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Thread: Heat Shrink

  1. #1
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    Heat Shrink

    Gonna be doing some wiring on my guitar.
    I'll be using 22 awg Cloth push back wire.
    What size shrink tube do I need?
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Old Timer Tom Phillips's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paully1 View Post
    ...What size shrink tube do I need?...
    Usually none. Tell us why you think you need heat shrink.

  3. #3
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    I was going to post something similar, but I thought I was better off not saying anything.

    There is a school of thought among amp builders in which the ends of every wire get a little bit of HST to cover the end of the wire sheath and the solder connection, as if they're putting on a sock as a dress-up measure.

    I think that the practice started among new amp builders who ended up overheating their PVC wires and giving them nasty burn marks and created embarrassingly melted ends when soldering. I remember that years ago one fellow developed a novel solution to hiding his mistakes by sliding a small segment of HST up the wire prior to soldering. Then after he scorched black the ends of his PVC or his cloth wire, he'd slide the HST down over the solder joint to cover his mistake. He posted a bunch of photos of his amp build on one of the sites (amp garage?) and his build had these little HST socks everywhere. He must have had a hundred little socks on all of the connections.

    When I saw those photos I knew exactly what was going on -- somebody was trying to hide bad soldering technique by putting little condoms everywhere. It must have added a huge amount of time to the project. Although I saw it as a cover up solution to Band-Aid his bad soldering technique, the HST sock method was rapidly accepted by a large number of people. I guess lots of people have the problem of overheating their wires when soldering, and wanting to cover up the ugly remnants of the soldering process when they take pictures of their amp to show off online.

    Some people use Teflon wire to avoid the overheated insulation problem. Some just put HST over PVC and cloth wire. I prefer to just turn down the temp control on my soldering station. To me, the HST seems to be a hobbyist dress-up thing. I can't imagine any commercial builder wasting time like that.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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    The reason I'm thinking S.T. is that I have a couple of pick ups that only have approx. 1" of original lead.
    I want to extend the leads to a functional length and S.T. the splices.
    Thanks
    Chuck H likes this.

  5. #5
    Supporting Member Chuck H's Avatar
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    That's one of only a few things I use hst for. But there ARE a few. Another is when a layout benefits from having a component lead as the only lead, but it's a high voltage connection. Yet another is when I'm making shielded cable leads. The exposed shield is often a very fine stranded copper and it's near impossible to have no strays when stripping. So in that regard it's cosmetic, but OTOH it also gives me peace of mind knowing that after some amount of vibration there's still no chance that a hair thin copper element will find it's way into contact with anything else. So I'm surprised that you had to defend your position since hst is a pretty regular part of everyone's arsenal.

    As to size... I dunno.?. I just get the stuff when I need it and eyeball the size based on how much I expect it to shrink. You could do the same. Radio Shack is kaput now I think, but there's still Fry's. You wouldn't want to order only one piece of hst anyway, so buy a "kit" and have it in your arsenal for many projects. It's good for more than electronics to be sure.
    "The man is an incompetent waste of human flesh. He should donate his organs now to someone who might actually make good use of them." The Dude re: maybe I shouldn't say, but his name rhymes with Trump

    "...less ear-friendly but handy for jazz." Leo_Gnardo

  6. #6
    Senior Member Enzo's Avatar
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    Typical shrink is to half diameter. I just look in my shrink tube bin and select tube that slips over the joint it protects. it will then shrink around it with no saggy spots.

    I sometimes use it as spaghetti on bare wires that cross, but largely I leave it for things outside an amp. Inside I do like it on the unterminated end of shielded cable. For similar reasons to Chuck's - stray ends.
    Education is what you're left with after you have forgotten what you have learned.

  7. #7
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Spaghetti. You are an old timer.

    When I have a lead that I need to insulate (like chuck mentioned) I'll make my own spaghetti by using a wire stripper to pull a section of nice thick PVC off of an insulated wire, and slip that over the lead. That ends up being a lot thicker and more durable than HST. FWIW, I have an ancient one of those "Ideal" spring loaded wire stripper guns, where it grabs the wire, a blade comes down to make a cut, and another arm then grabs the insulator and pulls it off. Those strippers cut really nice spaghetti substitutes.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

  8. #8
    Senior Member Enzo's Avatar
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    That is usually what I do, but once in a while I use shrink tube for one reason or another. My Paladin stripper does a good job of it.
    Education is what you're left with after you have forgotten what you have learned.

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