Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving 2013 from Q Source

Happy Thanksgiving from the Q Source family! We are, as always, very thankful for your continued support of our Web site, blog, and social media community. We wish you and your loved ones a very warm, loving, and safe holiday filled with family, football, and full bellies.

Please Note: The Q Source office will be closed on Thanksgiving Day (November 28th) and Friday (November 29th). QSource.com is available 24/7 and any orders placed over the holiday break will be processed as soon as possible on Monday, December 2nd. For additional questions about such orders, please send us an email or give us a call (800-966-6020).



If there's a product or topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share this blog post with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about Q Source please leave us a message in the comments section.

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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

10 Ways to Prolong Tip Life When Using Lead-Free Solder – Guest Blog

Guest blog by Tom Krisulewicz, Field Applications Manager, Weller Tools

Our guest blogger from Weller Tools presents ten steps for extending tip life when working with lead-free solder. Culled from Weller's decades of experience and expertise with soldering and desoldering technology, these strategies will help prolong the life of your soldering equipment and promote a successful soldering process.

  1. Choose the largest possible solder tip for the application: Larger tips provide better heat transfer and have more iron plating, which helps to extend tip life.
  2. Do not exceed 725°F: Lead-free solder does not require a higher soldering temperature (high temperature increases tip-plating erosion). Also, at higher temperatures, fluxes degrade faster and black residues remain on the tip surface. Therefore, lowering the soldering temperature reduces oxidation and reduces flux splattering.
  3. Choose the right solder alloy (SAC if possible) and flux to reduce wear of soldering tips.
  4. Use high-powered soldering tools (80-200 Watts) with optimum temperature control that, in most cases, do the job at lower temperatures: Weller's WP80, WP120, WSP150, WXP65, WXP120, and WXP200 combine high power with optimized heat transfer.
  5. Dry clean tips with the Weller WDC or WDC2 to keep them wettable longer: Wet sponges cause thermal shock, remove the majority of the tinning and don't properly remove flux residues.
  6. Always tin the tip to prevent oxidation and surface contamination: Apply a thin coating of solder to the tip after cleaning and before placing in the soldering tool holder. Use the WPB1 Polishing Bar to clean and renew soldering tips (use only when tip is cold).
  7. Use all available functions and accessories to reduce the tip temperature (Standby, Auto-Off, Temperature Pre-sets, Stop-and-Go Tool Holders, etc.) or turn the soldering tool down during breaks. For instance, the WDH10T & WDH20T Stop-and-Go Tool Holders switch on the soldering tool when removed from the holder.
  8. Use WDC2 Dry Tip Cleaner, which is an optional accessory for all WDH Series tool holders.
  9. Use the WHP3000 Preheating Plate, which reduces the amount of heat required from the soldering tip by heating up the PCB to a pre-selected temperature: A highly efficient IR heater with equal heat distribution will improve the hand-soldering process without the risk of partial overheat.
  10. Use a Tip Activator to rejuvenate oxidized or contaminated soldering tips. Re-tin after use with the Tip Activator at a low temperature to prevent oxidation.
Q Source would like to thank our guest blogger, Tom Krisulewicz, from Weller Tools. Thank you very much for your contribution to The Q Source Resource.

For more information, or to place an order for the Weller soldering products mentioned in this blog, please visit our Weller Department at QSource.com. You may also be interested in checking out our Soldering, Desoldering & Rework Department. Questions and orders may also be submitted via phone (800-966-6020) or email.


If there's a product or topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share this blog post with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about tip life and working with lead-free solder please leave us a message in the comments section.

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Monday, November 25, 2013

The Social Rewind for November 25, 2013

Are you subscribed to multiple social media networks like we are? Do you find it difficult it to keep up with all of the updates from the people you follow? Do you feel like you’re missing a lot of good information?

“The Social Rewind,” is a weekly blog digest of what we thought were the most interesting social media posts of the previous week. Q Source follows some really fascinating companies and individuals on Twitter, Facebook & Google+ and we want to share the best of what they have to say.

First off, in a week that saw a lot of Big Brother, Sci-Fi-becomes-real type of stories, Workrite shared an article about the scary and unsettling future of work:

TE Connectivity featured this story about smart streetlights that can detect tons of data (like audio, video, weather, etc.) and send it to a cloud-based database:

3M told us about new technology that allows for security features such as floating images, signatures, and other data to be embedded onto secure identification documents:

Post by 3M.

Gooch & Housego posted about a technology that had every Trekkie on the edge of their seat:

Should we be worried about the future of imaging technology? EE Times asks important questions about privacy such as who’s watching and why:

As for our favorite post from our own social media updates, we finished out the week with an acknowledgement of the 50th anniversary of JFK’s assassination:

So, there you have it. A quick look at a few of last week’s most interesting social media posts. We hope you enjoyed this week’s Social Rewind and we’d love it if you shared other interesting blog posts with us. See you next week! Thanks for reading!


If there's topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource (http://blog.qsource.com) write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share our blog posts with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about Q Source or The Q Source Resource please leave us a message in the comments section.

For additional Q Source news, product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter (http://www.qsource.com/t-subscribe.aspx).

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Daylight's Foldi LED Lamp: A Great, Inexpensive Idea for Gift Givers

Are you like us, always searching for that perfect gift during the holidays? Well, we've heard of an awesome gift idea and we wanted to share it with you: Daylight Company's Gift Giver Promo features their next-generation Foldi™ LED Lamps for just $49.99 (that's 50% OFF!) until December 31, 2013.

The Daylight Foldi LED Lamp is a compact, portable lamp that is perfect for reading, laptop lighting, hobbies, and other tasks. Available in white or black, this designer lamp features sleek lines and 30 bright LEDs that reduce glare, increase contrast, and make tasks easier.

The Foldi Lamp lasts up to eight hours on 3 AA batteries, but when using the included USB power cord you'll get unlimited, beautiful full-spectrum natural daylight. Plus, because the Foldi is lightweight, portable, and foldable you can move it to wherever you need your light to be and then fold it up for quick storage.

This compact LED task lamp packs some powerful features. Let's take a look at the specifications:
  • Colors: White or Black
  • Width: 3" (7.5 cm)
  • Height: 9" (23.3 cm)
  • Depth: 1.5" (3.3 cm)
  • Weight: 1 lb. (0.5 kg)
  • Number of bulbs: 30 LEDs (95 W)
  • Brightness: 3.01 Lux at 15 cm and 900 Lux at 30 cm
  • Total Amount of Visible Light Emitted in Lumens: 180 lm
  • USB Cable: Extra-long 5.25' (1.6 m)
Considering these impressive features, we have no doubt this lamp will make a great gift. And at just $49.99 through the holidays, why not pick one up for yourself, too?

For more information about Daylight's Foldi Lamps or other Daylight products please visit QSource.com. You can also give us a call at 800-966-6020 or contact us via email.


If there's a product or topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share this blog post with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about Daylight’s Gift Giver Promo please leave us a message in the comments section.

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Monday, November 18, 2013

The Social Rewind for November 18, 2013

Are you subscribed to multiple social media networks like we are? Do you find it difficult it to keep up with all of the updates from the people you follow? Do you feel like you’re missing a lot of good information?

“The Social Rewind,” is a weekly blog digest of what we thought were the most interesting social media posts of the previous week. Q Source follows some really fascinating companies and individuals on Twitter, Facebook & Google+ and we want to share the best of what they have to say.

First off this week, our friends over at CCI posted this touching photo in honor of Veterans Day:

On Tuesday, Transforming Technologies posted an image reflecting on another noteworthy day:

Metal from plants? Lab Equipment magazine made us wonder what might fall out if we shook that tree next to our office:

Was it an accident that YouTube shared this Mental Floss video about accidental scientific discoveries:

Mashable gave us a peak at the most heart-warming story of the week, the adventures of Batkid:

As for our favorite post from our own social media updates, we were inspired by this on-target quote by Nolan Bushnell:

So, there you have it. A quick look at a few of last week’s most interesting social media posts. We hope you enjoyed this week’s Social Rewind and we’d love it if you shared other interesting blog posts with us. See you next week! Thanks for reading!


If there's topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource (http://blog.qsource.com) write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share our blog posts with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about Q Source or The Q Source Resource please leave us a message in the comments section.

For additional Q Source news, product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter (http://www.qsource.com/t-subscribe.aspx).

Friday, November 15, 2013

Q Source Removing Google Checkout Payment Option

Google has announced that their Google Checkout service will be retired as of November 20, 2013. QSource.com will remove this as a payment option by November 19th.

As of November 20th, available checkout payment choices at QSource.com will include:
  • PayPal
  • MasterCard
  • Visa
  • American Express
  • Discover Card
For questions, or additional information, about payment options please visit QSource.com, call us (800-966-6020), or send us an email. For other questions about shopping at QSource.com (shipping info, returns, order status) please visit our Customer Service page.

If there's a product or topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share this blog post with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about QSource.com or related topics please leave us a message in the comments section.

For additional Q Source product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

7 Complete Soldering Stations Under $250

The sheer number of soldering stations available on the market (Q Source offers almost 60 models on our Web site) can make choosing the right one a little confusing at times. Whether you're looking for a particular set of attributes, application-specific features or shopping by price, we want to help you select the best possible station for your needs.

With that in mind, and as a launching point for a new series of articles, we present a look at a selection of complete* soldering stations (power unit, soldering iron, and stand). Listed in order of price, (lowest to highest) here are 7 Complete Soldering Stations Under $250:

  1. Weller WLC100 Hobbyist Soldering Station
    Regular Price: $51.00
    Q Price: $42.71
    SKU: C010-000366
    Manufacturer Part #: WLC100
    • Suitable for DIY applications, students, and hobbyists
    • Features a variable power control producing 5 – 40 watts and an on/off switch with a power indicator light
    • Temperature range to 900° F
    • Ships with a lightweight, cushioned-grip pencil iron; a safety guard iron holder, an ST3 iron-plated copper tip, and a natural sponge tip cleaning pad

  2. Hakko FX-888D Digital Soldering Station
    Regular Price: $107.47
    Q Price: $91.35
    SKU: H001-002544
    Manufacturer Part #: FX888D-23BY
    • Temperature-adjustable, compact soldering station
    • Provides increased thermal performance and quicker thermal recovery time
    • Digital station offers selectable preset temperatures, password protection, digital calibration, and a low temperature alarm
    • Ships with the FX-8801 soldering iron, a T18-D16 tip, the FH800-01BY iron holder, an A1561 tip cleaning wire, and the A1559 cleaning sponge (purchase the FX-888D from QSource.com and receive an additional A1559 sponge for FREE)

  3. Weller WES51 ESD-Safe Analog Soldering Station
    Regular Price: $127.00
    Q Price: $115.00
    SKU: C010-000383
    Manufacturer Part #: WES51
    • Designed for continuous production soldering
    • Heater/sensor combination allow for fast heat up and speedy temperature recovery times
    • Features a wireless temperature lockout and an automatic shut off function
    • 50-watt unit uses ET Series tips


  4. Weller WTCPT 120V/60W Temperature-Controlled Soldering Station
    Regular Price: $176.00
    Q Price: $145.00
    SKU: C010-000362
    Manufacturer Part #: WTCPT
    • ESD-safe, temperature-controlled station with a ferromagnetic temperature sensor in the tip
    • Uses a distinctive closed-loop method for maximum tip temperature control
    • Fast iron changes with the quick-disconnect plug
    • On/off indicated by a lighted rocker switch

  5. Weller WTCPTD 240V/60W Temperature-Controlled Soldering Station
    Regular Price: $176.00
    Q Price: $145.00
    SKU: C010-000363
    Manufacturer Part #: WTCPTD
    • ESD-safe, temperature-controlled station protects sensitive components
    • Ships with a PTA7 tip and can utilize tips in the 600° F, 700° F, and 800° F temperature ranges
    • Quick-disconnect plug speeds up soldering iron changes
    • Lighted rocker switch shows whether the unit is on or off

  6. Weller WESD51 50W Digital Soldering Station
    Regular Price: $182.00
    Q Price: $156.00
    SKU: C010-000392
    Manufacturer Part #: WESD51
    • ESD-safe station perfect for continuous production soldering
    • Quick heat up and temperature recovery using an innovative heater/sensor combo
    • Stops unauthorized temperature changes with its wireless temperature lockout function
    • Prolongs tip life and conserves energy via its automatic shut off feature

  7. OKi PS-900 SmartHeat® ESD-Safe High Powered Thermal Control Soldering System
    Regular Price: $256.47
    Q Price: $243.65
    SKU: M020-001639
    Manufacturer Part #: PS-900
    • Designed for lead-free soldering applications, multilayer boards, and thermally demanding components
    • SmartHeat Technology requires no calibration and allows for soldering at lower temperatures
    • At home in both small and large production environments
    • Utilizes high-quality tips for low-cost operation
* Please note: The Weller WD1 Digital Soldering Station Power Unit (Q Source #: C010-000407, Manufacturer Part #: WD1) is also available for under $250 but does not include an iron or stand.

Whether you're just starting out in soldering, or you need a professional-level unit, each of these high-quality soldering station packages offers the specifications and capabilities to help you get the job done at an excellent low cost. The stations listed here range in price from just over $42 to a little over $243 and are made by top manufacturers (Weller, Hakko, and OKi/Metcal). Next time we'll look at a new group of stations including a few JBC Tools models.

For more information or to purchase any of these powerful stations please visit our Soldering Station Department at QSource.com. You can also give us a call at 800-966-6020 or contact us via email.

If there's a product or topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share this blog post with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about any of the soldering stations we carry or related topics please leave us a message in the comments section.

For additional Q Source product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.

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Monday, November 11, 2013

The Social Rewind for November 11, 2013

Are you subscribed to multiple social media networks like we are? Do you find it difficult it to keep up with all of the updates from the people you follow? Do you feel like you’re missing a lot of good information?

“The Social Rewind,” is a weekly blog digest of what we thought were the most interesting social media posts of the previous week. Q Source follows some really fascinating companies and individuals on Twitter, Facebook & Google+ and we want to share the best of what they have to say.

First off this week, shades of Fantastic Voyage, TE Connectivity shared this post about the concept of tiny robots flying around inside our bodies and zapping cancer cells in the bloodstream:

Workrite caused us to have office-envy with this post about some amazing new offices of the future:

We got another interesting look at technology being used to fight cancer in this post by Gooch & Housego:

MAKE’s post showing some beautiful renderings of Dungeons & Dragons maps from the 1980s made us want to reach for our 12-sided dice:

3D-printed Happy Meal toys? WB Engineering shared this great posts about how businesses can potentially use 3D technology for on-demand customer satisfaction:

As for our favorite post from our own social media updates, we shared a quote about a potential controversial OSHA plan to publish workplace illness/injury data:

So, there you have it. A quick look at a few of last week’s most interesting social media posts. We hope you enjoyed this week’s Social Rewind and we’d love it if you shared other interesting blog posts with us. See you next week! Thanks for reading!


If there's topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share our blog posts with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about Q Source or The Q Source Resource please leave us a message in the comments section.

For additional Q Source news, product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Production Basics Creates New How-To Video Series

No one likes a good how-to video more than us, and that’s why we were so excited to hear about Production Basics’ new series of instructional videos. These new videos focus on how-to assemble a variety of their products.

The ten videos (counting two factory tours that look at manufacturing processes) range in length from 1:56 to 6:42. Available either on the Production Basics site or on their YouTube Channel, the videos include the following titles:
  • How to Assemble a C-Leg Station – Learn how to assemble a Stand-Alone C-Leg Workstation
  • How to Assemble an RTW Table - Watch how to put together an RTW Table
  • How to Assemble & Install a Drawer Mounting Kit (for RTW, Easy-Lift 4-Post) - A demonstration of the correct way to align and attach Drawer Mounting Kits on your workbench
  • How to Attach a Basic Nut & Bolt – See how quick and easy it is to attach basic nuts & bolts
  • How to Assemble & Install a Riser Shelf – Learn a few useful tips for assembling a Riser Shelf
  • How to Assemble & Install a Power Rail – An excellent demo showing how to install the Power Rail’s surface mount and upright mounting brackets
  • How to Install Uprights (for RTW, PedSys and Easy Lift 4-post) – Find out how to use uprights to install accessories above the worksurface
  • How to Reposition a Drawer Slide – Watch this video to see how easy it is to position drawer slides to allow for different sizes of drawers or drawer order
  • Tour our Factory- Worksurface Manufacturing – An interesting tour of Production Basics Worksurface Processing Department at their Billerica, MA facility
  • Tour our Factory - Welding Work Bench Frames – Another excellent tour of the Billerica, MA facility with a focus on welding C-Leg Frames
These new videos are an incredibly useful resource. For more information about Production Basics products please visit QSource.com. To place an order for any Production Basics products, including the RTW Series and C-Leg Series, please visit our site or contact us via phone (800-966-6020) or email.


If there's a specific product or topic that you'd like to see The Q Source Resource cover please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share this blog post with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about Production Basics products please leave us a message in the comments section.

For additional Q Source product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.

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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

3M Removes Ship Hold on Moisture Barrier Bags: Dri-Shield 2000, 2700, 3000, & 3400 Series Available for Purchase

Back in late August/early September, we reported that 3M™ had placed a shipping hold on a number of their Moisture Barrier Bags (Dri-Shield 2000, 2700, 3000 and 3400 Series). We have now been informed that the shipping hold has been removed and these bags are once again available for purchase.

Yesterday, November 4th, we received the following information from 3M:

This letter is to notify you that all 3M Moisture Barrier Bag products previously placed on ship hold have been released from ship hold and are available for sale. We apologize for any inconvenience you have experienced during the period of this ship hold, as we investigated the Moisture Vapor Transmission Rate (MVTR) performance of these bags.

3M’s ship hold allowed them to have two different MVTR tests, including using MOCON™ infrared sensing technology and MIL-STD-3010C Test Method 3030 gravimetric testing, performed by qualified third parties. 3M is advising that users of these bags re-evaluate the MVTR performance to ensure that it meets their application needs.

The following charts* contain the MVTR performance and other data results from 3M’s latest testing:

3M Moisture Barrier Bag Dri-Shield 2000


3M Moisture Barrier Bag Dri-Shield 2700


3M Moisture Barrier Bag Dri-Shield 3000


3M Moisture Barrier Bag Dri-Shield 3400


* These charts can also be downloaded at www.3M.com/static.

For more information about, or to place an order for 3M Dri-Shield 2000, 2700, 3000, or 3400 Series Moisture Barrier Bags please visit QSource.com. You can also give us a call at 800-966-6020 or contact us via email.


If there's a product or topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share this blog post with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about 3M Moisture Barrier Bags or related topics please leave us a message in the comments section.

For additional Q Source product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.

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Monday, November 4, 2013

The Social Rewind for November 4, 2013: Special Halloween Edition

Are you subscribed to multiple social media networks like we are? Do you find it difficult it to keep up with all of the updates from the people you follow? Do you feel like you’re missing a lot of good information? “The Social Rewind,” is a weekly blog digest of what we thought were the most interesting social media posts of the previous week. Q Source follows some really fascinating companies and individuals on Twitter, Facebook & Google+ and we want to share the best of what they have to say.

Halloween was last Thursday and there were so many amazing Halloween-related social media posts that we decided to devote this entire edition to them.

First off this week, Workrite shared a post about the most iconic costumes of the past 20 years and we were disappointed that the good ol’ white-sheet-with-the-eyes-cut-out ghost wasn’t among them:

R&R Lotion posted this photo of their crew AFTER they took off their Halloween costumes:

There’s no doubt that Tektronix really, really, REALLY gets into the Halloween spirit…:

Combining the horrors of Halloween with the fright-fest of doing your taxes, Evil Mad Scientist left us wondering if the IRS would mind getting this in the mail:

The folks at MAKE had us reaching into our pockets for quarters and flashing back to the ‘80s with this amazing Pac-Man costume:

As for our favorite post from our own social media updates, our thoughts of Halloween led us to trick-or-treating and yummy treats:

So, there you have it. A quick look at a few of last week’s most interesting Halloween social media posts. We hope you enjoyed this week’s Social Rewind and we’d love it if you shared other interesting blog posts with us. See you next week! Thanks for reading!


If there's topic you'd like to see The Q Source Resource write about please let us know. We'd also appreciate if you share our blog posts with your friends and colleagues via the social media links below. If you have questions or comments about Q Source or The Q Source Resource please leave us a message in the comments section.

For additional Q Source news, product information, reviews, how-to articles, and special offers please subscribe to our email newsletter.