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Old 13-08-2014, 05:58   #46
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Originally Posted by Wotname View Post
. . . .

This matches my experience of finding corroded terminals (both solder and crimp) in old marine wiring.
I don't think any kind of wiring, no matter how well done, will last forever in the marine environment. If you get 20 years out of it, I think you've done really well.

The point is not to make it last forever, which is unrealistic, but to prevent premature failure.

My experience, for whatever it may be worth, is that soldered connections on boats fail very quickly. Good crimps last for a long time (if not forever). Just one data point: All the original wiring on my boat is in excellent shape after 13 years. It was done by good professionals without any solder (and without any heat shrink). Wiring done by the PO later, lovingly crimped and soldered, has all failed, although it looks like it was done with skill. By "all" I mean 100%. The wires all broken just after the terminal, where solder wicked up the wire strands.
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Old 13-08-2014, 06:27   #47
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
I don't think any kind of wiring, no matter how well done, will last forever in the marine environment. If you get 20 years out of it, I think you've done really well.

The point is not to make it last forever, which is unrealistic, but to prevent premature failure.

My experience, for whatever it may be worth, is that soldered connections on boats fail very quickly. Good crimps last for a long time (if not forever). Just one data point: All the original wiring on my boat is in excellent shape after 13 years. It was done by good professionals without any solder (and without any heat shrink). Wiring done by the PO later, lovingly crimped and soldered, has all failed, although it looks like it was done with skill. By "all" I mean 100%. The wires all broken just after the terminal, where solder wicked up the wire strands.
Gotta agree in principle but I am curious; do you think the broken wires corroded and broke or vibrated and broke. It certainly seems like the PO didn't use best practise however he did it!

FWIW, I see very little vibration on my boat wiring but I see a heck of a lot of it in helicopter wiring - even when using best practices.
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Old 13-08-2014, 07:19   #48
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Also remember that while NASA standards are great, very few boats will be subjected to the rigors of interstellar travel. It is not expected that any Earth marine vessel ever will be replaced by V'Ger, regardless of the boat's wiring quality.
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On that we definitely agree.

...

Less than 1% will do it the FAA way or the NASA way.
Actually, I think it is zero percent.

Anyone should please chime-in to correct me if there are any NASA lash splices on your boat.


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Old 13-08-2014, 07:22   #49
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

ABYC and all other standards organizations I know prohibit soldering before crimping. That's obvious because you can't crimp after soldering.

I can't see how anyone can "properly solder" a joint after it has been crimped. Flux is usually applied to a "proper" solder joint. But you can't possibly put flux on before the crimp and after the crimp there is no way to get flux up into the crimp. So all you can do is put some solder on the wire but that solder is not going to be in the crimp area. So what good do you think the solder is doing? At best it's a waste of time.
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Old 13-08-2014, 07:35   #50
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Originally Posted by Wotname View Post
Gotta agree in principle but I am curious; do you think the broken wires corroded and broke or vibrated and broke. It certainly seems like the PO didn't use best practise however he did it!

FWIW, I see very little vibration on my boat wiring but I see a heck of a lot of it in helicopter wiring - even when using best practices.
Vibration or even just a little flex on the joint -- stranded wire which has been soldered becomes extremely brittle where the solder goes up the strands. Which is just where the joint needs to flex in case of vibration or simple deflection of the wire.

I'll bet there's no solder in helicopter wiring?
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Old 13-08-2014, 07:38   #51
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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This reply has good information and links on crimping and splices.

This reply shows how I implement staggered, soldered Western Union splices, using the wire to provide mechanical support.
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Originally Posted by Maine Sail View Post
Western Union / Linemans splices are, and have always been, intended for solid conductor wire. They are not intended to be used for stranded wire let alone the finely stranded wire we use on boats. NASA prohibits WU splices on stranded wire.
We agree, but mine are soldered Western Union splices. They do not comply w/ the NASA standard but are fully ABYC compliant.


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All wiring should conform to ABYC specifications.
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Originally Posted by Maine Sail View Post
Seeing as you said that, in one of the links;

The ABYC does not consider a WU splice a "mechanical connection" thus a soldered WU splice is considered "solder as the only means" and does not meet *ABYC standards. Again the WU splice is intended for solid conductor wire. We don't use solid conductor wire on boats and in fact go to the far extreme and use very finely stranded wire..

*This came from an E-11 standards clarification question that was clarified by John Adey.

That said, on your own boat you can do as you wish, until of course you get a surveyor who actually knows his stuff for an insurance survey...
This reply shows staggered, soldered, strain-relieved Western Union splices that are fully ABYC-compliant. The link shows a clever method to provide in-line mechanical support.

My boat has been modified and reworked to be fully ABYC-compliant. It in-fact far exceeds those requirements.
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Old 13-08-2014, 11:10   #52
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Originally Posted by wingless View Post
We agree, but mine are soldered Western Union splices. They do not comply w/ the NASA standard but are fully ABYC compliant.




This reply shows staggered, soldered, strain-relieved Western Union splices that are fully ABYC-compliant. The link shows a clever method to provide in-line mechanical support.

My boat has been modified and reworked to be fully ABYC-compliant. It in-fact far exceeds those requirements.
Sorry but you are simply incorrect on this and are incorrectly interpreting the standard. Please read what you quoted of me carefully. It explains it well.

No form of wire twisting of stranded wire counts as a "mechanical connection" under E-11. When the standards are not clear on a subject those of us who are members and certified can ask for "standards clarification", which I did, on this very subject.

The answer, saying a WU or any other form of wire twisting is not compliant, came from both the technical director at the time and John Adey, who is now the ABYC President..

I will mention it again, no form of wire twisting, including a Western Union splice, meets the E-11 standard as a mechanical connection. This was confirmed via a standards clarification question to the technical director and John Adey...

I am actively involved in developing these standards and I am not just shooting from the hip on this.
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Old 13-08-2014, 12:25   #53
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Originally Posted by Maine Sail View Post
Sorry but you are simply incorrect on this and are incorrectly interpreting the standard. Please read what you quoted of me carefully. It explains it well.

No form of wire twisting of stranded wire counts as a "mechanical connection" under E-11. When the standards are not clear on a subject those of us who are members and certified can ask for "standards clarification", which I did, on this very subject.

The answer, saying a WU or any other form of wire twisting is not compliant, came from both the technical director at the time and John Adey, who is now the ABYC President..

I will mention it again, no form of wire twisting, including a Western Union splice, meets the E-11 standard as a mechanical connection. This was confirmed via a standards clarification question to the technical director and John Adey...

I am actively involved in developing these standards and I am not just shooting from the hip on this.
Sorry there is confusion.

Perhaps the linked reply is not clear.

There is no contention by me that the mechanical connection is being created by the soldered splice.

Instead the mechanical connection is being made by folding the wire over onto itself, then securing the folded wire using wire ties, as shown in the link and as shown below.

This configuration has no mechanical stress possible on the solder joint, w/ all the mechanical stress being sustained by the wire, due to the configuration.


Splice Folded Onto Itself - Strain Relief Using Nylon Wire Ties
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Old 13-08-2014, 12:59   #54
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

Though people on this might find this interesting. It is Trojan's recommendation.
Bob
http://www.trojanbattery.com/pdf/WP_...Guide_0512.pdf
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Old 13-08-2014, 14:12   #55
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
I don't think any kind of wiring, no matter how well done, will last forever in the marine environment. If you get 20 years out of it, I think you've done really well.

The point is not to make it last forever, which is unrealistic, but to prevent premature failure.

My experience, for whatever it may be worth, is that soldered connections on boats fail very quickly. Good crimps last for a long time (if not forever). Just one data point: All the original wiring on my boat is in excellent shape after 13 years. It was done by good professionals without any solder (and without any heat shrink). Wiring done by the PO later, lovingly crimped and soldered, has all failed, although it looks like it was done with skill. By "all" I mean 100%. The wires all broken just after the terminal, where solder wicked up the wire strands.
My experience exactly. I've not had an issue with the original wiring done by Bristol, 35 years ago. It consists of crimped connections, without heat shrink.

The only trouble I've had were with crimps done badly by previous owners, and marine "professionals". I've even found wire nuts. Also some trouble with VHF connections, which is understandable after all this time.
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Old 13-08-2014, 14:13   #56
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Sorry there is confusion.

Perhaps the linked reply is not clear.

There is no contention by me that the mechanical connection is being created by the soldered splice.

Instead the mechanical connection is being made by folding the wire over onto itself, then securing the folded wire using wire ties, as shown in the link and as shown below.

This configuration has no mechanical stress possible on the solder joint, w/ all the mechanical stress being sustained by the wire, due to the configuration.


Splice Folded Onto Itself - Strain Relief Using Nylon Wire Ties
The physical wire to wire connection point or wire to terminal connection point is what is the "mechanical" connection is that ABYC E-11 refers to. This simply can not be any form of wire twisting regardless of what was done to strain relieve it. Every possible form of mechanical connection can't be included in the standard nor can every non-compliant form be laid out either. This is why we have the standards clarification process...

You have provided good strain relief which is also a requirement on top of the mechanical connection. Your wire to wire splice, regardless of the strain relief, would not technically be compliant...

This is not to say it will ever fail just that it is not technically a compliant form of wire to wire connection.

BTW the reason I asked for standards clarification was because in a one week period I had seen two finely stranded cables joined by WU splice part ways. One of them was a positive cable that was dangerously close to arcing on a neg busbar.... Neither of them was soldered thus the WU splice winds up being a poor mechanical connection, for finely stranded wire. On solid wire the wire will break before the WU splice, not so on stranded copper.....
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Old 13-08-2014, 14:29   #57
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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The physical wire to wire connection point or wire to terminal connection point is what is the "mechanical" connection is that ABYC E-11 refers to. This simply can not be any form of wire twisting regardless of what was done to strain relieve it. Every possible form of mechanical connection can't be included in the standard nor can every non-compliant form be laid out either. This is why we have the standards clarification process...

You have provided good strain relief which is also a requirement on top of the mechanical connection. Your wire to wire splice, regardless of the strain relief, would not technically be compliant...

This is not to say it will ever fail just that it is not technically a compliant form of wire to wire connection.

BTW the reason I asked for standards clarification was because in a one week period I had seen two finely stranded cables joined by WU splice part ways. One of them was a positive cable that was dangerously close to arcing on a neg busbar.... Neither of them was soldered thus the WU splice winds up being a poor mechanical connection, for finely stranded wire. On solid wire the wire will break before the WU splice, not so on stranded copper.....
The E-11 standard version I have states this: "Solder shall not be the sole means of mechanical connection in any circuit. If soldered, the connection shall be so located or supported as to minimize flexing of the conductor where the solder changes the flexible conductor into a solid conductor."

To my understanding, the soldered Western Union splice w/ the folded strain relief looks compliant to these requirements.

If these requirements have been superceded by different requirements that prohibit this implementation, then can that text please be posted?
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Old 13-08-2014, 14:34   #58
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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Though people on this might find this interesting. It is Trojan's recommendation.
Bob
http://www.trojanbattery.com/pdf/WP_...Guide_0512.pdf
I don't blame Trojan for mentioning that because most people assume this is a good crimp..



They also assume this is a good crimp tool. It simply produces horrible crimps.


With a proper lug crimp solder will NOT even flow into it because it simply can't, there is no room....

The crimps I make are water tight after six months submerged in water. How do I know? I have tested it. Fill end of closed lug with sugar, crimp wire into lug, cut wire 1" from end of lug and drop into a bucket of water. Six months later drill the end and out pours dry sugar. This is how a proper lug crimp is made and there is no additional heat even at high loads..

I run high "C" rate Li battery tests on a continual basis at amperage in excess of 200A. Some tests at 200A run for two solid hours. I have had my heat gun on everything. Poor crimps would heat up, good ones do not.

Problem is there are a lot of horrible lug crimping tools out there and people want to cut corners everywhere they can to save money.....
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Old 13-08-2014, 14:49   #59
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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The E-11 standard version I have states this: "Solder shall not be the sole means of mechanical connection in any circuit. If soldered, the connection shall be so located or supported as to minimize flexing of the conductor where the solder changes the flexible conductor into a solid conductor."

To my understanding, the soldered Western Union splice w/ the folded strain relief looks compliant to these requirements.

If these requirements have been superceded by different requirements that prohibit this implementation, then can that text please be posted?
I really can not be any clearer. A WU splice does not count as a "mechanical connection"..... Strain relief is in ADDITION TO the first step which is a solid mechanical connection between wire and wire or wire and terminal.

A WU is treated no differently then a solder only terminal with wire (not previously crimped). If it is not crimped first then it is a solder only connection and non-compliant. WU is not a mechanical connection per standards clarification of E-11.

Part #1
"Solder shall not be the sole means of mechanical connection in any circuit."

This means you need a crimp or other means of "mechanical connection" at the terminal to wire or wire to wire or wire to busbar etc. point. A WU splice does not count as a mechanical connection.

Part #2
"If soldered, the connection shall be so located or supported as to minimize flexing of the conductor where the solder changes the flexible conductor into a solid conductor."

This part is assuming we now have a compliant mechanical connection, because solder only is verboten, and is moving onto the part where the solder now makes the wire brittle and where strain relief "shall be located" at the point.

Part #1 = mechanical connection - you must have a mechanical connection and the connection can not solely rely on solder. Eg: Crimp first then solder. No wire twisting of any form counts as a mechanical connection. *See standards clarification explanation above.

Part #2 =
Strain Relief - This assumes you have now made a mechanical connection first, then added solder, and says that you shall now provide strain relief at the point where the wire changes from solid conductor to flexible. This is in addition to the first part where we first make a compliant mechanical connection, then apply solder..
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Old 13-08-2014, 16:56   #60
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Re: To Solder or Not.. That is the Question

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The E-11 standard version I have states this: "Solder shall not be the sole means of mechanical connection in any circuit. If soldered, the connection shall be so located or supported as to minimize flexing of the conductor where the solder changes the flexible conductor into a solid conductor."
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I really can not be any clearer.
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I am actively involved in developing these standards and I am not just shooting from the hip on this.
That goes a looong way to explaining why the standards convey information w/ such clarity.

So, the interpretations you present as correct are that the "mechanical connection" refers exclusively to the mechanical connection between the two conductors, not to the mechanical connection between the two parts, in this case the two wires and that there is NOT this required mechanical connection formed by the Western Union splice, the solder (ignored) and the adhesive-lined shrink tubing?

If all these interpretations are correct, then are there ABYC load or stress specifications defining minimum ratings for acceptable conductor mechanical connections?
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