Wire splice connectors and crimpers
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    coaltrain's Avatar
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    Wire splice connectors and crimpers

    I spent my entire life with a cheap wire crimp connector set along with the cheap stripper/crimper. After my project yesterday I have decided to get some decent tools.

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    Firstly is a decent crimper. My hands don't work so well anymore and need something that helps make it easier. Also hate hate hate these cheap crimpers where you have to get the connecter into the handle end of the hinge to crimp.

    In my search I found these ratcheting crimpers - the ratchetting part tweaks my interest to help with not having much power in my hands.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...KIKX0DER&psc=1

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    After reading a bunch of reviews a lot of people recommend these crimpers. Big plus is you use the end of the tool - but no ratcheting mechanism. But the 10" long handles would really help.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...V6SZGM65&psc=1

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    Then the next issue is stripping the wire. These look like the ticket for me also.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...KIKX0DER&psc=1

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    These tools represent a pretty good investment for me. They are not something I use every day but when I do need them I want to have something decent. That along with some decent butt connectors with heat shrink ends and I would be set for the rest of my life.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...9RB7NG5N&psc=1

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    Opinions or thoughts?
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    jdmich's Avatar
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    Made the investment long time ago. All I use is the heat shrink connectors, terminals, spades, eyes etc. I also bought a nice tool box with individual pull out trays and have all my connectors organized by size etc.. Keep small butane torch in it also to shrink connectors, shrink tubing along with dielectric grease, tape, testers etc.
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    Captain Hook Kennyd's Avatar
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    I have both the Klien and Channellock versions of the crimpers you linked, and the very strippers you linked as well. I can recommend both. My experience with ratchet crimpers is dismal when used with a variety of connectors, they have to be perfectly spec'd for a proper crimp-I'd would avoid them.

    Also, only get get connectors like the Thomas & Betts ones, stay far away form the elcheapo ones.
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    Did the same thing, but did it when radio shack was going out of business last year. I walk out with close to 900 worth of stuff for 45 dollars. It was the first day of their 85% off clearance. I probably spent 1.5 hours going through every parts drawer.

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    Keeper of the GTT Cookies dieselshadow's Avatar
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    I would agree wholeheartedly with Ken here. Do not get the ratchet style. They’re perfect when you have the right die and the correct crimp connectors. Other than that they will under/over crimp any other others leaving a much less desirable connection.

    Heat shrink connectors are the only way to go. T&B are top of the line and worth the dollars. I refuse to use regular crimp connectors as they are always a compromise and add a layer of problems down the road when they corrode internally or let loose. Heat shrink style won’t do either.
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    I was in the same boat. I alos went with the vise grip crimpers and the same wire stripper. I also got the same heat shrink connectors and I bought rolls of shrink tubing. I use the heat shrink connectors the let it cool then put shrink tubing over the whole connector.
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    Soldering is always preferred for splices, especially with anything that can get wet. You can get flooded heat shrink which will render a splice waterproof after shrinking.

    I don't find the ratcheting crimp tools that much of an advantage with putting spade connectors and the like on. I have one that is used for putting coax connectors on, but that's not tractor work! While they make a professional crimp, you may need a specific die set for each size connector/wire combination. Unless you're doing high volume professional work, I don't see how that is worth the expense.

    The diagonal cutters with the crimp die (2nd photo) are designed for putting the green bonding sleeves on ground wires in electrical work. They will pierce the plastic sleeve on a crimp on connector.

    Al
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    Senior GTT Super Slacker Gizmo2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coaltrain View Post
    After reading a bunch of reviews a lot of people recommend these crimpers. Big plus is you use the end of the tool - but no ratcheting mechanism. But the 10" long handles would really help.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...V6SZGM65&psc=1

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I have a pair similar to these, best I've ever found and I've crimped thousands and thousands of crimps. I think the pair I have are Klein.
    Keith

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    Ideal and Klein are about the best in the industry in my opinion. I have some of those automatic strippers, but never use them. The jaws/cutting blades seem to get out of alignment after being tossed around in the toolbox. For me it's quicker to use the regular wire strippers. I personally don't like the all-in-one tools if I'm doing a lot of terminations.
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    I use something like this for stripping.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GFXD22E..._-JNRAbCX4VCDF

    Nice and small and let me cut the insulation back the length I want. The auto kind are nice if you have room to work and are doing the same connector multiple times since you can dial in the cut length for consistency.


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