Wiring How To – Butt Connectors Video
Wiring How To Details
In our previous video on the Portasol 125 Solder Kit we showed how this butane-powered soldering iron is very convenient for small jobs. There are many wiring how-to videos out there, including one we did just last year Wiring How To Terminate Wires 101. While we typically recommend soldering wires whenever possible, there are times when using a butt-connector makes the most sense. All butt connectors aren’t the same; hence, don’t just buy the cheapest connectors and start crimping.
Our thoughts are that insulated butt connectors have a better chance of failing than non-insulated terminals. We like to use non-insulated connectors and then follow up with a good marine heat shrink with adhesive included. This type of connection keeps the connection sealed, mitigating the chance of moisture entering and creating corrosion. You can also use a small screwdriver or punch to remove the non-insulated connector from the vinyl/plastic insulation sheath.
It doesn’t matter how good your connectors are if your crimpers don’t do the job. Even some of the best crimpers may not do a great job with some connections. During our video filming, we had several connection failures from different crimpers. Specifically, using the smallest non-insulated butt-connectors, the crimpers would not provide a deep enough protrusion to capture the wire fully. This weak connection allowed the wires to separate from the terminal. This is not something you want to happen after you spend hours fixing a wiring harness.
Bottom line is that you need to ensure that your connection, whether soldered or crimped, is solid. The connection not only needs to retain the wire, but it also needs to flow the proper amount of current without increased resistance from loose connections. Use a good heat shrink that shrinks enough to encapsulate the wiring insulation fully and adhesive (marine style) is recommended.