Author Topic: The correct and best way to install spades  (Read 2734 times)

Offline flatlander

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The correct and best way to install spades
« on: May 24, 2009, 07:45:31 PM »
I would like advise and maybe pictures of the correct and best way to add spades to a line cord. I have tried several times I get some of them to work great and then some to not work or easily pull apart. Could some of you pros show me the best way. Thanks
« Last Edit: May 24, 2009, 09:26:44 PM by flatlander »

Offline benhutcherson

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2009, 09:41:06 PM »
Here's what I do:

1. Lay wire in trough of spade
2. Using needle nosed pliers, bend the center finger over just enough to hold the wire in place
3. Then, bend the two outer ones over
4. Using the wide area at the base of the needle nosed pliers, crimp the fingers as far as they will go.

I have about a 98% success rate using this technique. The ones that don't work initially will almost always work after being tightened down further.

Offline bingster

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2009, 09:42:59 PM »
I'll jump in, since at the moment I happen to have a couple mounting cords that have missing spades at the wall end.  I'm sure everybody who does this has his own way of going about it, but here's what I do.

First thing is that you have some sort of crimper.  I happened to find an ancient one on ebay that's perfect for the job.  You don't absolutely have to have one, but a crimper will make the going much easier, and give better results than pliers will.  Dan/Panther made a nifty crimper by drilling a hole through a pair of needle-nosed pliers.




The method of preparing the conductors depends on the kind of spades you have.  If your spades have little barbs in the bottom of the ferrule portion, you'll want to cut the conductors cleanly.  If your spades don't have barbs, you'll want to strip 1/4" or so from each conductor so that you can fold the bare copper under the end of the conductor before crimping.



I take the conductor and push it down on the barbs with my thumbnail, making sure the barbs are centered under the conductor, and so will make contact with the copper inside.  This also helps hold the spade on the end of the conductor before being crimped:




I then take the crimper and crimp the spade only partially, and then remove it.  I make sure the conductor is still at the bottom of the ferrule, so that the final crimp doesn't slice through the conductor's jacket.  I either use my thumbnail or a small flat-blade screwdriver to push it all the way down. 




Once I'm sure the conductor is pushed all the way onto the barbs, and won't get cut by the "fingers" of the spade, I put the lug back in the crimper, and finish the job.




If your crimps sometimes don't hold, it may not be anything you're doing wrong.  Spade lugs come in different sizes, and it may be that the ferrule ends of your spades are too big for the size of the conductor. 
= DARRIN =



Offline flatlander

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2009, 11:35:05 PM »
The posts we very helpful, Thank you for the pictures.

Offline Dan/Panther

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2009, 01:58:47 AM »
I had this pair of needle nose with one damaged tong, so I cut it short, and drilled the hole as shown.
It work nicely, but a professional made pair like Bingsters is the way to go, if you can find them.
The ones I made, work about 80% of the time, 20% I have to recrimp a new connector.
D/P

The More People I meet, The More I Love, and MISS My Dog.  Dan Robinson

Offline Dennis Markham

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2009, 08:00:14 AM »
Bingster, where does one get those spades?

Offline rp2813

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2009, 10:41:51 AM »
Thanks for asking that question Dennis.  I have been wondering where to find spades too.  I have some compromised ones on a 1960 handset cord and would like to be able to remedy that problem.

Ralph
Ralph

Offline benhutcherson

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2009, 11:31:31 AM »
Radio Shack sells spades, just not as nice or as original looking as the ones Bingster has

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2103504

My local RS always has these in stock, and trust me I go through a lot of them.

Offline Dennis Markham

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2009, 11:46:24 AM »
Ben, those are the ones I've been using too.  But I'd love to get some of the other kind that bite through the insulation.  That crimping tool would be a nice addition to the work bench too.

Offline Dan/Panther

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2009, 03:10:14 PM »
Like Ben I use the Radio Shack connectors, they aren't rounded like the ones Bingster has, I think Oldphoneworks sells that type, but they go for 25 cents each, whereas the RS go for 8 cents each.
If crimped properly they look decent, and they also have the barb that punchures the insulation.
D/P

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Offline Dan/Panther

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2009, 03:14:54 PM »
Here's a photo of the rounded side so you can see they look decent.
You can barely see the barb in the second photo.
D/P
« Last Edit: May 25, 2009, 03:23:21 PM by Dan/Panther »

The More People I meet, The More I Love, and MISS My Dog.  Dan Robinson

Offline bingster

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2009, 04:17:16 PM »
Bingster, where does one get those spades?

The spades I use are all reclaimed from old cords that are damaged to the point of being unusable.  I pry them open and reuse them.  I think OPW sells the barbed ones in bulk now like HOT used to, and in two different sizes. They're much cheaper than 25 in their bulk lot.  I'm thinking about trying them out because I have only a few used ones left.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2009, 04:20:32 PM by bingster »
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Offline Dennis Markham

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Re: The correct and best way to install spades
« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2009, 11:16:54 PM »
Thanks for that info.  I guess I didn't think to look on OPW.