Author Topic: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)  (Read 7197 times)

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Offline Housedad

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Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« on: April 22, 2017, 05:17:12 am »
it is a dying art, for sure.  But I was wondering if any of the younger crowd (say, under 30) have ever created a circuit with wire wrap.   I mean real wire wrap wilth a twist tool, WW dip socket posts, etc.  I did thousands of connections back in the day, and it provided not only the breadboarding but the final circuit finished.  Only problem was it was delicate and thick!!   ;D

See if any of these apply to you

1. Used a hand wirewrap tool?
2. Used a power wirewrap tool?
3. Owned a wirewrap tool of any kind?
4. Accidentally stepped on a upside down wirewrap dip socket and had to go to the hospital to get it removed?
5. Slammed your hand down onto a dense wirewrap board in anger and then instantly regret it for multiple reasons?
6. Wish you still could wirewrap
7. Glad you don't have to do it ever again
8. WTF is a wirewrap tool?




« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 06:23:31 am by Housedad »
At least I'm still older than my test equipment
 

Offline ataradov

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Re: How many of they younger crowd have ever done wire wrap?
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2017, 05:36:17 am »
There is a whole flame war thread on this subject somewhere around here. I don't feel like repeating it again :)

Here it is: https://www.eevblog.com/forum/beginners/is-anyone-still-using-wire-wrap-for-prototypes/
Alex
 

Offline Housedad

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Re: How many of they younger crowd have ever done wire wrap?
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2017, 05:45:21 am »
no, I missed that thread, and I don't want to start a flame war.   It is a dying method.  i guess they can just close this thread. 
At least I'm still older than my test equipment
 

Offline Ian.M

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Re: How many of they younger crowd have ever done wire wrap?
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2017, 05:47:36 am »
First you've got to define "younger crowd"

Perhaps you should start a poll to see if anyone admits to having owned or used a hand or powered wirewrap tool.  In addition to the four owned/used  hand/power choices, and the obvious 'No', it might be amusing to add the choice 'WTF is that?'

The thread Ataradov linked is pretty constructive. It doesn't look like a flame war in any shape or form, even if there is a slight flavour of 'We have better options now'.

Edit:
1 & 3 - I've still got a hand wrap tool with stripper in the side of it and keep a limited selection of wire and pins.  Its still a good option if you need to configure a dev-board with male headers in a way the designer never anticipated so didn't provide jumpers for, and want something more robust & reliable than a plug-on F-F flywire.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 07:02:46 am by Ian.M »
 

Offline Housedad

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Re: How many of they younger crowd have ever done wire wrap?
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2017, 05:57:53 am »
Actually, that poll sounds like a better Idea.  Maybe I'll rename this thread and add the poll?  Sound good?
At least I'm still older than my test equipment
 

Offline Richard Crowley

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2017, 06:34:40 am »
I have used three levels of WW tools.
1) Full mains-powered (like a mini hand drill)
2) Hand-powered. Pull the "trigger" and it produces the proper n-count of wraps.
3) Full manual. A small pencil-size tool where you had to do all the turns yourself.
.
In the mid 1960s, was the WW tech for a small computer company ("Tempo Computers") which was gobbled up by GTE and then Reuters, et.al.  All bright yellow Kynar insulated 30 AWG solid wire wrapped around 0.025 square socket posts.

I got daily printouts (long continuous-form paper from the line-printer) of changes to make. And you avoided "daisy-chain" because if you had to remove a connection in the middle of the chain, then you had to remove and replace perhaps a dozen wires.  It was state of the art back then, but like most "old tech", good riddance.  I'm glad we're not stuck with that dinousar technology anymore
 

Offline Paul Moir

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2017, 06:52:20 am »
I've had one of those old Radio Shack wire wrap hand tools for probably 30 years now.  It's primary use has been a container for the little 30awg wire stripper that came with it.  It has successfully prevented me from loosing it unlike practically every other tool I've had even half that long.  I use that stripper constantly for point-to-point rats nest one-off construction.
Back then Radio Shack, or more correctly the Canadian Intertan version,  carried perf board, wire wrap wire, the wire wrap tool but no sockets.  They were kind of useless like that.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 06:53:55 am by Paul Moir »
 

Offline Harb

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2017, 07:14:16 am »
Wire Wrapping was done in many spacecraft.........

Apparently solder joints of the day were aerated which would case failures in the vacuum of space.......
 

Offline @rt

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2017, 07:16:14 am »
I’d hardly call the other thread a flame war.
Yes I know about it well, and have unwrapped many wrap boards for salvage,
have never owned or used the tool,
would perhaps be in it if it were still appropriate to begin with it at this time.

Have always appreciated the art of it, and have often admired the original Amiga prototype,
where the wire wrap is just the boards that were reduced to the custom VLSI chips in the production.
http://www.computermagazine.com/syndicated/amiga-is-30-23-unseen-images-of-rare-commodore-amiga-prototypes/
Images 13-17 were massive cubes that in the end, just plug into chip sockets as the production VLSI chips would plug into :D


« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 07:18:33 am by @rt »
 

Offline ataradov

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2017, 07:30:24 am »
I’d hardly call the other thread a flame war.
Yeah, it is more benign than I remember.
Alex
 

Offline Nusa

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2017, 08:11:17 am »
1. Yes.
2. A few times. Not recently.
3. I still own a pencil-type wrap/unwrap/strip tool.
4. Nope.
5. Nope.
6. I still can.
7. Even today, there's an occasional use for it. For instance, connecting a couple header pins to ground pins on the back of a repurposed server power supply to power it on. Header pins aren't wirewrap pins, but they work well enough for a single wire.
8. Bzzt. I'm too old for your survey.
 

Offline intabits

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2017, 12:28:39 pm »
Did a lot of it on S100 bus with Z80 and 6809.
Manual only.
No accidents.
Don't miss it.
Wish I were 30.
 

Online Brumby

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Re: How many of they younger crowd have ever done wire wrap?
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2017, 03:14:53 pm »
Actually, that poll sounds like a better Idea.  Maybe I'll rename this thread and add the poll?  Sound good?

You do know you can add a proper "poll", don't you?
 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2017, 03:50:46 pm »
Sure, I own a Gardner-Denver cut-strip-wrap gun and have used it extensively.  These days very little is wire-wrapped so I don't think I'll be using it again.  Back in the '80s, it was the hot setup.  This isn't the '80s...
 

Offline CatalinaWOW

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2017, 04:08:59 pm »
Yes on 1, 2, 3 and emphatically 7.
No on 4, 5 and 6.

Duh? on 8.
 

Online Zero999

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Re: How many of they younger crowd have ever done wire wrap?
« Reply #15 on: April 22, 2017, 04:32:40 pm »
There is a whole flame war thread on this subject somewhere around here. I don't feel like repeating it again :)

Here it is: https://www.eevblog.com/forum/beginners/is-anyone-still-using-wire-wrap-for-prototypes/
I disagree about that being a flame war. It's fairly civil. For an example of that, look at the current vs voltage control of a bipolar transistor or a brexit thread.

Anyway, I've never used wirewrap myself. I suppose I'm too young. However, I've seen real life examples of wire-wrap before. I agree: it's a very reliable technique and the main downside is it isn't compatible with the vast majority of modern components.
 

Offline tecman

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #16 on: April 22, 2017, 05:16:54 pm »
1-3 yes
rest no

paul
 

Offline firehopper

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #17 on: April 22, 2017, 05:43:13 pm »
1&3 yes, no to the rest
 

Online MarkF

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #18 on: April 22, 2017, 05:52:09 pm »
I have 2 pencil type and 1 manual (squeeze handle to wrap) tools. And I just wire-wraped a small prototype board this year.
 

Offline retrolefty

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #19 on: April 22, 2017, 05:54:59 pm »
Quote
See if any of these apply to you

1. Used a hand wirewrap tool?  Yes, 70s to early 80s
2. Used a power wirewrap tool? Yes, 70s to early 80s
3. Owned a wirewrap tool of any kind? Yes, 70s to early 80s
6. Wish you still could wirewrap  Yes, I would use it again if appropriate.


 

Offline ZeTeX

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #20 on: April 22, 2017, 07:22:02 pm »
>>
1. Used a hand wirewrap tool? Nope
2. Used a power wirewrap tool? Nope
3. Owned a wirewrap tool of any kind? Nope
4. Accidentally stepped on a upside down wirewrap dip socket and had to go to the hospital to get it removed? WTF? no..
5. Slammed your hand down onto a dense wirewrap board in anger and then instantly regret it for multiple reasons? no..
6. Wish you still could wirewrap  I like soldering
7. Glad you don't have to do it ever again I never did it
8. WTF is a wirewrap tool? For some reason they still force students to use wire wrap on perfboard... High school..
<<
 

Offline Housedad

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #21 on: April 22, 2017, 08:48:21 pm »
The reason for questions 4 and 5 was because they are both a YES for me. 

I was making a 8088 to be used as a controller and the pins were the long type.  I was at home and in my socks wire wrapping away when I was called to get some lunch.  As I got off of the tall drafting chair I knocked a couple of dip sockets onto the floor and stepped right down on one of them into the ball of my foot.  Complete penetration and I could not pull it out.  Stuck in bone.   I have 16 small scars on the bottom of my foot that fit a integrated circuit perfectly.

My older brother just loved to get my goat or aggravate me.  He came over to the house and told me something that really pissed me off one time while I was troubleshooting a wirewrap circuit that I had made.  I got so angry that I slammed my hand down on the table in frustrated rage.  When I picked my hand back up the circuit came with it.   Still have those scars too.   The circuit was toast between the smash and the blood.

I did some really stupid stuff in my 20's.   But at least it wasn't drugs... :-//
« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 08:53:02 pm by Housedad »
At least I'm still older than my test equipment
 

Offline Red Squirrel

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #22 on: April 22, 2017, 09:16:50 pm »
Never owned one but have used one.  I work in telecom and every now and then I might have to go run a jumper on the frame.  Most of the blocks are punch down but we have a few that require a wire wrap tool.  We use the manual ones, one you have to twist manually, the other is like a gun.   It's kinda neat to use, but I can see why they moved to punch down as it's faster.   Never used it outside of telecom though.  I would maybe find an excuse to use it at home if I had a tool, but would not really go out of my way for it.   Could be handy if doing point to point circuitry.

This is similar to the one I used:

 

Online Cliff Matthews

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #23 on: April 22, 2017, 10:42:35 pm »
1,2,3 and 7 and using a gun like above post. Did whole telecom cabinets in the 80's. Don't miss wiring mid-frame cross-connects one bit either, where my body had to be half inside the cabinet. Many times additions were made on working frames with cold air roaring up from the under a raised floor (making already numb arms ache and giving you a cold). The 210 jackfields required lots of work. Eventually, a lot of stuff went modular and we had to learn how use an Amphenol butterfly tool to make custom 50-pin m/f cables.


Who has used one of these?


*edit - Here, the color/order guides are set to Male (you'd flip them over to do Female amp connectors)
« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 10:52:39 pm by Cliff Matthews »
 

Offline vk6zgo

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Re: Have you ever owned a wirewrap tool? (poll)
« Reply #24 on: April 23, 2017, 01:36:32 am »
it is a dying art, for sure.  But I was wondering if any of the younger crowd (say, under 30) have ever created a circuit with wire wrap.   I mean real wire wrap wilth a twist tool, WW dip socket posts, etc.  I did thousands of connections back in the day, and it provided not only the breadboarding but the final circuit finished.  Only problem was it was delicate and thick!!   ;D

See if any of these apply to you

1. Used a hand wirewrap tool?
2. Used a power wirewrap tool?
3. Owned a wirewrap tool of any kind?
4. Accidentally stepped on a upside down wirewrap dip socket and had to go to the hospital to get it removed?
5. Slammed your hand down onto a dense wirewrap board in anger and then instantly regret it for multiple reasons?
6. Wish you still could wirewrap
7. Glad you don't have to do it ever again
8. WTF is a wirewrap tool?

I'm  a "Greybeard", & I can count on the fingers of half of one hand how many times I've used wirewrap.(Handwrapping "jumper" wire around terminal blocks in Comms stuff doesn't count!!)

As RF dweebs, I, & most of many of my colleagues hated the whole idea of them.

Dirty great lengths of jumper wire, far from ultimate dimensions for HF, Stray L & C everywhere!

I did have to repair a few wire wrap circuits later, but never really lost my disdain.
 


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