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Scotch Lock Connectors

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    Scotch Lock Connectors

    I'm about to wire in a 7 way smart relay for towbar wiring for a rear light board on my 2014 Ducato. What's your view on scotch lock connectors - should I keep it simple and use them, or are they unreliable and is there a better way? How would an auto-electrician do it (other than using the mega-expensive dedicated wiring!)? Thanks, Mike

    #2
    I would avoid ScotchLocks like the plague - they are good in the short term but as they cut into the insulation of the wiring they ultimately allow damp to get into the wiring and ultimately the loom will break-down!

    Cut, solder, seal with heat shrink sleeves is the best - even if you have to make 2 joints to lengthen the wiring if it is really tight.

    Jon
    Fast becoming a GOG (Grumpy Old Git:joker:)

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      #3
      Thanks Jon - what do you use as the heat source for the heat shrink sleeves?

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        #4
        Originally posted by mike123 View Post
        Thanks Jon - what do you use as the heat source for the heat shrink sleeves?
        Hair dryer or a hot air gun - I used to use a lighter but it is a bit fierce.

        Jon
        Fast becoming a GOG (Grumpy Old Git:joker:)

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          #5
          I use a hot air gun to shrink it but you can use the tip of the soldering iron.

          I dont always solder joints, I sometimes use crimp on connectors but I have a fairly good crimping tool.

          Scotchlocks are the spawn of the devil and should be avoided at all costs. I would rather use choc block connectors with screws than scotchlocks even though they are supplied with a lot of electrical equipment.

          Peter

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            #6
            I'm with Peter and Jon. Skotchloks have a relatively high contact resistance because they have a very small area of contact with the copper, even when new. And they vary in quality. Do you remember when car alarms were a novelty, before they were fitted by manufacturers? They were always going off and no one took any notice. They way they worked was to detect a tiny drop in voltage in the car wiring somewhere. This tiny volt drop was caused by the resistance in the Skotchlock connectors that were used in the alarm wiring. When I was manfacturing reversing sensors for Rover the only wiring connectors they would accept were Raychem heat shrink sleeved crimp connectors which had a heat sensitive adhesive internally. They consisted of a copper tube that was crushed on to the conductor and then when you applied heat the adhesive would melt around the joint and the sleeve would shrink around it. The result was a very very low resistance joint, which was waterproof and stronger than the wires it was joining. This is the sort of thing, they are far cheaper now than they were when I had to buy them from Raychem
            https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/100x-Heat...AAAOSwC1pe41Bx
            No freewheeling downhill run will go unpunished . . . .

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              #7
              OK thanks everyone - have just ordered a hot air gun and some heat shrink tubing which will come in useful for a couple of other tidying jobs I need to do anyway. I have used scotch blocks in the past and although I've not had problems they've never seemed like a good idea which is why I asked. I'm doing my best to make sure any work done on my campervan is done to a high standard with a view to making it last. Thanks again, Mike.

              edit - meant to say - I have ordered some of the heat shrink butt connectors too
              Last edited by mike123; 17-12-2020, 19:56.

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