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Old 29-11-2020, 20:57   #1
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3-way wire splice?

Iím wiring up some new cabin lights and really could use some three-way splices. Some products enable you to make such a splice in the middle of a run without cutting the wire or stripping the insulation. Does anyone recommend those types of products or have a good product to recommend?

I will be running 10-12 AWG and 14-16 AWG circuits
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Old 29-11-2020, 21:03   #2
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Here’s a Chinese product

https://usa.banggood.com/T-21-1Way-L...r_warehouse=CN
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Old 29-11-2020, 21:05   #3
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Here’s another type on defender.com

https://www.defender.com/product.jsp?id=3420435

This type requires you to cut and strip the wire
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Old 29-11-2020, 21:14   #4
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

If you are talking about a power tap without stripping the insulation then it's probably an insulation displacement connector (IDC). Something like this:



or this:


the problem with these (on a boat) is that the piercing in the insulation can allow moisture into the wire somewhere in the middle, leading to corrosion, etc. They also don't carry a ton of current, but could be OK power wise for LEDs/lights.

The traditional way of doing this, other than terminal blocks, is a three-way butt connector:



The problem with these, though, is insulating the center section.

I tend to use power strips/terminal blocks, but that's more time and space consuming (full disclosure, I've used all three on a boat - IDCs packed with dielectric grease can possibly be OK but are certainly not on the recommended list).
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Old 29-11-2020, 21:18   #5
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

I use Wago Lever Nuts for lighting circuits. Quick, easy and secure.
http://https://www.amazon.com/Wago-2...6-8a5c26cd5a14
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Old 29-11-2020, 21:26   #6
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Is that a real link?
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Old 29-11-2020, 21:28   #7
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

The traditional way of doing this, other than terminal blocks, is a three-way butt connector:



The problem with these, though, is insulating the center section.

I tend to use power strips/terminal blocks, but that's more time and space consuming (full disclosure, I've used all three on a boat - IDCs packed with dielectric grease can possibly be OK but are certainly not on the recommended list).[/QUOTE]

Yeah, I don’t know what they were thinking when they designed that.
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Old 29-11-2020, 21:30   #8
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

.Link is very long. Search for Wago Wire Nuts on Amazon.
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Old 29-11-2020, 22:01   #9
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Here's a short link to the Wago Lever Nut, quite interesting.
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Old 29-11-2020, 22:16   #10
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigjim View Post
I’m wiring up some new cabin lights and really could use some three-way splices. Some products enable you to make such a splice in the middle of a run without cutting the wire or stripping the insulation. Does anyone recommend those types of products or have a good product to recommend?

I will be running 10-12 AWG and 14-16 AWG circuits
First, are your new cabin lights LEDs? (they really should be, for the energy saving). If they are, then have you worked out what the actual current is going to be? You might be able to safely use a lighter gauge of wire.

Those insulation piercing connections are not a great idea on a boat. The connection point is prone to corrosion, and they can partially cut the wires.

Where I can, I like to use cap splices. They have UL and other approvals and are used legally all the time for joining stranded wire in many appliances. You have to leave enough slack in your wires so there's maybe 4" sticking out so that you can strip ends and twist the wires together. Then you just pick the smallest cap that will fit over the twisted ends, you can see when the wires are fully into the metal sleeve... and then crimp. You can waterproof the connection by shoving sealant around the wires at the open end.

As long as the stripped and twisted bunch can get into and through the metal sleeve, you can use one cap to join 2,3,4 wires. Any more and you should be considering some sort of buss bar.


[Edit - those Wago lever nuts look pretty cool too, but can they be waterproofed? eg some kind of grease?]
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Old 30-11-2020, 00:14   #11
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Just stick 2 wires in 1 end of a butt splice.
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Old 30-11-2020, 00:35   #12
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Quote:
Originally Posted by smac999 View Post
Just stick 2 wires in 1 end of a butt splice.
+1
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Old 30-11-2020, 03:42   #13
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

[QUOTE=Lake-Effect;3285278Where I can, I like to use cap splices.[/QUOTE]
And require a unique tool ($50 - $100) to crimp.
Otherwise, they're great.
Buchanon Splice Cap: A tubular copper crimp sleeve, covered by a push-on nylon insulating cap.
https://www.platt.com/search.aspx?q=buchanan+splice+cap




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Old 30-11-2020, 05:44   #14
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Quote:
Originally Posted by smac999 View Post
Just stick 2 wires in 1 end of a butt splice.

As long as the sizes are such that you can fit 2 and still get a good crimp on the other end, I agree.
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Old 30-11-2020, 06:32   #15
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Re: 3-way wire splice?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigjim View Post
Iím wiring up some new cabin lights and really could use some three-way splices. Some products enable you to make such a splice in the middle of a run without cutting the wire or stripping the insulation. Does anyone recommend those types of products or have a good product to recommend?

I will be running 10-12 AWG and 14-16 AWG circuits

There is no good way to do it, and so the best practice is to wire the boat some other way.


Insulation displacement splices aren't the least bit reliable. I've cut out dozens of them from trailers, boats, cars, etc. over the years after they've failed.


Yes you can jam two wires into a butt splice connector but in most cases you will have to tape or heat shrink it because the wire insulation will not fit reliably under the insulation sleeve of the splice. There are some specific combinations that will work well and others that will not. For example if you are splicing #14 or #16 into a #14 run then you can't use a blue (14-16) splice because it's too small for the #14 and #16 together, and you can't use a yellow (10-12) splice because it's too large and won't hold securely. On the other hand if you're splicing #18 into a #16 run it works OK with a blue.



Or you can use solder and heat shrink.


Best practice is to make the junctions at the ends of the wire runs.
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