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Author Topic: Now I'm converted! Wire wrapping anyone else?  (Read 2287 times)
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So I've known the wire wrapping technique since CrossRoads showed his work some weeks ago. I even went as far as watching a youtube video on how to use wire wrapping but stopped right there. It only took the right challenge to me to actually go to RadioShack (sorry anti-RS fellows, there's no other place I could go to get the kit at 5pm). Spent my $12 for a wire wrapper and one tiny poll of wire and started doing wire wrapping instead of soldering and jump wiring.



I have to admit it's easy and the wires are flexible and I don't have to heat up a soldering iron or smoke the fume. It saves space too.

Got two questions for the pros:

1) Is it ok to wrap multiple wires on the same post?
2) Does your wire break out as you twist the tool? I did that often, probably because the kink I caused when stripping insulation. How do you do it without making the kink?

Thanks for the posts and pictures, CrossRoads  smiley-wink
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Depending on the length of your pins, you can get many wires on the same pin. You need about 5 wraps per wire, just keep your insulation out of the way as you start the wire. Longer pins support 5 wires easy, like when making a star distribution of +5 & Gnd
Wire should  not break as  you wrap. My wrapper has the stripper right in the middle of the tool. Slide the wire thru a little, push down onto the stripper,  pull it and slide into the wrapping slot.
Gets easier with practice and you work out your technique.
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Thanks CrossRoads.

My problem was that when I press down the wire into the blades of the stripper, I kink the wires at my finger tip (thumb + index finger pinch the wire on both ends). I'll practice more smiley

Some years ago, driven by the price, I bought two sets of ECE 2xxx class lab kits (99c compared with original $18 price tag, after the semester was over). I just came to realize that the sockets are wire wrapping sockets with very long legs. I think I might have saved some money on those sockets. For me, wire wrapping solves my problem of having several PCBs with parts on each one and not able to interconnect those PCBs with a temporary but reliable way for prototyping. Once I test the prototype to work find, I tend to whip out a PCB that includes all necessary components on one board to avoid having to wire wrap too much smiley

The box pictured is my LED ammeter project I asked for advice a week ago. It will show the flow of current with LEDs "flowing along the direction of current". The flow speed is proportional to current (voltage dropped on the shunt resistor). It's for kids learning electricity. If they see this just like some simulations (wires have charges drawn on them and move), they could have a better grasp of current, invisible stuff. The whole project would fit in the box if I stuff the RBBB but that won't be pretty. I'll go for a PCB solution.
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When I was doing wirewrap in the 70s as field service engineer we used wire wrapper tool that allowed what was called 'modified wire wrap' where the tool would except the diameter of the insulation so that the first turn or so onto the post was insulated while the remaining turns were from the stripped wire. This allowed a somewhat stronger mechanical connection and less likely to break at start of the stripped portion of the wire.

See figure 2 of this link:  http://www.tessco.com/yts/resourcecenter/pdfs/wirewrap.pdf

It's very important to learn to strip the insulation from the wire without nicking the wire itself. It takes practice and the most important tool I was given was a purpose designed wire wrap stripper that worked only on that size wire but would strip with no nicking of the wire. Worth it's weight in gold in my experience.

My biggest problem learning to wire wrap was due to being left-handed I tended to wrap the wire in the wrong direction. It still worked but manual 'unwrap' tools would then not be able to unwrap one of my wraps LOL.
Later I got a electric handheld wrapper tool that solved that problem.  smiley-wink
« Last Edit: June 03, 2011, 11:30:20 am by retrolefty » Logged

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Lefty,

Thanks for the reply. My tool can do a little bit of modified wrapping. I'll keep practicing.
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I have a bunch of wire wrap stuff (including wire), occasionally used it but mostly just use the wire for point-point soldering.  It saves on sockets for trivial/inexpensive devices (like CD4094's) while simultaneously making point-point wiring practical on a board with 0.1" spacing.  1/2 watt resistor leads can be wire-wrapped if you're careful, solder through board and leave 1/2" or so sticking out for wrapping.  Definitely good for making prototypes quickly using through-hole with 0.1" spacing if you've got pins and/or sockets.  Or you can cheat and use breakouts with long pins.  Smaller than 0.1" spacing, the wire wrap tool probably won't fit, but the wire itself is still good for point-point (soldered).

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The goal in a "good" strip is always to nick the insulation almost to the wire, and then break the last little bit by pulling,  so you don't nick the wire.

This is especially hard with WW wire,  because both the wire and the insulation are so thin,  reducing your margin of error to near-zero.  So you need a stripper that's really precisely made,  and you may,  or may not,  get lucky when you buy a cheapie like the RS tool.

When I was doing more WW work years ago,  I bought an OK ST-400 (the predecessor to this guy),  which has a knob to screw-adjust the separation of the blades.  I also has a hopelessly-inaccurate scale that claims to tell you what wire size it's set for,  but is really only good for giving you a rough relative idea of how far apart the blades are.

One trick to help reduce kinking is to use your bent-needle-nose pliers to slide the wire into the stripper.  The bent nose means you can grip the wire a tiny fraction of a millimeter from the blades,  keeping the wire almost perfectly perpendicular to them.  It's a little bit more work,  but it produces a huge reduction in problems.

Spending a little extra on wire may help,  too:  my "eclectic" collection of mostly surplus-purchased WW wire has significant variations in wire and insulation thicknesses.  A stripper that's perfectly adjusted for one batch can either fail to strip,  or badly nick,  wire from a different lot.  I try to use multiple colors when I'm wire-wrapping or using WW wire on proto PCBs,  but it occasionally bites me when the "right" color is a slightly-different diameter.

Has anyone tried using a thermal stripper on WW wire?  I'm thinking that might help,  but could also wind up leaving melted insulation stuck to the wire that would lead to bad joints.  Insulation residue isn't such a problem when you're soldering,  but wire-wrapping doesn't include heat and rosin to clean it off.
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I haven't wire wrapped anything since the days of setting jumpers on a DLV-11 asynch mux card. I do like the idea though. But I just looked into wire wrap tools. I can understand high prices on the electric ones, but $92 for a simple manual model?

Obviously, something here I don't understand.
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You're not looking at the right thing.
WSU-30, has stripper built into the middle of the handle. Its what I have used for 25+ years,
30 guage wire & 0.025" square pins.
LEDs even!

http://www.web-tronics.com/wrto30awgw.html

http://www.mouser.com/Search/Refine.aspx?Keyword=801-WSU-30

http://www.alliedelec.com/Search/ProductDetail.aspx?SKU=8271430

http://www.specialized.net/Specialized/OK-Industries-WSU30-WrapStripUnwrap-Tool-30AWG-Standard-Wrap-1471.aspx

http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?site=us&lang=en&keywords=wsu%2030&WT.term=WSU+30&WT.mc_id=Tools&WT.medium=cpc&WT.campaign=Tools&WT.content=text&WT.srch=1&WT.source=google

http://www.newark.com/jsp/displayProduct.jsp?sku=10F7536&CMP=KNC-G-SKU-Ok


« Last Edit: July 13, 2011, 08:38:19 pm by CrossRoads » Logged

Designing & building electrical circuits for over 25 years. Check out the ATMega1284P based Bobuino and other '328P & '1284P creations & offerings at  www.crossroadsfencing.com/BobuinoRev17.
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You're not looking at the right thing.

Well, I was too!  smiley-razz I just pasted the wrong URL.
* justjed kicks klipper in the shin
OK INDUSTRIES Manual Wire Wrap Tool, 22-24 AWG

But I like your links better. smiley

Every time I see a discussion about wire-wrap, I want to build something using tubes [err ... valves for you left-pondians].
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Ok,22-24 guage is overkill for digital circuits.
Go with 30 guage and the WSU-30.

I've got a pile of parts to make a guitar tube amp from scratch - rectifier tube EL34 power tubes, pre-amp tubes, box for a chassis, big toroidal transformer for power and a really nice output transformer for driving speakers.  Also a bunch of caps & resisters.  And high voltage insulated wire.  Just need to get around to ordering sockets & start drilling holes ...
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Years ago, I bought a Supro Spectator at a "pre" garage sale. Was working for a plumber, doing a repair, when the nice lady said, "I'm having a garage sale next weekend. If you're interested, all the stuff is over there in the corner". So I dug around, and there it was. I paid something like $20 for it.

Wound up selling it a few years ago. Nice ROI, but hated to do it. But I do have a schematic.
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Is that one of these (see 3rd reply)
http://www.ax84.com/bbs/dm.php?thread=434791

I have a Stromberg-Carlson that my brothers & I carried home from the town dump way back in high school. Dual 6L6 push-pull output. Supposedly is only 50W, thing is way louder than my 450W Berhringer Bass Amp and doesn't make the speakers seem like they clip when a low G is played suddenly. I want to build something like that with these other parts.
http://crossroadsfencing.com/stromberg_au-36.pdf Mine is a B, don't recall what is different, someplace I have a picture of the schematic that's in the bottom
I built a High Octane kit from ax84.com before I started arduino-ing.
Just not enough time in a week to do all the electronics I want, and fence too.  Darn day job gets in the way!
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Is that one of these (see 3rd reply)
http://www.ax84.com/bbs/dm.php?thread=434791

I have a Stromberg-Carlson that my brothers & I carried home from the town dump way back in high school. Dual 6L6 push-pull output. Supposedly is only 50W, thing is way louder than my 450W Berhringer Bass Amp and doesn't make the speakers seem like they clip when a low G is played suddenly. I want to build something like that with these other parts.
http://crossroadsfencing.com/stromberg_au-36.pdf Mine is a B, don't recall what is different, someplace I have a picture of the schematic that's in the bottom
I built a High Octane kit from ax84.com before I started arduino-ing.
Just not enough time in a week to do all the electronics I want, and fence too.  Darn day job gets in the way!

Yeah, though I don't recall the year of mfr.




Funny thing about watts. A while back, I was in band for a bit (lead vocals, classic rock). Lead guitar player used a Marshall stack. Very loud for the given wattage. I had a 200W Hafler amp to run the PA, and this guy says it's a stronger amp than, e.g., Peavey, because Hafler is pretty conservative in their ratings.

Anyways, that, or something much like it (electronically, not cosmetically) is on my project list, though I seem to never get to much of that stuff. Don't know much about tubes either. Used to read stuff in audiophile rags about triode vs. pentode operation, etc.

I like the looks of that Stromberg-Carlson.
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Mine isn't quite that pretty, mixed collection of knobs now and the cover is banged up & needs painting.

Here it is on top the Behringer 450W combo that I just as a cabinet now, with a Schecter 6-string, my Kramer bass not where I thought it was.
And my Hi-Octane amp in front of the cabinet I made. Have some cherry trim for the edges I'll get added eventually.
The Blackstar amp is a  hybrid amp, pre-gain & output are tubes, 12AX7 and EL84 single ended output (something like that), got it on sale whem Music123 had some 50% off lunchtime only sale before Thanksgiving one year.  Liked the sound so much, I built the Hi-Octane after that to have an all-tube sound.
In front are the the transformers for the EL34 (like 6L6) pushpull tube amp I want to make (like the Stromberg Carlson, but only 1 output drive stage instead of 2 - or make it switchable or something, or with different gain stages or something).
Maybe get a uController in there somehow too smiley-wink



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Designing & building electrical circuits for over 25 years. Check out the ATMega1284P based Bobuino and other '328P & '1284P creations & offerings at  www.crossroadsfencing.com/BobuinoRev17.
Arduino for Teens available at Amazon.com.

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