Wire Connections..Solder or Crimp.

Submitted: Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 11:52
ThreadID: 67550 Views:7241 Replies:10 FollowUps:20
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Just a quick question to all the sparkies out there...fitting a dual battery system at the moment..as well as power from vehicle mounted aux battery to caravan fridge/lights. Aux battery is in back of ute canopy. Should I solder or crimp all the cable ends onto connectors and anderson plugs, or doesn't it matter.

Fred.
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Reply By: Shaker - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 12:23

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 12:23
This is an age old debate, our marine electronics technicians say crimping, but only if you have the correct crimping tools.
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Follow Up By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 12:38

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 12:38
Shaker , correct because soldering leaves a solid area where the cable will eventually fatigue if not supported past that area.. Michael.
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Follow Up By: Member - Kiwi Kia - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 13:47

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 13:47
I second that, crimp with the right tool.

.
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Follow Up By: Member - Fred G NSW - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:19

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:19
Mostly what I was thinking fellas...not too many soldered connections in any vehicle that I can recall.

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Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 17:22

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 17:22
Not So!

Soldered connections are not a problem with Anderson Connectors as the cable diameter is (or should be) reasonably large.

Anderson Power recommend both crimp or soldered connections.
Depending on the diameter of the cable you are using, you can even increase the cable diameter at the point of joining into the connector by wrapping with copper wire prior to soldering.

Recommended Soldering Techniques (From Anderson Power)
Use rosin flux solder only. Wrap cable strands. Melt solder into well, heat and insert stripped cable. Continue heating well until solder flows into wire, being careful not to over flow onto contact surface. Do not solder-dip contacts.



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Follow Up By: Member - Fred G NSW - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 17:40

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 17:40
Sandman, thanks for that info. I'll be crimping the connectors and soldering the Anderson Connectors as you and others suggest.

Fred.
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Follow Up By: Member - Zig (WA) - Monday, Apr 06, 2009 at 00:50

Monday, Apr 06, 2009 at 00:50
As a marine electronics technician for many long years I crimp all my conections, with the right tools.
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Reply By: trainslux - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 13:50

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 13:50
If you solder correctly, you wont have issues with the solder going too far into the cable, and causing fatige spots as earlier mentioned.

If your soldering anderson plug ends, or batt lugs.
here is a quick guide.

I have drilled a hole in some scrap wood to take the upturned plug/ lug.

With a small butane torch, ie 10 buck one that you fill with lighter gas from the bottle. Heat the end of the lug till you can 3/4 or more fill it with solder.
Then dip the end of your cable that you have already trimed to size, and removed the required amount of insulation off, and have already slid on some shrink wrap of your choice, into the solder for a half second, then just push it down into the lug till its home.

Then quickly apply a wet towel to the lug so it cools, and thus solder is not wicked further up the cable than it needs.

Let dry, and fit shrink wrap, and admire your professional job.

Trains


AnswerID: 358183

Follow Up By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 14:14

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 14:14
A good suggestion but personally I prefer to tin the wire before poking it into the socket It grips better if you do,



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Follow Up By: Member - Fred G NSW - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:21

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:21
Thanks for the good tips Trains and Graham.
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Follow Up By: trainslux - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 21:26

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 21:26
I found that if you tin the end of the wire, the solder ends up further along the wire than I wanted due to heat first applied to the wire to apply the solder.

The way I do it now prevents that. But by dipping the end in just for a second, allows for that initial tinning to occour, but not overheating the wire, and thus the solder wicking along further than is required.



Cheers

T
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Follow Up By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Monday, Apr 06, 2009 at 11:46

Monday, Apr 06, 2009 at 11:46
I also prefer to tin the wire first.

The issue you can have with not tinning is that you plunge a cold piece of copper cable into the molten solder and it immediately cools the solder down.

The risk of creating a "dry" solder joint is heightened dramatically as the solder is only adhereing to the outer surface of the copper strands; it will NOT have made it's way throughout the entire copper cable within the joint.

Just my experience.....
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Reply By: SPRINT-GTO - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 15:08

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 15:08
What guage wire are you using to connect the two batteries??
AnswerID: 358191

Follow Up By: Member - Fred G NSW - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:47

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:47
I'm using all ARB sidewinder components,including the isolator, supplied by a valued contributer to this site, and the cable is their new Solar cable/60amp, twin sheathed and 6mm2 each core. Apparently has only 0.05V drop over 6 mtrs.
I was worried about distorting the Anderson Plugs with crimping, prior to fitting them into the housings.
Thanks for you advice all.
Fred.
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Follow Up By: Member - Fred G NSW - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:56

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:56
This is the cable.This is the Cable I am using
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Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Thoughtfully- Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 22:44

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 22:44
Fred the correct crimper will do a better job on the Anderson plugs than solder. An auto leccie should be able to help you out with little or no charge
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Reply By: Member - Noel K (NT) - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 15:23

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 15:23
G'day Fred,
With connectors I cut the insulation back so the copper protrudes past the crimp a little then crimp and solder the protruding copper to the connector. I also always use conduit and slide some heat shrink back over the insulation on the connector and conduit then heat untill tidy, total protection.
AnswerID: 358193

Follow Up By: Member - Fred G NSW - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:32

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 16:32
Thanks Noel..I like things to look neat.
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Reply By: Ozboc - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 17:58

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 17:58
both can create a "dry joint" but i feel crimped has a higher level of failing as corrosion can make its way between the cable core and the lugs - when its soldered -- it becomes one piece where corrosion can not enter

Boc

AnswerID: 358207

Reply By: kcandco - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 19:32

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 19:32
I vote for solder. In 30 years I have never had a soldered connection fail but have seen a few problems with corrosion in crimped connections.

regards Kc
AnswerID: 358224

Follow Up By: Member - Kiwi Kia - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 20:29

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 20:29
Solder joints are not legal in 240 volt and above - every wondered why ?

CRIMP !

.
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Follow Up By: Hairy (NT) - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 20:48

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 20:48
Yeah mate....Im with you. The only conections I have had fail are crimped ones.
While saying that....thats because of the tools and consumables available to an amature isnt the same as the tradies might use????

Im not sure if compareing 240 to 12 volt is relevant? The crimpers we used to use to conect up big bore pumps exerted TONNES not kilos.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: obee1212 - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 20:57

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 20:57
I am waiting for the answer why.

Owen
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Follow Up By: Tony MD - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 21:00

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 21:00
Not exactly true.
Soldering is still permissible but only on lugs that are designed for soldering, of which there aren't (m)any! It is still possible to wrap & solder a cable together so long as the insulation qualities are restored - heat shrink not tape.
Soldering of crimp connections is not compliant due to potential shrinkage at the joint.
Crimp the connections using the correct lugs & crimping tools.
You may also want to use cable jointing compound - available from Utilux, on the crimp connections.
Soldered connections of flexible cables to fixed terminals WILL fail unless the cable is fully supported and the joint is not subject to mechanical stress.
Cheers Tony - Registered Electrical Contractor
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Reply By: Member - Mark E (VIC) - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 21:02

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 21:02
Ok OK I do both....... Crimp first....then solder....it MUST be twice as good as only doing one of them, surely! ;-)

Cheers,

Mark
AnswerID: 358245

Follow Up By: Tony MD - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 21:09

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 21:09
Definitely not!
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Reply By: SPRINT-GTO - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 22:07

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 22:07
Fred G
I am not a sparky and have no training in this area but the cable you are intending to use looks like 6mm auto cable??
6mm cable has a 4.59mm conductor area only.
I would have thought when doing your wiring you would use 6mm B&S (13.5mm conductor area)cable which has far less resistance.
I would suggest the 6mm B&S between the 2 batteries and then the lighter 6mm double cored wire to fridge /lights etc.
Is this what you are intending??
Goodluck.
AnswerID: 358253

Follow Up By: Member - Fred G NSW - Monday, Apr 06, 2009 at 09:50

Monday, Apr 06, 2009 at 09:50
Yes mate, that's what I'm doing.

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Reply By: Gronk - Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 23:03

Sunday, Apr 05, 2009 at 23:03
If you are joining cable into an Anderson plug ( which from memory is 16mm lugs )...then the cable needs to be 16mm as well..

And the crimper should be a hydraulic crimper ( not the crimper that pushes a dent in one side )

And if you can't do it properly as above.......then solder it..
AnswerID: 358264

Reply By: beccsptyltd - Monday, Apr 06, 2009 at 05:02

Monday, Apr 06, 2009 at 05:02
ok i have really only just skimmed over this topic but it looks like your wanting to a fit a dual battery system to your vehicle. Why are you only using 6mm?

You need to look into what size alternator you have fitted to your vehicle to specify what size cable that you use. ie My cruiser has a 140A alternator so i would be installing wiring to suit that. So youd be looking at about minimum 2 guage. Of which in that size you would DREAM of soldering! You need WAY to much heat for too long to actually get a 'SOLID' solder connection to get all the way into all the strands of the wire itself. For solder connections like this your talking about using a blow torch and a solder lead stick for the task.

As a sparky i would suggest crimping, as its fatigue free.

As for people making corrosion comments about crimping, have you thought about the rest of the cable? not just the connection? The cable inside the sheith is going to corrode just as fast if not faster than the point of connection as moisture will be held.

So im summary, i would use a bigger cable than you are suggestesting and purely crimp. I have never had a crimp fail in 10 years. I have seen lots of solder joints on large cables fail due to too much applied heat for too long on thicker cables.

JB
AnswerID: 358269

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