The Weller Pyropen is one of the best portable soldering irons out there. I like them because I get almost an hour and half of heat, and I can move around — no cords. So, while I have an electric soldering station, I almost exclusively end up using this Weller, even when I’m near the station. I just find it easier. So, you switch it on, it lights the butane up, and it makes this cool high-pitched scream. And when it glows red, it's very hot. It heats up faster than an electric; it will reach full heat in about 30 seconds. I love these things.
Note: According to a spokesman at the manufacturer, the Weller Portasol (PS100), previously reviewed on Cool Tools here, and the Weller Pyropen are nearly identical products. The Portasol is about half the price and has a slightly hotter max temperature and is made in Japan. The Pyropen is currently made in Ireland. Both are considered the same high professional quality. --KK
Rose Eveleth is a journalist who covers how humans tangle with science and technology. She’s the host and producer of Flash Forward, a podcast about the future, and has covered everything from fake tumbleweed farms to sexist prosthetics. Kevin Kelly and I interviewed Rose about her favorite tools on the Cool Tools podcast. Subscribe to […]
Rick Lax created the TV show “Wizard Wars” and has written several books on deception. He’s a non-practicing lawyer, a former MENSA member, and now spends his time creating tricks for other magicians and for Penguin Magic, the biggest magic retailer in the world. Subscribe to the Cool Tools Show on iTunes | RSS | Transcript | Download MP3 | See all the […]
In the latest episode of the Cool Tools Show podcast, Kevin Kelly and I interviewed Andrew Leonard about some of his favorite tools.
Almost everyone has their smartphone in a case of one kind or another. Beyond simple protection, finding a case that can charge your phone on its own, but doesn’t feel like it’s also adding a couple pounds to the phone’s weight is the tricky part. Billed as the world’s thinnest battery case, the ThinCharge iPhone […]
You never know when new projects, ideas or opportunities can drop into your lap at a moment’s notice. That may require you to learn a new programming language like Python. Or maybe you need a primer on 3D game development. Or you might realize you could use a serious brush-up on iOS mobile creation.Point is, […]
Isn’t it about time to stretch what your Mac can do? I mean, you’ve got plenty of great programs now…but don’t you think you could use some new tools to get your creative, analytical and organizational juices really flowing? It’s spring, so we cleaned up a whole bunch of super-cool apps lying around and packaged […]