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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I too am making my own speaker cables using some hefty monster cables and these monster banana plug "quick connects":

http://www.monstercable.com/images_d..._banana_tn.jpg


The quick connects dont need any soldering, you simply fan out the copper wires and then screw the cap on to lock in place. Making my own custom length monster speaker cables is easy... But I'm also using some binding post jacks in wall plates like this:

http://www.cablestogo.com/assets/pro...ages/37080.jpg


On the back side of this wall plate, there are 4 small square holes into which you insert the in-wall speaker wire and then tighten it down with a small set-screw on the side.


My question is: Would you necessarily recommend soldering the end of the "in-wall" speaker wire before inserting it into the backside of the wall plate?


The only thing soldering would do, in my opinion, is simply keep the end of the wire from fraying... but would it necessarily give me a better connection?


Because the wire is already coated with plastic insulation, obviously I'd be using a cheap/inexpensive solder with a soldering iron... it'd be great to use a torch and real silver solder, but that kind of heat would obviously burn and melt the wire insulation.


So, should I just leave the stripped copper end alone?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
One other question... we all know that copper will eventually oxidize and potentially degrade the signal... I've got plenty of excess wire behind the wall.


How often, if at all, would you recommend cutting the wire, stripping a clean fresh exposed end to insert into the back of the wall plate? Once a year? Once every few years? Never and dont worry about it?
 

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Quote:
should I just leave the stripped copper end alone?
yes

Quote:
we all know that copper will eventually oxidize and potentially degrade the signal
If your connections are done properly, then there will be no corrosion at the contact point...the only point where it matters. The only way a corroded conductor can affect the sound is if the corrosion is in the circuit.
 

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The above post is right, however you can get De-ox compound at your local home improvement store for about 2 bucks. This reduces corrosion quite a bit. You will have more of a problem with a loose connection than a dirty one.
 

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keep the wire as is -- when you add solder to a wire (called tinning a wire), you will make it stiff and brittle, the screws are designed to crimp the wire which they will not be able to do properly if you use solder.
 

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You might solder, but if and only if
  • the Decora insert is metal (or you'll melt it)
  • you set the setscrew first and never plan to use the connector for different cable
  • the connector isn't soldered to the PCB.

I think the last one is the killer. Just crank down the setscrew.
 

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DMF, he was talking about tinning the speaker wire, not soldering it to the connection.


Mark, it’s no problem to use the set screws without tinning the wire. The only thing is they tend to get a smidge loose over time – not sure why, but it seems to have something to do with crushing down the stranded wire. It probably won’t be a problem in a static installation, but you might check them say, 6 months later. I’ll bet you’ll find the screw will tighten up another quarter turn or so.


Nevertheless, there seems to be some confusion here about soldering:
Quote:
Because the wire is already coated with plastic insulation, obviously I'd be using a cheap/inexpensive solder with a soldering iron... it'd be great to use a torch and real silver solder, but that kind of heat would obviously burn and melt the wire insulation.
You can’t solder plastic - you have to strip the insulation off the wire before you solder.


Also:
  • Torches are for soldering heavy-gauge wire, like battery cables.
  • A $50 35-40 watt soldering will do the job for most anything you want, up to 12 ga. wire.
  • I don’t know many people using silver solder.

Regards,

Wayne A. Pflughaupt
 

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Sorry, my bad.


When I tin stranded for a compression connector, I only do the very tip so the connector will catch the untinned part. This one looks too shallow to do that.
 
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