While you need to choose the correct size tip for your project, it is also important to look at the shape of the tip. There are plenty of types of tips to look for, and it can be daunting to try to choose. Just like with tip size, the most important factor is making sure your tip will fit between the components on your board. After you ensure your tip will fit then you can look for the most efficient tip for your job.
Chisel tips are one of the most common types available. For most soldering jobs a chisel tip will work the best, giving you a tapered edge that can fit between most components with a flat tip that facilitates heat transfer.
Shaped in a cone, these tips are perfect if your project has hard to reach places that need soldering. These tips should be used only when needed to get into small areas, as they do not have as much contact area with the component as tips with wider heads. This can lead to difficulty getting the component to heat up, making your project take longer.
Pyramid tips are also great for small components in enclosed spaces. They also have the benefit of a flat side, making heat transfer happen faster and easier. If you are restricted in space but have enough room for a pyramid tip it can be a good alternative to a conical tip to make your project a bit easier.
Bevel tips are great if you want the best of both worlds from chisel and conical tips. A bevel tip is made with one flat edge and one round edge on the tip, so you can use whichever your project needs. One thing to keep in mind when getting a bevel tip, make sure both sides are the correct size for your project. Having the round and flat parts together can save money through buying less tips, but that does not work if you need two different sizes.
Larger and wider than most, blade tips are great for rework applications. With soldering braid and a blade tip you can easily remove solder from multiple components at once. Blade tips can also be used for pad leveling applications.
There is a wide range of specialty tips that can be used for specific situations. Whether you need a bent tip to get around other parts, or a slotted tip to sit on your board perfectly, you can find the exact tip for your needs, even if the standard tips do not fit your project.