Solder Splices

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Old 02-09-09, 03:40 PM
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Solder Splices

Hi,

I need to butt splice two pairs of 18 gauge electrical wire. We have to put a different connector on a power supply for some computer equipment that we have.

Does anyone have any recommendations on which solder splices to use? Looks like there a several to choose from, so I thought I'd check to see which brand was recommended.

Thanks
 
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Old 02-09-09, 04:32 PM
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Crimp type butt splices(red) work just fine.
 
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Old 02-09-09, 04:42 PM
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To me a solder splice is when you mechanically join two wires together then apply solder, in this case rosin core. Never really seen a device to do that. Are you actually talking about things like butt (crimp) connectors? They are not soldered.

When making a splice I prefer to just twist and solder. I have had too many but connectors pull loose. Also you can get a neater appearance with soldering. Slip on a couple of pieces of heat shrink tubing, one slightly longer then the other before connecting. When finished soldering slip and shrink the first then the second. If you want a bit more insulation use a layer or two of tape first. With zip cord you can use a piece over the whole thing to cover the individual splices.. Can look almost factory.
 
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Old 02-09-09, 05:14 PM
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WiFiGuy, I'm wondering if you meant solderless splices?

Butt splices, if crimped properly, are a close second in strength to solder. The key is to use the proper size butt connectors for the wire gauge. Never tin the wires with solder before using a butt splice (or any compression connector).

We use them all the time for the same purpose on wall warts: Got the right power & voltage, but the connector is wrong. Make sure you check polarity! Not all power supplies use the same wire ID. Sometimes +VDC is striped, and sometimes it's the other way around.

A couple of addition's to Ray's post above: Use a small file to take off any sharp edges of solder on the joint. Offset the splices so they aren't right next to each other. This prevents the solder from cutting the shrink-tubing and causing a short, and your splice will be close to the same diameter of the original wires.
 
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Old 02-09-09, 05:30 PM
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here ya go

Solderseal Wire Harness Connectors

I've used similar. Use a heat gun for best temp control on the melting process, not a flame. Don't use these for grounding type applications, since a real fire will tend to allow unintentional dissassembly.
 
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Old 02-09-09, 06:36 PM
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Thanks Rick for adding the two important steps I left out.
A couple of addition's to Ray's post above: Use a small file to take off any sharp edges of solder on the joint. Offset the splices so they aren't right next to each other. This prevents the solder from cutting the shrink-tubing and causing a short, and your splice will be close to the same diameter of the original wires.
 
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Old 02-10-09, 07:20 AM
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Thanks telecom....

Originally Posted by telecom guy View Post
Solderseal Wire Harness Connectors

I've used similar. Use a heat gun for best temp control on the melting process, not a flame. Don't use these for grounding type applications, since a real fire will tend to allow unintentional dissassembly.
These splices are the ones I asked about. There are several manufucacturers making similar products that all appear to use the same concept. Thanks for the tip re the heat gun vs. butane torch. Most of the "kits" I saw for sale came with a small butane torch.

Do you have a recommendation re a particular type heat gun for these?

Also, thanks to all who replied about the traditional splices. Although I've crimped butt splices before, I've had them pull out on occaison. I know that I could do something like a "Wester Union" solder splice with heat shrink over top, but these Solderseal type splices appear to acheive the same result with less work.
 
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Old 02-10-09, 10:23 AM
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The best heat gun for solder sleeves would probably be the Raychem Superheater, but it's expensive and requires a supply of compressed air. If you're not running an assembly line, a $10 Harbor Fright heat gun with a reducer should work just fine. For use in the field, there's a hot air tip available for the butane-powered Portasol soldering iron.
 
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Old 02-10-09, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by WiFiGuy View Post
Do you have a recommendation re a particular type heat gun for these?
I use this one, with 650 deg heater: Master-MiteŽ Heat Gun

It will handle heat shrink on 2 AWG wire as well as the thermo solder connectors on smaller stuff..
 
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