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Posted by jininjin 
February 27, 2012 09:21PM
I am new to this and anything to do with electronics.....What are people using for wiring? Is there any tips for making the wiring as neat as possible any pre-made wires like this? [www.mcmaster.com] or [www.mcmaster.com]
Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 12:03AM
Hi, well there a lots of options of course. I got "24 awg stranded wire" from ebay ( seller: 1michiganger), and i like it a lot, great quality.
For making the wires look neat: search for "braided expandable sleeving" for the reprap 1/8" and 1/4" is great stuff. Get some shrinktube to finish it. For tips on sleeving search on "psu sleeving" on a search engine.

Good luck!
Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 01:17AM
Similar to north90ty, I use 22 awg stranded for motor and heater wiring (I bought several colors from Fry's, but you can get it anywhere) and 24 awg stranded for fans, endstops, and thermistors. I use a larger gauge wire for the heated bed. To keep everything tidy I use spiral cut wire wrap, but expandable sleeving would probably look nicer.

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Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 04:28AM
It might be a good idea to keep the motor wires apart from the end stops and thermistors to avoid any cross talk between them.
Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 05:09AM
I agree that heatshrink tubing with braiding can make your wiring look great, I've been doing it myself on my second printer, a MendelMax:


It is relatively inexpensive but can be time consuming to remove connectors, heatshrink and braid, then redo the connectors.
It takes no time at all if your motors come without connectors. You can also slip 6mm tubing and braiding over 2 and 3 pin connectors without removal.
Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 05:59AM
I can highly recommend [www.mdpc-x.com] for low cost super-high quality cable sleeving and accessories.

It helped make the cable mess of gen3 remix set look somewhat decent, until I started hacking it without using sleeving, that is. tongue sticking out smiley

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Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 08:46AM
Ok, great. I noticed there was a wrappable sleeve.... I might give that a go since it gives the most flexibly. The mdpc site seems promising but I guess they have store hours. I cant even look at the products until its open which wont work for my schedule.

Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 09:24AM
It's the first time I've seen it closed, he must've been swamped with orders suddeenly. Kind of weird you can't browse though. But closing mdpc when he reach a high amount of orders in one day is his way of running his business, and I respect that deeply. It avoids the insane backlogs we've seen from several RepRap shops.

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Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 10:30AM
Would cat5 be suitable? I've seen this used on some repraps. also, the wiring in many printers that use steppers is pretty thin guage.

cat5 would be nice for the extruder, since you could run the motor and thermistor/heater through one cable (crosstalk issues of course. would the twisted pair help at all?)
Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 01:16PM
If you want to use CAT5 to the extruder (or any other part that moves), be sure to get the stranded type cable, and not the solid core type. With eight (8) wires, you should be able to wire up the stepper motor (4), the thermistor (2), and the hot end (2).
Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 01:32PM
Only one pair of for the extruder? Isn't that too low for the current we run through it?

I've had my extruder connectors corrode, which were far more beefy than rj45's, and now only use fat wires with deans connectors for both the extruder and bed heaters.

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Re: Wiring
February 28, 2012 01:49PM
I've used CAT5 to my extruder with one pair for the heater and it worked pretty well for a while. After months of active printing though the RJ45 jack started losing connection unless the plug was physically jammed in. The back and forth motion must be wearing down the pins. I've replaced the plug twice now. I also used 18awg wire for the heat bed, and those snap off constantly. I had to connect them to screw terminals just to make it easier to fix the inevitable breakage.

For both of these I'm moving to a ribbon cable solution. Regular wiring to a small breakout board on either end of the part that travels linearly (bed or x-carriage). the only wiring along that travel is a ribbon cable with idc connectors and printed strain relief to make sure bending doesn't happen at the connector. For the heat bed it'll be a standard IDE cable (40 pins total, 38 for bed power, 2 for thermistor) and for x-carriage a floppy cable (34 pins, 8 for heater, 4 for motor, 2 for thermistor, 2 for fan, enough for a second extruder).

I'm not done with this setup so I don't know how well it'll work, but when I'm done the results will be posted on thingiverse.
Re: Wiring
February 29, 2012 08:32AM
How much wire do I need? Say if I get 25' reel either Cat5 or 22-24 gauge awg wire cut into 1' increments enough?

Hotends.com recommends getting this for the J-Head:
High-temperature wire for resistor
Teflon (PTFE) sleeving for thermistor lead insulation

Anything else I need to know? I am uncertain also how everything wires together? Can I use some sort of plugs or do I just solder directly to the parts? I am afraid of burning my place down or electrocution.

This will be my setup:
4 Pololu Steppers
5 Nema 17 motors
J-Head Mk IV-B
Prusa PCB Heated Bed (MK2)
[ca.mouser.com] BOM (I added Molex connectors)
Re: Wiring
March 01, 2012 09:25PM
This power supply will work for my setup (above post) correct? 12V [www.topower.com]
I just need to modify the green wire and brown/orange sense wires by cutting and soldering them to the board? What happens to the rest of the wires for the power supply? Can I cut them off and put caps on them? I no electrical experience so I am guessing......
Re: Wiring
March 02, 2012 12:58PM
I vote for Cat5. for the steppers, thermistors and end stops. I love it because it is cheap (more often free if you have an IT department who keeps the end of rolls for you or you keep an eye out for discarded lengths) and if you split the cable you get 4 twisted pairs.

I use a heavier gauge cable for the heating elements purchased from my local electronics supplier.
Re: Wiring
March 05, 2012 06:50AM
jininjin Wrote:
> This power supply will work for my setup (above
> post) correct? 12V
> [www.topower.com]
> I just need to modify the green wire and
> brown/orange sense wires by cutting and soldering
> them to the board? What happens to the rest of the
> wires for the power supply? Can I cut them off and
> put caps on them? I no electrical experience so I
> am guessing......

Yes, that power supply should work, 40A on 12V is more than enough. But that is NOT how you wire it. To turn the power supply on, put a wire between the green wire on the 24 Pin ATX and one of the black ones. To power the Sanguinololu, you plug in the 4 Pin Molex Hard Drive Connector into the right side of the board and the ATX 4 Pin to the bottom left. Your power supply has an ATX 8 Pin instead of a 4 Pin, so 4 Pins will be hanging off the sides. It's fine. And I wouldn't cut any connectors off. If you must, put some electrical tape or a rubber cap over them, that way it's still usable as a computer power supply, and if you ever want to change electronics, some use the other connectors.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/05/2012 06:52AM by shardbearer.
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