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I wanted to add an important detail to my post below. The Weller WLC100 is much cheaper than the wes51 because the wlc has a watt control, not a temperature control like the wes51. This is where the big difference in price and performance comes from. The correct wattage changes as you are soldering; when you set the iron down you need very little, then when you wet a giant 12awg splice you will need near max watts. So controlling wattage does little to help... you either will burn up tips or misheat your joints. Stations with proper temp control are the way to go; they can drop watts while the iron is on the stand, then ramp the watts up quickly the split second your tip cools from wetting a joint. So suffice it to say you should limit your search to only models with temperature control.

Among those, you can take my post below as support for the weller wes temp control system. It's been around for decades and was designed for industrial use, so you know it's going to work better than the cheap ones. When you pick up a wes51 (or wed51) you can feel the weight; it's packed with lots of goodness and you're getting what you pay for. Even the feel of the pen in your hand, the sturdiness of the cord and connectors, all of it feels industrial. Sure there's the name, weller, but you know that name doesn't matter to the hoardes of industry pros buy them by the boatload... which is why they are at a reasonable price point for consumers to jump on board.