Best/Most secure way to tap an existing wire?

Thread Starter

Ed. M.

Joined Nov 8, 2017
27
Hi,

I have a bundle of 19-20 AWG wires (40+). I need to tap about 30 of them. I've been using these:
https://www.altex.com/3M-Scotchlok-IDC-26-19-AWG-Tap-Connector?location=10&quantity=1
I'm having two issues:
1. They're too bulky
2. They don't provide a secure enough connection. I'll test one and it works, then the next day after I move some wires around it doesn't.

I was looking at possibly something like this:
https://www.amazon.com/Wire-Connectors-Solderless-Stripping-Connection/dp/B07114RK67/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=wire+tap+connect&qid=1573745918&sr=8-3
Are there better options? I'd like it to be as small as possible. I even tried stripping some of the main wire, then running the tap wire through the main and twisting and soldering, but the results were pretty bad.

Thanks.
 

SamR

Joined Mar 19, 2019
1,297
That and some shrink wrap tubing work best. Don't forget to put the tubing over the wire before splicing as I too often do.
 

SLK001

Joined Nov 29, 2011
1,529
Are there better options? I'd like it to be as small as possible. I even tried stripping some of the main wire, then running the tap wire through the main and twisting and soldering, but the results were pretty bad.
I agree with @nsaspook . Practice your soldering skills until your results are not "pretty bad". Applying some paste flux for electronics will help the solder flow into and smoothly around the joint.
 

SamR

Joined Mar 19, 2019
1,297
I use the paste on board pads so it will stay there but for twisted wire just a drop of liquid flux will flow into the joint and wet the wires. When iron applied it bubbles up and vaporizes letting the solder do a great job.
 

nsaspook

Joined Aug 27, 2009
6,487
I agree with @nsaspook . Practice your soldering skills until your results are not "pretty bad". Applying some paste flux for electronics will help the solder flow into and smoothly around the joint.
There are uses for those taps. In an emergency or when you are really lazy. Being lazy is a valid excuse for using one but never in an emergency. If you have 5 seconds to short wires to defuse the 'bomb' they are useful. The problem is 10 seconds later. After everyone catches their breath, you start to wonder how long the shorted connections will last. :eek:
 
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SamR

Joined Mar 19, 2019
1,297
I have used them and regret that I ever did. They will work for a while but the eventual results from the insulation penetration and wire exposure to the environment with the incipient corrosion will cause problems later.
 
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