A Useful Tool for Soldering

One of challenging things about soldering wires onto switches and components is not having enough hands. Trying to hold the soldering iron, wire, switch and solder can be a bit tricky at times so in this post I will share with you a simple tool I have found to help.

I have used this tool for all sorts of things from Seep point motors to Din plugs.   The advantage the tool gives you is it has a firm shell and a soft inner similar to a pin cushion. This allows you to stick or plug the item you need to solder wires to into the tool leaving your hands free to solder on the wires. With items like Din plugs that are small and have lots of wires this is particularly usefully as without the tool the wires you’ve already soldered on will tend to pull the Din plug away from where you need it. The tool will keep the plug in the same place.

This tool is available at just about all local shops, is very inexpensive and comes in a variety of sizes. Although you will have to get a new one on a regular basis I recommend getting a bigger one as the smaller ones tend to roll around too much.

So what is this amazing tool? Well, it’s a potato!

Potato Tool 1

As you can see in the photo below the long bar that is used to throw the points on this Seep point motor has simply been stuck into the potato making it very easy to solder on all the wires. The circular hole patterns are from the Din plugs that were made up earlier.  A smiley faced potato is not a necessity but it can brighten your day!

Potato Tool 3

As I said before it is a good idea to regularly change your potato tool, particularly if it turns green!

We are now only two weeks away from the this years NMRA (BR) convention so it’s back to the modelling for me to get my modules finished in time but after the show I will be back to 3D printing and progressing some of the projects.