# Can you solder wire rope?

#### wayneh

Joined Sep 9, 2010
16,128
I want to cross-connect 1/8" stainless steel wire rope. There's a perfect piece of hardware for this, see photo, but they're several dollars each and I need ~70 of them. I'm looking for a cheap alternative.

I've looked at a number of things but so far haven't come up with a clever solution. I've considered hot glue or J.B.Weld. Both might work but it's for an outdoor application (a trellis) and I don't think an adhesive will stand up to the elements.

A drop of solder - if it would tin and actually connect to the stainless, would probably be fine for my application. I imagine using my torch just like for sweating copper pipe, but is there a flux/solder combination that would work?

#### Kermit2

Joined Feb 5, 2010
4,163
stainless can be soldered with "some" difficulty.

I suggest the use of the dreaded acid flux and a very hot torch. afterwards you can scrub with a strong base like diluted sodium hydroxide to kill the acid. It you can get the flux out you will not have any problems.

Joined Jul 18, 2013
19,459
Silver solder or Braze, but S.S. is lower melt point. and use Borax for flux.
Max.

#### Kermit2

Joined Feb 5, 2010
4,163
Have you considered a weave pattern and anchor points only around the perimeter?

#### shortbus

Joined Sep 30, 2009
7,245
I have used this liquid flux for both stainless and regular wire rope and it works great. Found it when a friend had a Ford Mustang restoration shop. The automatic transmission floor shifters have a cable going thru the center of them that ends in the push button in the shifter knob. The end of the cable was/is known to break off, and you had to buy a whole new shifter to repair them. He had a bunch of broken ones and asked if I could repair them. I got some of this flux and soldered the end back on, it was originally crimped on from the factory. This was ~20 years ago and none of them ever came back as broken. https://www.castolin.com/en-CA/product/eutector-flux-157 All of the Eutectic brand soldering and welding stuff is top notch good stuff.

#### tracecom

Joined Apr 16, 2010
3,944
I want to cross-connect 1/8" stainless steel wire rope. There's a perfect piece of hardware for this, see photo, but they're several dollars each and I need ~70 of them. I'm looking for a cheap alternative.

I've looked at a number of things but so far haven't come up with a clever solution. I've considered hot glue or J.B.Weld. Both might work but it's for an outdoor application (a trellis) and I don't think an adhesive will stand up to the elements.

A drop of solder - if it would tin and actually connect to the stainless, would probably be fine for my application. I imagine using my torch just like for sweating copper pipe, but is there a flux/solder combination that would work?

View attachment 103559
I would think you could make fittings similar to the photo without too much trouble: drill and tap bar stock, cut notches with a band saw, screw in two bolts.

#### Lestraveled

Joined May 19, 2014
1,946
Have you considered bare copper wire. It develops a very nice patina after a while and of course it is very easy to solder.

#### Dr.killjoy

Joined Apr 28, 2013
1,196
You could split the wire and feed the wire through the middle ??

#### Lestraveled

Joined May 19, 2014
1,946
For stainless steel you might consider a "hog ring". It is a piece of s.s. wire bent in a semi circle. You would crimp it at the cable crossings.

#### wayneh

Joined Sep 9, 2010
16,128
I have used this liquid flux for both stainless and regular wire rope and it works great. Found it when a friend had a Ford Mustang restoration shop. The automatic transmission floor shifters have a cable going thru the center of them that ends in the push button in the shifter knob. The end of the cable was/is known to break off, and you had to buy a whole new shifter to repair them. He had a bunch of broken ones and asked if I could repair them. I got some of this flux and soldered the end back on, it was originally crimped on from the factory. This was ~20 years ago and none of them ever came back as broken. https://www.castolin.com/en-CA/product/eutector-flux-157 All of the Eutectic brand soldering and welding stuff is top notch good stuff.
What kind of solder did you use?

#### jpanhalt

Joined Jan 18, 2008
8,346
It will be quite hard to get the manufacturing oils out of the rope for a clean solder joint, and the heat of brazing will affect its strength.

The usual way is some sort of screw fitting or swaged fitting. You might consider swaging a tube of easily soldered metal on each piece at the intersection and then soldering the tubes (flattened) together. That is a variation on Lestraveled's suggestion. Alternatively, if you need more strength, I would braze a cross together, insert the wire rope and then crimp it.

You can use regular tin/lead solder on stainless. I would use an aggressive acid cleaner.

John

#### paulktreg

Joined Jun 2, 2008
775
Could you slot some heavy bolts with an angle grinder and just use a standard nut and washers to fix?

Is the wire splittable? If you could get a pop rivet through with a washer either side that may do it?

#### KeepItSimpleStupid

Joined Mar 4, 2014
3,765
Well, braze (Silver Solder) or spot weld. For brazing you;ll likely need a MAP or MAP/OXy torch. I liked Sta-SlV solder paste.

#### SLK001

Joined Nov 29, 2011
1,541

#### tcmtech

Joined Nov 4, 2013
2,868
Nobody has mentioned lead yet, but there must be some sort of lead fishing sinker I could smash onto each intersection. But this is going to be near my garden, so that's a no go.
Why? You have a bad habit of chewing on cables when you're in the garden?