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How to Make Cables?


NYKeys

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Can anyone shed some good tips or websites on how to make cables.

 

With companies like onster-may (sue you if you use THAT Name)

I have decided to look into making my own cables. People say it's cheap and easy to do. Any help would be appreciated

 

I had the following in mind

 

XLR Male to Female

1/4 TR

 

Who knows I might try to create a 1/4 to XLR

MY Toys - Kurzweil PC1X, Roland A-90, Yamaha KX88, Yamaha CS1x, Novation 49SL MkII, Presonus Studiolive 16.4.2, JBL PRX615M

 

My Music Page

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I originally learned just by looking at existing cables that I broke (long before the Internet).

 

1/4 to XLR requires a transformer in between, unless it's just working as an adapter. Make absolutely sure that's what's needed.

 

A simple 10W soldering iron/pencil is all you'll need.

 

This site isn't too bad for some basic info.

 

http://www.mediacollege.com/audio/connection/

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I can't really tell you how but I can give you some things to consider:

 

You need the right tools: Solder iron, soder wick, needle-nose pliers, wire strippers/cutters, exacto knife, small vise, etc

are some you may need. An Ohm meter's (DMM)is nice to have

 

parts: connectors, cable (obvious).

 

 

I like Mogami cable and Neutrik XLRs or stereo 1/4 inch. I use Switchcraft for mono 1/4 inch. Many on this forum prefer Canare quad cable. Right angle connectors can get pricy in quantity.

 

Either way to really save money over the long haul you'll need to buy in bulk. This can be a significant outlay up front. I buy Mogami(2549 -balanced and 2524-guitar) at 200 ft min a shot. Connectors I'll buy 25 or 50 of a type at a time. I don't do this often but I try to stay stocked as I know I'll use them eventually. Same if you're doing midi cabling.

 

Consider the time you're spending. It can take a good amount even with experience.

 

The benefit is making cables to your exact specification. I recommend trying it with a cable or two and see if it's what you want to do. I've saved plenty over the years -I've been doing this for a long time. But it may not be worth the hassle to you.

 

 

 

 

 

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I order my cable supplies from Markertek. Canare Star Quad in any color you want, $0.36 per foot. Mogami is nice, but for gig cables its overkill. Frankly, I use Canare in my home studio and its great.

 

http://www.markertek.com/SearchProduct.asp?item=L%2D4E6S&off=4&sort=prod

 

I like the Neutrik connectors, since they are extremely easy to put together. The NC3FX and the NC3MX are under $2.00 a piece from Markertek.

 

http://www.markertek.com/SearchProduct.asp?item=NC3FX&off=3&sort=prod

 

Wiring XLRs is easy. Pin 1 is ground (shield). Pin 2 is usually positive (I use the white leads in the Canare cable). Pin 3 is negative (I use the blue leads in the Caanare cable). Wire up both sides the same and you're good to go.

 

XLR to TS are usually wired with Pin 3 of the XLR going to ground on the 1/4" side.

 

Get one of those Weller 25watt solder irons (the ones that are under $20) and practice if you've never soldered before. There is an art to it... you have to be patient, let the iron heat up fully and let the solder flow naturally. If you rush, you'll get "cold" solder joints that will be no good. Also, I find that tining each part makes it much easier. In other words, tin the leads by heating them and flowing a little solder on them. Tin the ends of the connector as well. Then when you put the two together, they will bond much easier and better looking.

 

Good luck! I love making cables. I just placed a big order to Markertek for cable and connectors. I've got some studio lines to run! :)

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Consider the time you're spending. It can take a good amount even with experience.

 

Yeah, this is precisely why I don't make cables. I have both the tools and the skills to do it, but when I compare the cost of materials plus my time to the cost of manufactured cables, it just seems silly.

 

I have the luxury of a decent day job though -- if I was trying to make a living playing music, I would probably see that equation much differently.

 

--Dave

Make my funk the P-funk.

I wants to get funked up.

 

My Funk/Jam originals project: http://www.thefunkery.com/

 

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I used to make my own cables back in the early '90s when I was using some really long ones and I was a stickler about everything starting and terminating the same length in my rack coming from stage gear. So I made many, many cables. I still have most of them and they all still work. I think my craftsmanship was probably better than store-bought, but these days, I don't really have the time, so I buy cables when I need them.

 

One thing you must NEVER EVER FORGET when rolling your own cables...do not forget, I repeat, DO NOT FORGET to put the female threaded sleeve down on the wire BEFORE you solder the stuff to the 1/4" jack. I cannot tell you how many times I would finish up a nice little TRS cable with beautiful length and soldering (the TRS are a little more tricky), only to look down and realize I forgot to slip the sleeve on and then all work must be reversed or you just cut it off and start fresh with a new 1/4" jack. Very frustrating!

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One thing you must NEVER EVER FORGET when rolling your own cables...do not forget, I repeat, DO NOT FORGET to put the female threaded sleeve down on the wire BEFORE you solder the stuff to the 1/4" jack. I cannot tell you how many times I would finish up a nice little TRS cable with beautiful length and soldering (the TRS are a little more tricky), only to look down and realize I forgot to slip the sleeve on and then all work must be reversed or you just cut it off and start fresh with a new 1/4" jack. Very frustrating!

 

Ha! Fancy doing that. (Its nice to hear I'm not the only one)

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One thing you must NEVER EVER FORGET when rolling your own cables...do not forget, I repeat, DO NOT FORGET to put the female threaded sleeve down on the wire BEFORE you solder the stuff to the 1/4" jack. I cannot tell you how many times I would finish up a nice little TRS cable with beautiful length and soldering (the TRS are a little more tricky), only to look down and realize I forgot to slip the sleeve on and then all work must be reversed or you just cut it off and start fresh with a new 1/4" jack. Very frustrating!

 

Ha! Fancy doing that. (Its nice to hear I'm not the only one)

 

ha! fancy doing that. (it's nice to hear I'm not the only one ... we should start a club) :thu:

Jimmy

 

Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others. Groucho

NEW BAND CHECK THEM OUT

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www.jimmyweaver.com

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