A suitable PCB high speed drill can be easily obtained from any electronic shop.
A 20 Watt to 30 Watt soldering iron with tips of 1/8 inch to 1/2 inch can be used for soldering of through hole components. Soldering of surface mount components may require smaller tips depending on the sizes of the components. Soldering iron normally will last a long time if it is taken care of properly by keeping the tips clean and well tinned.
Wire stripper is used to strip off wire insulator from its conductor before it is used to connect to another wire or soldered into the printed circuit board. Some wire stripper or wire cutter has a measurement engraved on it to indicate the length that will be stripped.
Long nose Plier
A 4-inch long nose plier will come in handy when you need to hold components that have short leads that need to be soldered onto the PCB but will be too hot to handle with bare hands. It will also be useful to hold the component that needs to be de-soldered from the board.
A 4-inch side cutting plier will come in handy as one of the electronic tools when one need to trim off excess component leads on the printed circuit board. It can also be used to cut wires into shorter length before being used.
Small tweezer is used to hold small components especially when doing soldering and de-soldering of surface mount components.
Allen Wrench set
Allen wrench set is sometimes used to unscrew or screw Allen type of screws.
Philips Head Screwdrivers
Various sizes of Philips head screwdrivers will be handy as a lot of electronics projects that use screws are Philips Head type.
Flat Head Screwdrivers
Flat head screwdrivers of various sizes are also necessary as many screws that are used are of this type.
A small, light hammer will be useful when assembling projects that involved casing.
Socket wrench sets
A socket wrench sets that include nut drivers, hex drivers, and starters in assorted sizes will come in handy during the assembly work of electronics project.
Pocket Knife will be useful when one need to cut PCB, wires or remove some cooper from the printed circuit board.
Maintenance Tips Of Electronic Tools
Good quality tools that are being purchased can last a lifetime if they are taken care of properly. Ensure that the tools are used only for their intended purposes, keep them lubricated with a light film of oil to inhibit rust, keep the tools clean and sharp, keep the soldering tips clean and well tinned and ensure that proper use of the tools are always adhered to by following the instructions of using the tools.
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