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Old 22-01-2011, 15:26   #1
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Connecting Really Small Wires

How do I connect a 26 awg wire to a proper size wire (e.g. 16 awg)?
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Old 22-01-2011, 15:34   #2
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Put both wires into the same end of an insulated butt crimp fitting. Stick a glob of silicone in the other end of the fitting to prevent corrosion.

Probably not ABYC compliant.
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Old 22-01-2011, 15:41   #3
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strip the smaller wire for twice the normal length and double it up inside the connector
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Old 22-01-2011, 16:26   #4
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Solder and heat-shrink
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Old 22-01-2011, 16:29   #5
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26ga wire is the proper size for many applications, particularly NMEA data. Surprisingly enough some elctronics manufacturers know that, and use this size on their products. This in spite of the fact that everyone knows bigger is better.
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Old 22-01-2011, 16:48   #6
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I use end connectors. Strip a length and wrap the small wire around the larger wire, put it in the end connector and crimp it in the 18-22 setting. BTW, if you are just connecting multiple 26 gauge you can use telephone wire connectors and crimpers.
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Old 22-01-2011, 17:07   #7
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these are great and have the silicone already to squeeze out.
Connector, Red, 3 Ports, 26-19AWG, PK 100 - Insulation Displacement Connectors - Wire Connectors - Electrical : Grainger Industrial Supply
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Old 22-01-2011, 17:21   #8
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Solder and heat-shrink
+1, If you know its a permanant attachment, this cannot be bettered.
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Old 22-01-2011, 17:24   #9
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Solder and heat-shrink
Google "western union splice"

Solder and heat-shrink it....or tape it, goop it, or what-ever-it.
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Old 22-01-2011, 17:38   #10
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Uh--- this big question was never asked. What is the application?

BTW- Doubling up the wire is a bad idea if the conductor is solid... it will likely break. Okay if stranded, but still not ideal.

The 3M Silicone impregnated in-line butt splices are ONLY good for 24-26 gauge conductors. We use them all over the audio and telephone side of the plant, but for transitioning to 16 Gauge, I think that I would recommend a solid plastic or bakelite barrier strip, especially if you're managing multiple conductors. I'm using one for my NMEA Data breakout and distribution. High quality spade fork crimps and a Panduit crimping tool can't be beat. Then coat the whole assembly with clear silicone grease, and then install a plastic splash guard over the barrier strip.

Again, the location of the splice and the application are the unknown variable. Your best judgment needs to be applied from there.

He's not a friend of mine (though I wish he was), but Nigel Calder has written a number of phenomenal books for sailors on this topic, such as The Boat Owners Mechanical and Electrical Manual. There should be a copy in everyone's ships board library. Hit up Amazon's used book listing.

Good Luck!


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Old 22-01-2011, 17:45   #11
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right missed the 16 gauge transition
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Old 22-01-2011, 18:23   #12
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the op asked to splice to a 16ga wire.. this only goes up to 19
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Old 22-01-2011, 18:26   #13
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op.. you kinda indiacate that the PROPER size is 16ga, but you want to connect a smaller wire to it.. so does that mean the smaller wire is incorrect?

like others asked.. what is the purpose..

also there are many ways. the make a connectors called wing nuts, or wire nuts.. or you can use butt end connectors or other similar connectors.. some are weather proof, or water proof, but not too many are tryuly water proof...

the suggestion to use silicone is good..

you can also use wire terminal, or termnal blocks... these are handy if you are going to re splice or add other wires to the conneciton...

gl
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Old 22-01-2011, 18:27   #14
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yep just said oops missed the 16 gauge thing but for same wire connecting there great
dont use these for connecting to 16 ga wire it wont work.
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Old 22-01-2011, 18:58   #15
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Wire nuts have no (NO) place on a boat and soldering wires that small is just asking for trouble. Stick to the crimp fasteners and glue sealed heat shrink.
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