6 AWG Crimp Lug Anarchy

DDW

Super Anarchist
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You can crimp a connector with a good blow from a hammer. But you can't do a reliable crimp that way. Yeah, cover it with heat shrink and it'll look the same, but it won't perform the same. 

Asking Ancor for a dimension across the flats for your PRC HF crimper, what exactly did you expect them to do? Crimps can be square, hexagonal, anvil type and several other shapes. The widths and dimensions can be all over the place. The only thing you could expect is for them to tell you the dimensions of a crimp done with an Ancor branded crimper. 

There is a mystique around here about crimpers, just buy one and operate it till the handles close and you have a good crimp. No. Tyco (AMP) has some pretty good technical literature on this, the crimper has to be calibrated to the wire and terminals being used, and recalibrated periodically if you want to maintain mil spec crimps. If you are mixing and matching, the only way to ensure a good crimp is to test one with the mix and match you are using. Pull testing is only one test, you really should resistance test them as well. Absent that, the Ancor hammer crimper does a decent job, costs even less the the HF, and is much quicker to use. 

 

Gabe_nyc

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Asking Ancor for a dimension across the flats for your PRC HF crimper, what exactly did you expect them to do? ... The only thing you could expect is for them to tell you the dimensions of a crimp done with an Ancor branded crimper. 
As I’ve said twice already in this thread, the dimensions of THEIR crimper is the ONLY thing I asked for and the ONLY thing I think would have been reasonable data for them to provide.

 

Gabe_nyc

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the crimper has to be calibrated to the wire and terminals being used, and recalibrated periodically if you want to maintain mil spec crimps. If you are mixing and matching ...
I was NOT mixing and matching exactly to try to stay with components that were designed to work together.

I have worked with plenty of NIST-traceable instruments etc, but mil-spec is completely not at issue. I was just looking to make the best connection possible with the components and tools I had.

 

Gabe_nyc

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Pull testing is only one test, you really should resistance test them as well. 
It’s funny that nobody else mentioned this. I agree with you completely. It may be that in an ideal crimp deforms the wires enough that any oxidation etc is rendered moot, but I’d working with non-pristine wire and with improvised procedures, it makes a lot of sense to measure the resistance.

 

Son of Hans

Member
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San Diego
One thing I forgot to mention: the HF crimper, and any others like it, will leave two little "ears" where the two die pieces meet.  It usually makes a neater installation if you turn the terminal so that the ears are in the same plane as the lug.  Don't ask how I learned this!

 

weightless

Super Anarchist
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measure the resistance
Really? Is there a spec? Would even a POS crimp have resistance a DMM could reliably measure? Maybe a four wire / Kelvin setup with a substantial current?  Maybe ask it how pissed off it is and take a measurement of its response? :)

image.png

 

Gabe_nyc

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I used that exact tool and that exact wire, going by the number on the die.  It worked fine. Those lugs too.
So I used the tool w the #4 die and it worked great. Very easy and felt very solid.

After I finish the current project I might dissect one of them to see the cross-section but for now I’m content.

One thing I forgot to mention: the HF crimper, and any others like it, will leave two little "ears" where the two die pieces meet. 
Yes, I ran into this too. The “ears” were thin enough that I was afraid they would slice through the heatshrink.

I trimmed them with a Stanley knife and smoothed everything with an emery board and all was good.

1656F8C3-8EAD-430C-AD5F-D75590282B47.jpeg

48B28C66-6347-4D6C-B4F9-86AE9F7A3B36.jpeg

81D6323E-9901-4FD5-80CF-C961D78A0EFD.jpeg

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DDW

Super Anarchist
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Ears like that are usually a sign of overcrimp.  I believe Ancor's branded crimper (which is Chinese sourced and can be bought with a few different labels) is 4 sided, so would have no relationship to your 6 sided crimp. I do agree they should have been able to give you the spec for theirs. 

The easiest way to test resistance of a large cable connection is to run a large known current through them (let's say, from an inverter running a heater) and measure the temperature of the joint. This is a comparative measure, though with a large enough current you may be able to measure the voltage drop. 

A lot of very useful testing can be done comparatively with very little equipment. A pull test for example: crimp a 1' cable on one end with one die and the other end with another than you are comparing. Pull them apart with anything - a car with a trailer hitch for example - and see which fails. 

 
Having worked in aerospace for a while, the procedure they use is to develop a crimp schedule for each batch of terminals and batch of wire (all aerospace grade and traceable) using calibrated crimpers and pull testers. The resultant crimps are specified in the schedule to include a certain number of additional wire strands to adjust the fill to meet the required pull spec.

Then every crimp is inspected by pulling again.

The pull test confirms a solid fill, which excludes corrosive moisture and insures minimal resistance (far lower than most meters can measure)..

Yes, this takes a lot of terminals, but somebody's ass is on the line.

 

SimonGH

Member
363
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Westbrook CT
Looks great...

It's probably more solid than other crimps you have on your boat :)

I know it looks better than the one the factory did on my primary engine ground!

 

slug zitski

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A pro grade lug crimper  is expensive 

I don’t own one 

if it’s a big job , I run the cables then hire an electrician to install the lugs 

for small jobs I avoid crimp lugs and use compression lugs 

you might consider compression lugs if your project is small 

462C9C93-F3AE-410F-A6E9-7026B39E3DA5.png

 

Gabe_nyc

Member
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Bayside
I heard from Ancor Tech Support (less than 24 hrs). Their dimensions for the flat to flat crimp of 6 AWG lug is .245” +/-.005.

[SIZE=14.666666984558105px]I measured mine at .230.”[/SIZE]

[SIZE=14.666666984558105px]Next time I will leave out the final squeeze, but I am happy with how it turned out. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=14.666666984558105px]It may not be mil-spec, and might not be suitable for starting 800 hp diesels, but I think that it will work fine for me, and that it will be at least as reliable as what was there before (right side of the picture). [/SIZE]

[SIZE=14.666666984558105px](Yes, I used heat shrink on all joints - this one is bare because I intend to slice it off and see what a cross-section looks like.)[/SIZE]

130E48B4-2740-413E-B66B-F00473EB2C39.jpeg

 
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slug zitski

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So I used the tool w the #4 die and it worked great. Very easy and felt very solid.

After I finish the current project I might dissect one of them to see the cross-section but for now I’m content.

Yes, I ran into this too. The “ears” were thin enough that I was afraid they would slice through the heatshrink.

I trimmed them with a Stanley knife and smoothed everything with an emery board and all was good.

View attachment 451739

View attachment 451740

View attachment 451741

View attachment 451742
Wrong size crimp die

your lug will probably work 

if a contractor performed those terminations he wouldn’t get paid 

6145EC72-DC9E-4964-B16D-A38116ECE1D0.jpeg

 

SimonGH

Member
363
74
Westbrook CT
What is this for anyway?

On second look it probably is a bit over-crimped, but your destructive test looks very solid.  

perhaps a #2 vs a #4 would have been a little less heavily crimped, but depending on your application it will likely outlast many other things

 

Gabe_nyc

Member
264
22
Bayside
What is this for anyway?

[ ... ]

depending on your application it will likely outlast many other things
For connection of house battery to house panel. There is no equipment on the boat other than UHF, new Raymarine nav and lighting.

The run is about 18 ft long on a 30-ft boat. I followed the run of the previous cable. I might re-route it in the winter to shorten it, but it would not be a significant gain and prob not worth the hassle.

I don’t know if it meets ABYC standards and I don’t know where it ranks on a scale of 1-100, but I am certain that it’s a significant improvement over what was there before.

I asked / post on here because I am looking to learn. Many answers were very helpful, others ... less so.

I might make up some more test pieces next week and I will post any results here for anybody who is interested.

Happy Sailing and Happy Anarchy!

 
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Gabe_nyc

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if a contractor performed those terminations he wouldn’t get paid 
If a contractor asked for answers to simple questions on a public forum, I probably would not hire him to begin with.

So it’s a good thing that I have a real job and that this is just a simple-hobby for me :)-)

Happy Sailing and Happy Anarchy!

 
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