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New Product: Solder Sleeves!

A common issue we hear from our customers is that wiring is difficult- terminal blocks can wiggle loose, and soldering can be intimidating if you haven’t done it before. We struggled with how best to help our customers solve this problem, but then the golden solution appeared before our very eyes in a solder fume-induced vision:

Artist's depiction of solder fume-induced vision

What is this plastic-looking cylindrical object, you ask? It’s called a solder sleeve, and it joins wires together electrically and mechanically at the same time using these three common items cleverly combined:

  • Heat shrink tubing
  • Solder
  • Hot melt glue

How does it work? Like so:

Note: this depiction is sped up a bit to keep the .gif at a reasonable size.

It’s crazy easy and fast, and requires no soldering iron- just a source of heat such as one of our new heat guns- any heat gun should work, but a hair dryer may not get hot enough.

The heat melts the solder to form an electrical connection, melts the glue to hold the wires in place, and tightens the heat shrink to form a strain-relief and insulate the exposed wires. All at once. Boom.

Bonus: The resulting joint is waterproof!

Solder sleeves solve another related problem- splitting one wire into many, or vice-versa. It’s just as easy (and just as quick) to join a number of wires using the same technique. This is useful in situations like slaving two stepper motors to a single driver, or running multiple connections to the GND of an Arduino:

IMG_6838.jpg

We now carry packs of 50 of a few common gauges, and a kit with an assortment of multiple gauges so you’ll always have the right size handy. Do yourself a kindness and check out the details on the product page. Your future self will thank you.

IMG_6835.jpg

7 comments:

Sima said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sima said...

How do you avoid a cold solder joint? Won't the insulation start burning before the solder and wires are at the right temp?

Jon Baker said...

These use hi-temp shrink and low-temp solder. Scorching the insulation shouldn't be a problem unless you leave the heat gun on the wire with no shrink over it too long.

Bart Dring said...

We tried a heat gun, a lighter and an SMT hot air rework station. The heat gun is the awesome, the lighter actually worked, but is probably likely to scorch a few. The hot air SMT had a tiny tip and tended to scorch them.

We had almost the entire staff try these out and everyone was able to make a nice connection with the heat gun. I like to spin the connection in front of the heat gun, like I am toasting a marshmellow.

Rick Rogahn said...

How much do they weight?

Bart Dring said...

They are pretty light and hard to weigh. The weights are approx.

0.8g for the white
0.32g for the red
0.63g for the blue
0.81g for the yellow

Perfect for drones!

joey1216 said...

So no flux?