The stupid 4 dollar soldering iron won't get hot enough to melt the solder. I paid a dollar for the iron and 3 bucks for shipping. No point going around the hassle of returning it either.
RadioShack came to the rescue. I've never been a RadioShack fan but this was the second time it proved to be very useful.
A couple of months back, the Microwave went kaput. After opening it out and checking some of the circuits, it seemed that the internal fuse might have blown. I wasn't sure but it was worth replacing before spending a hundred bucks on a service call to a repairman. Checked online, the fuse was at least 10 - 15 bucks shipped. Tried my luck at RadioShack - 3 for $2!!. Yaaay....replace...see if it works...rinse...repeat 3 times. It worked on the first try. The microwave has been working fine ever since. Hundred bucks saved - thank you RadioShack!
Fast Forward to yesterday. Went to RadioShack, found a decent 30W soldering iron + starter kit (some solder wire, stand, etc.) for 8 bucks! Made me kick myself for wasting time and money ordering online before checking at RadioShack (2 mins from my house)
The project still is facing hurdles. I was able to easily remove the bad caps with the RadioShack iron....but the solder in the holes won't come out. My noobiness is shining very bright. I've already tried a couple of times - spend around 2 hours an successfully cleared out enough holes to put in half a capacitor.
Good news? No burns yet - no fingers burnt, no table burned, no house on fire either.
If it doesn't work by this weekend, I'm giving up (would be a BIG blow to my ego if I do give up). Let's see....