Hot-Air Rework Station 110V to 230V

A project to convert the Sparkfun 303D Hot-Air rework station from 110V to 230V.

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I have been looking to purchase a hot-air rework station for some time and when Sparkfun had their AT850 variant on sale i could not resist any longer. Since i live in Sweden i calculated shipping, import handling fees and taxes to make sure that the price still was lower then buying an equivalent station from Europe.

However i forgot one thing, USA uses 110V...

Because of expensive shipping and non-refundable import handling fees there was no point in sending it back to Sparkfun for a refund. Therefore i decided to try converting it to 230V.

  • Air pump

    Andreas Dahlberg06/01/2020 at 06:55 0 comments

    At first i thought everything was done but after a closer look on the PCB and the pump i noticed that the pump also was powered by mains voltage. 

    I started to look for a replacement pump but either they was very expensive or from an unreliable source. So the only option left was to convert the existing pump.

    The pump is an electromechanical diaphragm pump so i was hoping to be able to replace or rewire the electromagnet inside.

    After opening up the pump i saw that it had two coils connected in parallell so i rewired them in series to get the correct voltage drop for 230V. 


    The device is built for a mains frequency of 60 Hz and i will run it on 50 Hz. I guess this will limit the max airflow but i don't think that will be an issue.

  • Heating element

    Andreas Dahlberg05/29/2020 at 13:28 0 comments

    The heating element runs on mains voltage so i had to find a replacement element. As mentioned before a different version of the AT850 is sold in Europe so it was possible to buy the heating element as a spare part from Farnell.

    Old and new heating element side by side.

    Heating elements

    After opening up the handle it was simple to just replace the heating element.

  • Transformer

    Andreas Dahlberg05/29/2020 at 13:00 0 comments

    The next step was to check if i could use the existing transformer or if i needed to buy a new one. 

    The transformer had two primary windings rated for 115V connected in parallell, so all i had to do was to connected them in series to get a voltage drop of 230V instead of 115V.

    The PCB had the possibility to do this by just moving a connector!

  • Investigation

    Andreas Dahlberg01/27/2018 at 12:47 0 comments

    Since i knew that a similar unit was sold in Europe i was hoping that the they shared the same PCB. After opening up the rework station and taking out the PCB i could confirm this. The PCB can handle both 110V and 230(220)V. This could actually work out :)

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Sven Seitola wrote 11/10/2021 at 13:55 point

I created my account just to thank you.

I received my 303D today and was baffled to see it is a 110V device. I didn't even consider the possibility of a pure 110V device in a European distributor shop, but here I am. The device gets me good value for the Euro, so I think I will keep it and change it to 230V. Thank you so much for the project!

  Are you sure? yes | no

Sven Seitola wrote 01/18/2022 at 15:19 point

It took me the desperate need of a hot-air station to actually rework it. Here's a few comments that might help:

Have a few cable ties ready to replace those that you need to cut.

Have a sharp knife available to open the heat application handle. Its halves are additionally soft-glued and don't open just by removing the screws. Be aware that there are cables inside the handle. Pull down the hose from the handle first.

The lid of the pump is soft-glued as well. It takes a slot screwdriver or knife to lift up the pump lid.

Have thin screwdrivers available for that one front PCB screw which is hard to reach without removing the supply trafo.

Be aware that the supply connector which needs to be moved to the 220V position also needs to be rotated, which is indicated by the PCB print.

The installed fuse is not appropriate for operation at 230V . Use a 3A fuse (20x5 mm) instead.

The resistance of my old heat element is 22R. The resistance of the new heat element is 86R. Might help when you mix them up :-)

  Are you sure? yes | no

Michael Grand wrote 10/01/2020 at 12:47 point

Hi, can somebody confirm that the detailed modifications are working? Is the hot air station working flawlessly? Thanks in advance!

  Are you sure? yes | no

Andreas Dahlberg wrote 03/21/2021 at 22:36 point

I have used the modified hot air station for some time and have not encountered any issues yet,

  Are you sure? yes | no

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