Waterproof Solder Wire Connector - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 18 Old 03-26-2020, 02:32 PM Thread Starter
DougE
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Waterproof Solder Wire Connector

Is there any experience out there with this solder wire connector? If it works it looks like a great way to make wire splices.
Update: General consensus seems to agree that these are not recommended.


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Last edited by DougE; Yesterday at 09:07 AM. Reason: Reviewed 17 comments.
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post #2 of 18 Old 03-26-2020, 03:55 PM
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No positive mechanical connection between the wires, only heat shrink and a bit of very low temp solder. I know my underhood temps get hotter than a blow dryer on a hot day of wheeling/driving and i wouldn't want the solder to remelt and cause a faulty connection. I would be hesitant to use on any higher draw circuits or anything under the hood. Maybe for a connection at the tail lights or something.
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post #3 of 18 Old 03-26-2020, 06:15 PM
oldschool74cj5
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hello
i have spliced alot of wires between automotive and aviation. i mostly like to do a solder connections for splicing a wires. especially for computer wires. if you have read any of the newer maintenance manuals especially mopar ones. there is a section in the electrical that talks about splicing. they recommend doing a solder splice covered in heat shrink. but most people dont get the connection proper before soldering. first you want to strip both wires that are going to be spliced and put a piece of shrink tubing over one of the wires. second you want to open the strands on both wires a little. third push both wires togethor so the open strands inter weave with each other. fourth you pinch and twist the strands to tighten them togethor. then you solder the connection. now you have a good strong connection that wont have alot of resistance to the circuit you repaired. then i also use the heatshrink that has the adhesive in it. when you shrink it you will see a little come out of the end and really help seal the connection.
the problem with a crimp connection is getting the correct crimper for the specific terminal. in aviation almost every terminal will have its own crimpers for that specific terminal. if you use the wrong crimper the crimp can be to loose or over crimped which is just as bad as loose crimp. over time with vibration they fail.

oldschool
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post #4 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 07:01 AM
Dryseals
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I used those for under the dash splicing where the PO had screwed up a bunch of connections and I was too lazy to butt splice. No real heat there so I felt comfortable using them there. Under the hood I use a butt splice and heat shrink.

I took a three week soldering course in the Navy back in the 70's. I learned a lot of tricks and how to's from the course. One of the tricks was wire splicing. I've seen some videos where the folks do as oldschool74cj5 mentioned, opening up the wire. The Navy was dead set against that practice and referred to it as bird caging the wire. Instead we made the connections the same way we did for a soldered terminal post. Strip back a small amount of wire long enough to create a hook with. Lightly tin the wire with solder and then with a small pair of "round nose" pliers create the loop. If any of the smaller wires bulge out of their position it was considered a bad bend. Do the same to the other end of the wire, hook the loops together and add enough solder to join them and heat shrink the cover. Its not pretty as other methods but the Navy was dead set on performance.

The idea here is that even your best solders have poor conductivity usually less than 15% if I remember correctly, its been a long time . So the idea of separating conductors was a big no no. We actually used a decade box after each joint to measure the resistance, the Navy's way of driving a point home.

Now with all that said JAN (Joint Army Navy) Mil-Spec Standards are not fond of solders splices, only in extreme circumstances as solder becomes brittle and causes a stress point in the wire (not for high vibration areas) and not to mention the reduced conductivity. They call for a proper butt splice with the proper crimpers.

These will do just about anything you need for your car and home.
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post #5 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 08:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dryseals View Post
I used those for under the dash splicing where the PO had screwed up a bunch of connections and I was too lazy to butt splice. No real heat there so I felt comfortable using them there. Under the hood I use a butt splice and heat shrink.

I took a three week soldering course in the Navy back in the 70's. I learned a lot of tricks and how to's from the course. One of the tricks was wire splicing. I've seen some videos where the folks do as oldschool74cj5 mentioned, opening up the wire. The Navy was dead set against that practice and referred to it as bird caging the wire. Instead we made the connections the same way we did for a soldered terminal post. Strip back a small amount of wire long enough to create a hook with. Lightly tin the wire with solder and then with a small pair of "round nose" pliers create the loop. If any of the smaller wires bulge out of their position it was considered a bad bend. Do the same to the other end of the wire, hook the loops together and add enough solder to join them and heat shrink the cover. Its not pretty as other methods but the Navy was dead set on performance.

The idea here is that even your best solders have poor conductivity usually less than 15% if I remember correctly, its been a long time . So the idea of separating conductors was a big no no. We actually used a decade box after each joint to measure the resistance, the Navy's way of driving a point home.

Now with all that said JAN (Joint Army Navy) Mil-Spec Standards are not fond of solders splices, only in extreme circumstances as solder becomes brittle and causes a stress point in the wire (not for high vibration areas) and not to mention the reduced conductivity. They call for a proper butt splice with the proper crimpers.

These will do just about anything you need for your car and home.
Are there any Mil-Spec equivalent connectors that you would suggest? Maybe some that have the built-in heat shrink cover (I seem to recall the AEs referring to them as environmental connectors) Id like to order a general purpose kit that would cover most requirements for automotive use, its time to step up my electrical arsenal. I am planning a 1995 4.0 harness conversion this spring and doing a Tub-Off repaint in the future. Being that its a 1985 CJ-7, Im sure Ill eventually run into wiring issues. Thanks for posting this info.

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post #6 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 11:59 AM
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Marine heat shrink from Harbor Freight is cheap and it works well. The Marine heat shrink has a glue or sealant inside to keep the connection water resistant. Regular heat shrink does not have the sealant. I almost never use regular anymore.

Get yourself a good heat gun. It works much better than an open flame. Watch where you point it, you can melt solder with some models. It is much more controllable than an open flame and does a better job.

Soldering is easy and it does a superior job. Sometime a couple of alligator clips will hold the wires together when they are in a bad position. I use an old magazine as a backer sometimes to get the job done.



I do not agree with using the grease for most applications.


Get a good quality soldering iron, some quality solder and some Harbor freight marine shrink tubing a wire stripper and you are good to do. If you use the proper electrical soler, you do not need the flux like was used in the second video. That guy means well but does not alway get it right.

I have noticed that somtimes where the insulation is removed and the connection is soldered, there can be a recess in the finished shrink tubing due to thickness. Sometime with i am dealing with thick insulation on the wires, I will use a small ring of heat shrink over the soldered connection to bring the thickness up to the level of the surrounding insulation before the final marine heat shrink is applied to make the finished connection look more professional. This makes a really nice smooth and level looking final connection.
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post #7 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 12:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DougE View Post
Is there any experience out there with this solder wire connector? If it works it looks like a great way to make wire splices.
I wouldn't trust them in the long term. It's hard to beat a good but connection with dielectric grease and heat shrink after being soldered. They might be good as temporary field pictures and a wet climate but I'd replacement soon as I got home.

Shawn
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post #8 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 12:50 PM
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Most of the wires in my CJ are so badly corrode, you won't be able to solder them and even crimping them will lead to tears later on.

When I strip off the insulation, the copper wires have already turned black. I've cut back over a foot already and found the corrosion had reached there also.

A liquid solution of some type to remove the corrosion would be good. I think I read something about salt and vinegar but that may of been the chips I ate last night.

For me it's just easier to run new wire and put the proper terminal on each end then fight with a splice. My next jeep owner will love me with all the extra wires running nowhere in my jeep. (j/k)

Whatever you do, make sure you start with clean wires.


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post #9 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 01:04 PM
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My father was an electrical engineer who work on military radios and equipment for the moon missions. He showed me a technique using a small pocket knife (I have a little old timer that I use..works great for releasing zip ties too) to scrape the stranded wires with the blade at a 90 degree angle to the wire. You spreat the strands and gently scrape until you have brite copper. This lets the solder stick when you absolutely have to repair a connection and you cannot replace the wire.

The salt and vinegar technique works too but you have to neutralize the solution or you will have even worse problems soon after. The Ham radio guys use this technique.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Strenk View Post
Most of the wires in my CJ are so badly corrode, you won't be able to solder them and even crimping them will lead to tears later on.

When I strip off the insulation, the copper wires have already turned black. I've cut back over a foot already and found the corrosion had reached there also.

A liquid solution of some type to remove the corrosion would be good. I think I read something about salt and vinegar but that may of been the chips I ate last night.

For me it's just easier to run new wire and put the proper terminal on each end then fight with a splice. My next jeep owner will love me with all the extra wires running nowhere in my jeep. (j/k)

Whatever you do, make sure you start with clean wires.
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post #10 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 01:18 PM Thread Starter
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As the OP I appreciate the responses. I'm strictly a fan of crimped connections but wanted to make sure something new and better hadn't come along.

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post #11 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 03:15 PM
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I have used tinning flux to sometimes get the blackened copper wires clean again.

I'd be leery of Salt and vinegar, but a vinegar solution would be possible. Issue there is like mentioned - you have to neutralize the acid of the vinegar before sealing or you won't have any wire left. Having salt in it would leave the salt residue, so moisture that may be left behind will eat the copper.

Salt and water itself corrodes copper wire faster than you'd believe. I've fixed wiring on semis that the wire was repaired, then a week to the day that same wire had been eaten through again by the saltwater from Ohio winters. Of course, it didn't help that the crimp connector wasn't even one with heat shrink on it.



That's another point - those crimp-ons witht he pre-installed heat shrink. They are good for under the dash, where they might get damp once in a while, but if they are out in the elements, the heat shrink is damaged when you squeeze them to crimp the wires. There's ALWAYS a hole, and unless the adhesive can fill it, it will eventually corrode.

Rick

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post #12 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 05:16 PM
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An electrician friend told me about these push in connectors https://www.idealindustries.ca/produ...n/push-in.html 600 volts AC is the max for them.

I've used them in areas where it is hard to get a crimper like under the dash. They work well for splitting a line for daisy chaining wiring gauges or lights. Where I felt I needed waterproofed connections I used a thinner clear RTV adhesive. You can't pull 14 out gauge and larger wire, but can pull out 16 gauge wire with some effort. On 16 gauge wire I use a short wire tie to cinch the wires together to take the pressure off the connector. That may be overkill. 18 gauge wire is too small.

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post #13 of 18 Old 03-27-2020, 05:24 PM
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I have a very good friend who was in the electronics repair business for years. I trust most of what he say and he was the one that pointed me in the direction of salt and vinegar and the ham radio community. It is suppose to work well. The problem I have is anytime you wet a stranded wire you have capillary action where liquid is sucked up the wire deep into the insulation. I can not see how you could get the salt and vinegar out and all neutralized which is why I have never tried it. I just use the scraping method when I have to. I never use butt splices anymore. I have gotten so good at soldering and shrink wrapping the connections and the spice is smaller and more flexible there is no reason for me to use an inferior repair method. I have removed 95% of the butt splices out of my Jeep and he got rid of my fuel injection problems. The only reason I would use a butt splice was for a temporary field repair or if I had to make a living repairing stuff where a couple of extra minutes add up to money made.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cutlass327 View Post
I have used tinning flux to sometimes get the blackened copper wires clean again.

I'd be leery of Salt and vinegar, but a vinegar solution would be possible. Issue there is like mentioned - you have to neutralize the acid of the vinegar before sealing or you won't have any wire left. Having salt in it would leave the salt residue, so moisture that may be left behind will eat the copper.

Salt and water itself corrodes copper wire faster than you'd believe. I've fixed wiring on semis that the wire was repaired, then a week to the day that same wire had been eaten through again by the saltwater from Ohio winters. Of course, it didn't help that the crimp connector wasn't even one with heat shrink on it.



That's another point - those crimp-ons witht he pre-installed heat shrink. They are good for under the dash, where they might get damp once in a while, but if they are out in the elements, the heat shrink is damaged when you squeeze them to crimp the wires. There's ALWAYS a hole, and unless the adhesive can fill it, it will eventually corrode.
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post #14 of 18 Old 03-28-2020, 07:23 AM
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Ooooo thats some ugly solder joints there Stonetower. Remember the purpose of solder is not a conductor, its to hold the pieces together and keep the copper from corroding. Here is something that might be of interest to some. Also google the Western Union splice. And here is another set of NASA rules, notice in all instances the integrity of the wire group is not compromised. Or here, check out section 19.12 for crimping butt connectors.
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post #15 of 18 Old 03-28-2020, 08:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cutlass327 View Post
I have used tinning flux to sometimes get the blackened copper wires clean again.
I wouldn't use any "acid based" tinning flux. There's a reason we use rosin core solder instead of acid core solder for electrical work. The electrons flowing through the wire will make the acid creep under the insolation and actually corrode worse. Think about whatyour battery cables look like after 10 years.
Shawn

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