How Can I Crimp a Weather Pack Connector?
Weather pack connectors are popular types of terminals/connectors, especially in the automotive industry, heavy-duty machinery, and marine applications. One distinguishing feature is their ability to withstand extreme moisture, temperature, and mechanical stress, thus making them appropriate for such applications. Overall, weather pack connectors/terminals make pretty reliable connections.
One of the most reliable methods of making weather pack connections is crimping. This post is a step-by-step guide to crimping weather pack connectors/terminal pins. Therefore, you can easily make reliable and weather-resistant electrical connections.
Tools and Material Needed
1. Weather pack connector kit
Ensure you have a weather pack connector kit with male and female terminals. More importantly, your chosen kit should be ideal for your application. Consider the iCrimp WP-404 Weather Pack Connector Kit.
Choose a wire with a gauge that matches your connectors.
3. Crimping tool
When choosing a crimping tool, you need to consider the barrel style on the terminals. For terminals with an open barrel, choose a B-type crimp tool like the iCrimp IWC-1424AB crimping tool. For a closed barrel, choose an F-type crimp tool.
4. Wire cutter
A wire cutter is quite helpful in wire preparation, precisely cutting the wire to the desired length. A good wire cutter should give you smooth and neat cutting.
5. Wire stripper
It strips off the insulation on the ends of a wire where the terminal is inserted.
6. Wire seals
It provides extra protection on the crimped connection. Some weather pack connector kits come with wire seals. Above all, ensure the seals are correctly sized.
Step by step: Crimping Weather Pack Connectors/Terminals
A. Prepare the wire
Start by measuring the length of wire needed, and then use a wire cutter to cut your wire to the desired length. Another vital part entails stripping the wire on the end where your terminal is crimped. The length of the stripped portion must match the length/depth of your terminal barrel. This can easily be done using a wire stripper. However, you can use a tool like the iCrimp LA-2546B Wire Stripper/Cutter tool, which functions as both a wire stripper and wire cutter.
B. Insert the wire seal
Insert your wire weather pack seal and slip it over the wire’s insulation where the stripping ends. Ensure the seals flush with the exposed conductor.
C. Position the weather pack terminal pin on the crimping tool’s dies
Position the barrel of the terminal into the jaws of the crimping tool’s die set and slightly squeeze the handles to hold the connector into place. However, ensure you use the proper jaws matching the size of the terminal.
D. Insert the stripped wire into the connector
The next step is to insert the stripped end of the wire into the terminal positioned on the crimping tool. It’s crucial you align your wire seal with the terminal’s barrel: the small tabs of connectors should be on the wire, and larger ones should be positioned over the seal. This should allow you to complete the crimping.
E. Crimp the connector
Squeeze the handles of your crimping tool to close its jaws and completely crimp the terminal on the conductor. Also, crimp the tabs on the seal to ensure you have a secure crimp. A good crimping tool should have a ratcheting mechanism that releases and allows the tool to open once a crimping cycle is complete.
F. Double-check the connection
It’s important you verify the quality of the crimped connection. Start by physically inspecting the crimp. You can also do a pull test to ensure you have a tight and complete crimp.
Read more: How to Validate a Crimp Quality
G. Insert the terminal into the connector
Once you’ve verified you have a properly crimped connection, insert/poke your terminal into the connector casing/housing until it clicks. Usually, male terminals are used with shroud housing, and female terminals are used with tower housing.
Proper crimping is necessary when using weather pack connectors to create reliable and tight connections. Following the above-outlined steps will enable you to make quality crimps. More importantly, having the right tools is essential in this process. For this reason, iCrimp offers user-friendly and quality crimpers for weather pack terminals and other tools such as wire cutters and strippers for different wire gauges.