How to make Battery Cables For Auto, Marine & Solar

How to make Battery Cables For Auto, Marine & Solar

Alright, today on Repairs101 I�m going to
show you how to make battery cables for your boat, car, truck, motorcycle, snowmobile,
ATV, lawn mower, generator or hovercraft (or solar collector).
I find a lot of people are prepared to blame their battery when their machines won�t
start but often it�s just another symptom of a much bigger problem. If you see mismatched
cables, broken and / or corroded connections, temporary terminal clamps used permanently,
wrong size terminal connections or wire cut down to fit. Yeah, it�s time to make new
cables. Collect all the gear you�ll need to change
everything that is at all questionable. If you use battery terminal clamps you can get
this type that comes pre-loaded with solder and flux. I find them difficult to crimp neatly
and I prefer battery terminals to be crimped and soldered.
These adapters are used when your cables don�t match your battery. Make sure you have both
a positive and a negative. This style of clamp should be looked at as
a temporary solution only. If you need to parallel a ground, this is
the fitting you want. Make sure you have the same gauge of terminals
and cable. Tinned boat cable can last up to ten times
longer than ordinary welding cable. It�s normal to cut through a few strands of wire,
just pluck them out before you add the flux paste.
Chewing through the cable like this makes the end a mess that�s difficult to work
with. The solder and flux used for copper pipes
and / or sheet metal work is much too corrosive for wire. Be sure and put some paste in the
fitting and some shrink tube on the cable before you crimp it. Use a crimping tool or
a swager if you can get your hands on one � otherwise a flat nail-punch and an angle
iron or an aluminium ninety will do the trick nicely.
Normally you would use your vise to hold this while applying heat but my vise is in the
wood-shop where I don�t use torches. I should warn you about the mess this can
create. Be sure and set up somewhere where it won�t matter.
Alright thanks for watching and don�t forget to subscribe!

78 thoughts on “How to make Battery Cables For Auto, Marine & Solar

  1. Wow great video. I wish i had this 5 years ago when i replaced the ground terminal on my Honda with one of those cheap temporary Motomaster terminals from CT thinking it was correctly done.  Definitely bookmarking This!

  2. also if you preheat the cable before putting it into the heated mess you will not get the spray effect and it will bond better, just not cool down that fast…

  3. Thanks for your tips. I made my heavy duty batt cable (2/0) for my jeep earlier. 😉

  4. You're really not supposed to solder battery terminals at all!!! the soldering creates a hard spot that cal lead to early fatigue, and solder'd terminals can fail earlier than just crimped due to resistance and overheating. check out ABYC on this. You've also stripped too much insulation. the insulation should butt up against the terminal to minimize the opportunity for corrosion.

  5. Put a dab of silicone sealant around your exposed wire before applying heat shrink, shrink the outside perimeter first and allow sealant to "bulb" under the heat shrink without squeezing out the ends , I believe this will aid in connection longevity.

  6. This is a masterly, well done, and totally professional job of battery hookup wire making 🙂 There seems to be a tremendous amount of controversy over crimping and shrink wrapping, or crimping AND soldering, then shrink wrapping (??) The argument I've heard against the soldering step is a soldered connection will raise the impedance of the copper wire, thus, producing heating and reduce overall efficiency. (??) I'd like to see a video test on making copper hookup wires for DC battery voltages where this is put to the test and cables made with and without soldering is tested for heating, impedance, and overall efficiency.

  7. great vid bro…..good tip on marine wire too..I inherited an 600850 ROTO CRIMP TOOL MFG: AMP TYCO ELECTRONICS and excited to use it ,,,,,it uses SOLISTRAND terminals and splices…rock on !!

  8. So I like this video, the cables are stripped too much but the idea of crimp and solder makes sense. Have you looked into battery slugs? They are designed pretty good. wouldn't need to crimp either!

  9. im beggining to realize the wiring community is always quick to say whats wrong but fails to provide a vid showing anything other wise thx for the vid i have no idea what to do about the butchered baterry cables in my vehicle i just bought they still work for now but there pretty junky looking.

  10. I read on milspec that after you soldered something you should clean it with alcohol. I believe that would a be a counterword against everyone that says that you don't need to solder a crimped connection

  11. Little critique, when you plunged the cable into the battery terminal at 3:47, you needed more heat once the cable bottomed out. Deal is the wire pulled the heat from the terminal and cooled the solder off too fast. Another way I know this is at the same time in the video, that wire should of went all the way into the terminal. Lastly the solder will flow out of the terminal if done properly. Recap = the solder cooled stopping your wire from going all the way down.

  12. Little critique on the hand soldering. Keep connector down and cable up. Keeps solder where it belongs, inside the connector. Keep the heat at the lug hole if at all possible. Finally use larger solder if you can. I always wire brush off the soldered connector and wipe with an oily shop rag. Again GREAT video sir!! Lots of proper advice here people.

  13. WOW awesome!! but be sure your work area is well ventilated and has a fume extractor 🙂 those fumes are nasty 🙂


  15. a proper crimping tool is the only right way, this video demonstrates exactly what you are "NOT TO DO" in proffessional training. This guy is obviously "self taught". It is illegal to solder high current connections all over the world for a reason…. …. a proper crimping tool will cold weld the wire and connector together, producing the only safe connection. no additional work is needed on the connection itself.

  16. Do not listen to this information. Instead, use a proper crimping tool and seal with double wall heat shrink (the kind with glue in it).

    NONE of the OEM battery cables come with solder. NONE

  17. the best way to do this is to solder first. then you do your crimp. it's a night and day difference compared to the way you do it. my way looks better then most cheap factory crap like yours

  18. Dude, you've been watching too many YouTube videos on How NOT to make battery cables. Not only is it wrong to solder battery cables, it's dangerous. They're only crimped!

  19. I love this! My 44 year old truck needs new battery cables and I'd love to make my own.

    So 2 gauge marine cable (copper) is OK for a car/truck?

  20. Solder battery wire terminals proper way, with powerful enough soldering iron like 200W 500W etc. Propane – butane torches are a disaster for these as solder does no wick into the strands properly.

  21. Amazon now sells hexagon hydraulic crimpers with detachable jaws for 6ga. to 2-0 cable for $40.00 they produce 5 tons of crimping force " yes they are Chinese " mine have been working perfectly for 6 month's . the crimper comes in a plastic case and is about 14" long , this is far easier to use in the bilge of a boat. R. Walters Marine Electrician

  22. A properly installed battery shoe should always be crimped . High amperage is capable of raising the temperature of the joint high enough to melt solder .

  23. I like it but have no idea where you can buy ends And lugs like that. All they sell is junk Chinese terminals just garbage shit around here

  24. All my trucks have marine posts with soldered in ring terminals for 4 gauge wire. Never had a problem. Plan in doing this in my f250 off road rig as well

  25. Oh fer fucks sake I've used "Temporary" terminal for the last 26 years without a problem, so I guess I'll just have to tell all my shit it's supposed to be breaking down.

  26. With all the contradicting advise from the on-line experts you will now have enough ideas to do a video showing the current carrying capacity of soldered vs crimped joints. My personal non professional opinion is I do it just like you. Soldered joints may make the wire stiff near the solder, but they will work even if they get a little electrolyte on them and I've had a crimped only connection fail due to corrosion. If a soldered joint gets hot enough to melt solder due to current flow you are carrying too much current or the bolt connection next to the solder is overheating. Soldering joints doesn't raise their resistance.

  27. Jezz… could you possibly do this worse?
    Lugs are soldered or crimped. Never both. Nicking the conductor is absolutely not permitted. If you're going to crimp, use a crimper with the correct dye.

  28. Use double wall heat shrink with sealant inside, they make heat shrink tubing that includes a sealer or glue, it is the only type of heat shrink that can be considered " water proof " in my personal opinion, any soldered joint, should be cleaned with alcohol to remove left over flux as the flux itself will cause corrosion and failure of the connection.
    Brass battery clamp's are the best, they have the lowest " galvanic corrosion " rate when mixed with other metals, lead, copper, aluminum, tin etc…
    I guess no one ever told you about sweating the joint…. you have to keep applying heat as you solder and in some case's even after you have a good connection, so the convection currents can carry the solder all the way though the material as the material you add is usually much colder as someone else pointed out.
    this is not a " critique " of your work, this is only to pass on the knowledge i have accumulated over the years……

  29. What's your take on soldering without a crimp? Yes I know there's a little balancing act involved I've done it both ways. Depending on application and time constraints. Anyway my initial question 100% solder without a crimp, your opinion? Thanks

  30. Soldered connections are not allowed in aviation, only crimp. If you are using it in a stationary, non vibration application, soldering would be acceptable.

  31. Solder or crimp…. Argue, argue, argue…..
    Terminal ends are either made to crimp or solder, not both!!! Crimping a solder terminal can crack it… Thus ruining it
    Using a punch and hammer to crimp??? No… You are distorting and stretching the socket, causing uneven contact….and probably cracking it too. A good crimper will crimp evenly, much better contact.
    Just saying….only done it for about 50 years ..

  32. they dont solder cables on aircraft ,,, and watching the fitting distort as its hit with a nail punch is painful , at 3.36 you can watch the cable not go home fully ,,, why bare more cable than there is room for in the fitting and leave a gap , why not just measure from the fitting , ah well . to each their own i guess.

  33. This is the farmers way of making terminations!! It is not normal to lose a few strand of wire when stripping!!! Only use these techniques in a pinch!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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