Hi, All! I'm adding a Signal Dynamics "Back Off" unit and LED license plate frame to my bike. Jim and I spent some time today studying the wiring. I like the quick connect wire connectors that Kaw uses for the turn signal wiring, it made the turn signal relocation a real snap to do. I would like to use something like that to splice in the new units, so they could be easily removed if necessary. Does anyone know of a good source for this sort of connector?
This should be a fairly easy one. Numerous places carry those type connectors. They are called bullet connectors
. Radio Shack and just about every auto parts store carries them. They may not look identical but you should be looking for "Bullet" connectors. Take note of the colors. Each color represents a range of wire gages. The three colors that I remember is yellow, red and blue. Looking at the Radio Shack website, I came up with the following.
The normal size we would use is the 22 - 16 gage.
If you want to make a y connector you can use the blue ones assuming you are using 16 - 18 gage. If using 20 - 22 gage, you can get by with the red ones. Catalog #: 64-3086 14 - 16 gage Crimp-On Snap Connectors (blue) Catalog #: 64-3085 22 - 16 gage Crimp-On Snap Connectors (red)
Another good source. Use CAT# 5500 FULLY INSULATED MALE BULLET CONN., BLUE And CAT# 5700 FULLY INSULATED FEMALE BULLET CONN., BLUE together and CAT# 5400 FULLY INSULATED MALE BULLET CONN., RED And CAT# 5600 FULLY INSULATED FEMALE BULLET CONN., RED together
I have a ton of those in my garage and hate them... If I had to, I would use the bullet connectors, but it is next to impossible to do a proper solder job on those and everyone knows how I feel about crimp connectors... If needed, I can create a harness with those so that the BackOFF can be removed with little fuss... Not a problem...
I figured the crimp connectors would not take kindly to the vibration and dirty environment on the bike. I disapprove on principle of having to stop in the middle of a ride to monkey around with my electrics, so my first thought was to get out the soldering iron. If nothing else, working 12 years for the phone company taught me which end of a soldering iron to grab, and what I solder stays connected. However, it would be nice to be able to patch quickly around the Back-Off unit, in the event it failed during a ride, and those OEM connectors look like they would do the job nicely.
I would recommend that your BackOFF be attached with bullet connectors so that it can be removed in under a minute. I've personally never seen one fail and have used mine for over 6 years now with no problems, but it is best to prepare for the worst and expect the best... You and I share the same belief on electrical connections. Solder doesn't vibrate loose... Now, I have seen the Diamond Star Headlight Modulator fail once (to me). Signal Dynamics took care of me right away and I am very pleased by their customer service.
I get them at Auto Zone..and yes..I do crimp them on..but I cut the leader on the wire long so it sticks out a bit after inserting in into the connector,Then I solder it there...Then I use small lengths of surgical tubing to cover the connectors inline. A wrap of electical tape at each end seals in the connector and provides some support so they don't pull apart easily. The advantage of the surgical tubing is that it is easy to remove..you just pull off the tape at the ends and slide it down..You mentioned you wanted to be able to disconnect it easily. Some stores sell a Kit with connectors and a crimping tool.. Knifemaker
you can do a professional crimp, but you need a professional tool, like the t and b staycon lug crimper I have, it is not one of those weenie crimpers, it is 10 inches long and thick steel like plyers are made from with a tooth in the round crimp surface, You must use good quality crimp terminals too like 3M nylon insulated thick tinned copper/brass insert crimps, these crimpers will cut in half those wimpy wally world crimp terminals. I have been in the public safety installation buisiness for 12 years and peoples lives sometimes are at stake when these high current draw lightbars and radios are in use, and these crimps do not come loose!!! I have been putting them on for all this time and out of the multi thousands, maybe 3 went bad. but at 25 cents each, you would expect them to stay on right? -Beavis
We use crimp style connectors on 40 million dollar business jets with great success and they are Mil-Spec to boot. Of course they are not from Radio Shack. Have used them for over 30 years. As long as they are properly installed and used correctly they are just as good as a solder connection for most applications. There are environmental splices for harsh conditions as well. JM2CW Phil 'Stargazer'