DIY cables? tough? easy? cost-effective?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Aaron H, Aug 18, 2002.

  1. Aaron H

    Aaron H Supporting Actor

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    Hi everyone,
    I was just wondering what it takes to get into making your own interconnect cables. Are there other companies (www.diycable.com) that make it cheap enough that it doesn't make sense to make your own, or can you still save some money by doing it yourself?
    If anyone has any good web pages for getting started into this, it'd be much appreciated!
    Aaron
     
  2. Pete Jennings

    Pete Jennings Second Unit

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    You can make your money back in savings, depending on how many cables you need. You can get a good idea of material costs over at Vince Maskeeper's thread in the For-Sale forum. He is basically building them for HTF members at cost. The link is: http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...threadid=77599
    I use RhinoCables, and love them. They use Belden cable in their interconnects.
    Good luck!
    Pete
     
  3. Chris Keen

    Chris Keen Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I also have a question. I hate to piggy-back off of your question, but since my question is in line with your topic, I think I should.

    I recently purchased some Canare Starquad speaker cable 4s11 size. I also purchased some techflex, and some nice banana and spade connectors. I'm putting together some DIY speaker cables.

    My question is with regards to the connectors. The connectors (both banana and spade) have ends that screw off and a hole in the bottom of the end that screws out. I take it that I'm to insert the wire through this hole, but what I'm not too sure about is how I'm supposed to secure the connectors onto the cable. I know it's probably something simple that I'm missing, and I feel like an idiot for asking, but if I don't, I won't learn the proper way to do this.

    These are made by Connectronics and are listed on the Markertek website as Deluxe Spade Connector or Deluxe Banana Connector with regards to each one. They are definitely nicely made, I'm just not sure how to install them. Any help is greatly appreciated.
     
  4. Aaron H

    Aaron H Supporting Actor

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    No problem, Chris - the more the merrier.

    I also have another question. Is it possible to make s-video cables? I have been looking at a lot of people doing the DIY thing, but mostly see speaker cables and RCA interconnects. Just wonder if the S-Video are even possible to do yourself.

    Aaron
     
  5. Brian Bunge

    Brian Bunge Producer

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    Chris,

    It sounds like they are compression type connectors. If so, you strip the wire, stick it through the bottom part of the connector, and then fan the strands out over the end of the bottom piece. Then you simply screw the bottom part into the top part. It compresses the strands in between the two parts of the connector.

    Aaron,

    It's possible to make your own S-video cables but it requires soldering 4 individual wires onto each end of the connector. Both the wires and the solder lugs are rather small and take a lot of care to get a good solid joint. For this reason many people simply buy pre-made S-video cables. The Dayton series that Parts Express sells are dirt cheap and good quality.

    Brian
     
  6. Pete Jennings

    Pete Jennings Second Unit

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    Aaron, unless you are into self-pain and VERY good soldering *very* small wires I would steer of making your own s-video cables. It just ain't worth it. I would imagine s-video cables have the highest failure rate for any audio/video cable. I have read recently where one of the better known Internet cable companies had trouble with a few of their s-video cables, and they solder for a living!

    Pete
     
  7. Daniel J

    Daniel J Stunt Coordinator

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    S-Video isn't nearly as hard to solder as 15-pin D-sub (for VGA) [​IMG]
    RadioShack has some spools of cable and solder-on connectors; I've not calculated how much you'd save VS prebuilt, though.
    Back to the original topic; It all depends how much cable you are going to make. The crimping eqipment isn't cheap, so it's definitly not worthwhile unless you
    A: are making lots of cables
    B: really fond of making stuff yourself
    C: don't mind waiting longer
    If you think you could apply these to yourself, and you have the money, go for it!
     
  8. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    Easy and VERY cost effective. If you're not going to do many, I recommend the soldered connection type RCA's.
     
  9. Judy Y

    Judy Y Stunt Coordinator

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    I am an absolute klutz when it comes to building ANYTHING. I have successfully made 12 cables, (oh, yeah, and had one dud because I foolishly did not review the directions and THEN skipped one of the testing stages). I have ONLY used canare and Dayton crimp on plugs. (I still need to A/B them to see which I may prefer.)

    I have made some longer run cables that saved me lots of money- even with the cost of coax strippers, dies and a solid continuity tester.

    Chris White's page is a great primer, but I have found out quite a bit at HTF, as well, especially with the "testing" of the cables.

    Trust me, if I can do it, anyone can!
     
  10. Chris Keen

    Chris Keen Stunt Coordinator

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    Brian,

    Thanks for the heads up. Gonna try that this evening. I'll let you know how it works.

    I love that there is such a vast knowledge-base of information out here. It really does provide an incredibly quick learning curve for newbies like me.
     

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