Spade terminals

Discussion in 'Electrical Systems' started by fallguy, Feb 26, 2022.

  1. missinginaction
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    missinginaction Senior Member

    Fallguy, I think you worry too much. These connectors, called "quick disconnects" have been around forever. I'm starting to push 70 years old. I've owned boats of one type or another since I was 23. Near as I can remember they ALL used them. I've never had any failures. Ever. They'll still be in use on millions of boats long after my ashes are residing in Davy Jones Locker.
     
  2. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    no, these things are barely on

    I think rx is onto something as there is no clicking or any catch happening. Due to the demands of the wiring; there are double spades? On there as well, and the system is just poor. Also has a diode welded on. I could have used two spots on my digital board; one for nav and one for anchor, but never figured I'd end up working hard for something so cheesy.

    I think there might be a 2# pull requirement and honestly doubt it'd pass.

    Who wants to lose nav lights to a boat wake?
     
  3. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    I have a feeling the problem is perhaps that I don't have good female sides and had to solder in a diode and there is not good engagement. I'm gonna mess with it more I guess.

    Still say they should be banned.

    I have some double spades. I think it'd be better to run two wires off of a single spade as well.
     
  4. rxcomposite
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    rxcomposite Senior Member

    Maybe what you have is connector incompatibility. Seems your spade has a dimple in it. Here is what I have. Brass ones from China, tinned one from the US. Both have dimples on the female connector and holes on the spade lug. Connectors.jpg
     
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  5. BlueBell
    Joined: May 2017
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    BlueBell . . . . .

    New World problems.

    Your Experience
    So, you're stuck with the spade connector on the switch and you're worried it's going to fall off at the most inopportune time.

    Possible Solution
    You could solder the wire (or female spade) to the male spade on the switch.

    My Experience
    I have encountered loose spade connectors, crimped them gently, and they're good.
    But I'm also much more fastidious about routing and anchoring wires so nothing is loose to vibrate or bounce around under extreme circumstances.

    I hope you can resolve your worry.
     
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  6. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    Soldering risks the switch a bit and doesn't meet abyc anyhow.

    I am surprised there is no conductive glue.

    But unless anyone has used it; please no googles.
     
  7. Tops
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    Tops Senior Member

    Fallguy, I feel your pain. I struggled to get some no-name quick disconnects to crimp to 12 AWG pigtails for a solar project. The 14 AWG terminals from the same batch worked just fine on generic 14/2 'boat cable'. I can't tell if it's the crimp, crimper, operator, or some sort of contamination on the stripped wire.
    Is there room to make a bar to clamp the wires about 4-6" away from the switches so there is very little 'swing' on the stretch going into the rocker switch? If you incorporated a 90 degree bend so that the wire going to the switch is held in rough position might that help?
     
  8. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    yeah, that could work...I think rx explaining there is a female side mismatch explains it all... I really think, more broadly, the industry could do better...
     
  9. Tops
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    Tops Senior Member

    Something like this (the add-on thought from above, crossed posts a bit)? tops_qc_bar.jpg
     
  10. rxcomposite
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    rxcomposite Senior Member

    Seems like you just chose the wrong type of terminal. Heavy duty types does not appear to have dimples but slots especially the 3M brands. Go to any large hardware store or automotive shop and I am sure you will find one. Heavy duty disconnect.png Heavy duty disconnebt.png
     
  11. rxcomposite
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    rxcomposite Senior Member

    Not considered good practice either. It is not used in Marine and Automotive industry. Soldering causes stress risers and causes the wire to break with vibrations.
     
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  12. BlueBell
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    BlueBell . . . . .

    Agreed 100%
    But he wants it to never fall off...
    Under any circumstances while building a better mouse-trap... I mean, connector.

    Fallguy, if you use quality, matching parts and secure your loose wiring, it won't fall off, unless it's hit by something.
    If accessibility is an issue then that's poor design.
    (Don't shoot the messenger.)
     
  13. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    There are two solutions.

    The first is to purchase all your switches with wire pigtails and install you own connector plugs to plug into your harness. This means crimping pins on the wires and assembling the connectors on the pin sets. These connectors are fairly cheap and standard, but there are literally tens of thousands of them. Allied and Deutsch are two common brands. They are used by the millions on outdoor equipment of all sorts. If you can't find pigtail switches, buy screw-ons and build your own pigtail. You can pot the screw-on connections if you need to. You usually have to buy all the connector parts separately - pins, plugs, sockets, and often locking wedges. So there are about 20 specs on each piece that have to match up to each other and to the job.


    The second solution is to buy switches that come with their own connector plug for the back of the switch. You install the pins on your boat wire, assemble the connector onto the pin set, and plug the thing into your matching switch. The blade or pin geometry is highly standardized, but there are about a million different items out there, so it can be a huge frustration finding an odd socket and pins to match an existing plug. Grainger lists about 50,000 different switches, and I recently had to troll through them to find a part the dealer was out of. Lotsa fun, even when you sorta know your way around the business. But I'm ok paying $50-$75 for a toggle switch on a golf course sprayer truck when some of the chemicals cost $2000 per gallon.

    But like others have said, get real spade connectors that snap cleanly on and off with detents you can feel. The hole in the spade is for soldering a wire to. The female tab connector has a bump that snaps into it. Some spades don't have a hole, just a dent. You have to put the tab on the right way round on those to get the snap.
    https://www.grainger.com/product/HUBBELL-WIRING-DEVICE-KELLEMS-Marine-Lighted-Toggle-Switch-3HZ81
    https://www.amazon.com/Female-Disconnect-Marine-Grade-Adhesive/dp/B012BS51DO
     
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  14. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    One other thing. Those little one-tab-to-two-blade thingies are called piggybacks. Don't use those. Crimp two wires onto one tab connector and daisy chain as required. Takes a bit of practice to do it neatly and not take up more space than needed.
     
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  15. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    Yeah. The piggybacks are not robust at all.

    I will see if contura makes a female side,
     
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