Disconnect Terminal/Crimp Connector FAIL! Should I re-crimp? Should I just solder? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 12 Old 06-02-2020, 06:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Disconnect Terminal/Crimp Connector FAIL! Should I re-crimp? Should I just solder?

Hi, everyone

On account of removing the mid/bass driver in my B&W 686 to figure out an issue that turned out to be tinsel slap, I came across a different problem.

The disconnect terminals/crimp connectors (used inside the speaker to connect the wires from the crossover to the driver) are failing quite catastrophically: in one speaker, the connection had absolutely no friction, and the connector was bent wide open. I guess it *was* making contact, so I had sound coming out of the speaker, but was lucky it hasn't been moved in a long while. On the other unit, I had the same, just not as bent-out-of-shape.

Inspecting both of these connectors and trying to "close" them a bit by hand, at the slightest pressure, made the things break. Photos attached.

Is this normal? I'm now thinking of examining my remaining B&W speakers to check for the same problem.

The real question though is about the best way to go about repairing the issue.

Should I:

a) Find replacement crimp-on disconnect terminals? If so, should I be on the lookout for any specific type/material? What about the crimping tool?

b) Forget the crimping and just solder the wires directly to the speaker terminals. Again, if going this route, what should I lookout for?

Thanks in advance for your inputs!
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post #2 of 12 Old 06-02-2020, 12:50 PM
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If you haven't removed them I'd solder the wire to the existing disconnect terminals. Should be able to place the connector on your soldering iron and let the solder flow right into the crimp connection.
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post #3 of 12 Old 06-03-2020, 03:52 AM
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Personally I would crimp, but I have a variety of terminals on hand and a crimping tool. If you’re going to solder, make sure your iron is strong enough “get in and get out.” Remember that those terminals in the speaker are connected directy to the voice coil. A low-powered iron will take a long time to heat the terminal, and could fry the voice coil. So make sure your iron is at least on the 30-40 watt range.

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post #4 of 12 Old 06-03-2020, 05:11 AM
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I'm with Wayne - I'd actually just recrimp it, myself. I think by the time your iron heats up the crimp enough to avoid a cold solder joint, you'll have fried or melted something. Those crimps have a decent amount of mass and are going to take a while to heat up. It should be fine, but there is just a bigger chance for something to go pretty badly, so why bother?

The crimp tool shouldn't be hard. Those 'quick connects' generally come in either 1/4" or 3/16" size, with the 1/4" being much more common. I'd look on amazon for a half decent rated variety kit that comes with a crimper. You don't need anything fancy with dies or anything - just the normal hand crimper with the red/blue/yellow dots at the top. They are nice to have around for any automotive work, as well. Just don't use them with solid wiring like your house wiring - they won't hold securely.
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post #5 of 12 Old 06-03-2020, 07:05 AM
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Another +1 for Waynes suggestion of crimping...
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post #6 of 12 Old 06-03-2020, 10:45 AM
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Just so there is no confusion I'm not recommending soldering to the drivers themselves (I'd never recommend that) but soldering the existing disconnect terminals to the wires. This way you can use the tools you have without buying new disconnects or the proper crimping tool.
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post #7 of 12 Old 06-03-2020, 12:40 PM
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I like buying tools, then I have them for next time. I work at a computer terminal but use tools all the time. Something like this from HD is a very nice crimper, about as good as you can get on the consumer level and will do the job right. It is way better than these also from HD which do a marginal job, sometimes inadequate. I have used both on many occasions.

Both of these are for insulated terminals, not bare terminals like in the pic you posted which hold both the wire and insulation. That is far better in a situation like inside an enclosure where you do not require insulated terminals.

Here is a decent kit from Amazon for bare terminals, not too expensive either. This is what I will recommend.

Good crimper for insulated terminals


Not so good crimper for insulated terminals - the nice thin about these is the screw cutter that I use fairly often


Good crimper for bare terminals like you currently have - capable of professional results
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post #8 of 12 Old 06-03-2020, 04:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtg90 View Post
Just so there is no confusion I'm not recommending soldering to the drivers themselves (I'd never recommend that) but soldering the existing disconnect terminals to the wires. This way you can use the tools you have without buying new disconnects or the proper crimping tool.
Crimp terminals are not designed for soldering. That's a pointless exercise - it'll get you nothing that crimping won't do faster and easier, with the proper tool.

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post #9 of 12 Old 06-03-2020, 06:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne A. Pflughaupt View Post
Crimp terminals are not designed for soldering. That's a pointless exercise - it'll get you nothing that crimping won't do faster and easier, with the proper tool.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
That is the point, the OP does not have the proper tool and disconnects on hand if he did this thread would not exist. I'm also not saying soldering is better then using the proper crimp terminals and tool. I'm just proposing a quick simple solution that uses what tools he has on hand at no cost and will provide a secure connection that is unlikely to fail in the future.
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post #10 of 12 Old 06-07-2020, 03:38 PM
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Ummm, it appears to me the problem is not the connection between the wire and the Faston terminal but the terminal itself is broken. I think the OP needs to replace all of the Faston connectors in his speakers as it seems obvious to me that the manufacturer used a brittle, inferior terminal. I have never seen a failure like that when the appropriate female connector is pushed on to an appropriately sized male connector. As to what to look for, I would try to find Faston terminals from a reputable online supplier that cares about your return business. McMaster-Carr has a good selection of quick-disconnect terminals. I prefer to use noninsulated terminals and like to add two layers of heat shrink tubing over the connector. The first layer covers the wire connection and the second layer is shorter, but covers the female portion of the connector.

Here is a picture of something similar:


Mike
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post #11 of 12 Old 06-07-2020, 08:21 PM
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Buy/borrow a crimp tool, buy the 2$ pack of 6 terminals and crimp them and be done.

Blasting brown notes for 20 years and counting!
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post #12 of 12 Old 06-07-2020, 09:01 PM
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LOL I can't believe I misinterpreted how those connectors failed, even with the photos showing the breakage!
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