Crimping cable seems like an easy task. All you need is a battery cable, a connector, and a crimping tool. Apply pressure and you’ve just created a perfectly crimped battery cable.
However, if you’ve ever tried to crimp cable yourself, then you know that it’s not always that easy. Today, we’re going to explain the nuances of crimping cable in order to ensure your job site is as safe and efficient as possible.
–Match the gauge of the connector to the gauge of t
he cable. This is easy because cables are imprinted with color coding, stamps, or gauge signs. This is the first and most important part of crimping cable.
–Cut the cable cleanly using a sharp cutter to make sure the end is flush. You can use any small cutter for 2 watt cable and lower, although larger cables may require heavier tools to ensure a clean cut, like this Ram Products Heavy Duty Cable Cutter that can cut up to 250 MCM copper.
–Take the time to strip the cable to the correct length. If you don’t leave enough exposed cable, you could have a weak connection. Leaving too much cable, on the other hand, will leave too much wire exposed. Measure the connector over the cable and strip the cable to the correct length.
–Get all the strands of the cable in the crimp. Don’t be lazy when crimping. Take the time to make sure all the strands of the cable have been squeezed into the connector.
-You’re now ready to begin crimping. All crimpers, including this one offered by Ram Products, have rotatable crimping dies. Set these crimping dies to match the style and gauge of the cable and connector.
-When crimping, make sure the crimping tool fully closes or completes a full cycle. If you don’t do this, then you’ll have a weak crimp.
-If using heat shrink tubing, be sure to apply the heat shrink evenly using a flameless torch.
-Test the crimp and try to pull the crimp apart to ensure the connection is strong. If your crimp doesn’t survive a light pull test then it’s not nearly strong enough.
Make sure you’re crimping cables properly by purchasing the following tools from Ram Products:
–Crimp Battery Terminals: Ram Products carries a wide range of terminals.
–Heavy Duty Cable Cutter: Cut soft copper cable up to 250MCM (6/0 gauge) with our Heavy Duty 22 Inch Cable Cutter.
–Heavy Duty Crimp Tool – 26”: Crimp cable of any gauge from 8 through 4/0 with this heavy duty crimp tool. The rotatable, color coded dies make it easy to find the proper crimp setting and the comfortable hand grips make the process as easy as possible.
–Cold Shrink Tape: This tape can be applied if you forgot to apply heat shrink prior to crimping (it happens to the best of us).
Crimping is a relatively basic task. However, that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for improvement. If you want to make every crimp as strong as possible (and you should), then start following the above guidelines today.