I am building a control panel that i would like to be able to disconnect from a portable layout. Does anyone have recommendations on where to obtain disconnectable wire-to-wire connectors? I will be using 20awg wire, and will have a total of about 50 wires running from the control panel to the layout. Two separate connections of 25 wires each would be ideal.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions!
A little pricey, but I have used these and they work extremely well.
Posi-tap Connectors, 20-22 Gauge Wire, Bulk Pack of 20
If you have an electronics supply or industrial surplus store nearby, you can often buy connectors as would be used in manufactured goods. These are usually assembled by crimping pins or sockets on your wires, then inserting the pins/sockets in the connector body. They are designed to be crimped on with a special tool, but you can usually crimp them with needle nose pliers if you're careful.
Make sure you insert them in the body where you intend to, the first time. It usually requires a special tool to remove them. (Some can be extracted with a hobby knife.)
This approach will save you a lot of money and give a professional installation, but will cost you some time.
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Thanks for the helpful suggestion. I really appreciate it!
Thanks, Wazoo and Canalligators! Your suggetions are really helpful!
I use TE Connectivity AMP connectors (Plastic Amphenol). They are excellent.
Buy a parallel port extension cable. It will have 50 conductors in it, all nicely color coded. (MUST BE EXTENSION CABLE, regular printer cables have different plugs on each end.)
CUT IT IN HALF, and wire each have as needed, and then you can plug and uplug it with the connector ends.
Better hurry, these things are becoming obsolete. Try Cables to Go. (C2G.com)
ot this one which seems to be out of stock until June:
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I use Molex® connectors from my pike to the control board.
These are typically found in automotive applications. The connectors come in different sizes.
It does require a special crimper for the pins, which can be expensive.
If you are crimping that many wires then the expense of the crimper would amortize over time.
There is a less expensive crimper that is a little more work. I use this one and it took a little practice to get the crimps right.
Hope this helps.
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You might want to check out Cannon Plug Connectors.
As yu can see they come in all sizes and configurations. Ebay might be the place that has the lowest prices.
your options are DB/Molex, bullet/banana, spade with bus, and 2 piece tap connectors
Don - Specializing in layout DC->DCC conversions
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I worked with those types of connectors for 15-years in the touring lighting industry. They are generically called Socapex.
They are built to military specifications- -literally "bullet proof".
The drawbacks are that the pins need to be soldered, there are special seating tools for both the female and male pins, and the connectors themselves are heavy.
For modeling purposes I would stick with a plastic connection system.
Or you could look at "D" connection types that are used in computer systems. Again, these are solder type connectors versus a crimped pin system.
I know exactly what you are talking about jjdamnit. I have been in the entertainment industry for over 30 years and I know what you are talking about. Depending on the size Soca connector you use you would have to do a lot of soldering. The standard Soca connector only has six connections. You have a hot, neutral and ground. So if you wanted to use it for 50 connections you would need 9 connectors. And you would need a male and female for each. Oh by the way at the Rat House the call them Multi Connectors. Good luck.
I was talking about cannon plugs, used in the millitary and industry. Some that we used were 2" in diameter with 20-25 or more pins in them. They are a pain to solder the wire into the pins, but it is once and done. We never pulled the pins out.
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