I don't know that they NEED to. I think everyone could benefit from being able to solder though, even people who aren't in the engineering world. Well, except for wizards they can just do whatever they want.
I'm curious. Hobby electronics has exploded over the last few years. Has any of that been connected up with professional engineering? Like, do engineers-by-day become hobbyists after hours? If so, has that necessitated an increase in soldering skills?
Many years ago, in a galaxy, pretty much right here, I'd expect to fix just about any electronic device of mine that failed. Somewhere along the years, component level repair became too expensive, too complex and in general, impractical.
However, along with the recent hobby re-revolution, that's been changing. In the last year, I've successfully performed component level repair on an LCD monitor, a gaming mouse, a digital camera and a few other similarly complex items. A decade ago, that would have been unthinkable.
Has anyone else found home electronics repair viable again?
Caleb - looking at engineers like Jason Kridner (Ti Beaglebone camer and other projects) and Jeff Keyzer (Geiger counter, GHz Amps & such), I'd have to agree with you that there are engineers who still enjoy creating when outside of the corporate walls.
part of why some of them are repairable for me is that there are great tutorials out there. I've replaced capacitors on a couple TVs that I never would have found on my own, but they were documented issues.
Why do you say it is becoming viable again? What is it about the failures of these recent devices that left you able to diagnose/repair them, versus the failures of devices a decade ago that you couldn't/didn't?
Hi Duane: I agree I have started to repair consumer products again. There is so much more information available on the net now, such as tear downs and repair videos.
My daughters Canon Ixius camera had a problem with it's zoom switch, a similar wreck from e-bay produced the part, no soldering, but I did need the other skill I have, which is watch repair, try taking a ladies cocktail dress watch apart, to see how small they got mechanical watches.
I think just like well priced mechanical watches much consumer electronics have become very modular, so breaking down and reassembly has become easier.
That is apart from getting a seam welded case open without cosmetic damage, anyone got a tip for this?