Author Topic: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)  (Read 12486 times)

0 Members and 3 Guests are viewing this topic.

Offline ratkinsTopic starter

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 4
  • Country: de
I know this has been discussed before but there does not seem to have been a satisfying conclusion, and in any case the answer may have changed since.

What is the best all-purpose crimping tool system for hobbyist (non-production) use? I want my crimps to work, so I want a one-shot ratchet mechanism. This disqualifies the Engineer and Hozan P707 tools which I see recommended sometimes. The official manufacturer tools are out of the question as I’m not made of money, nor do I have the time or inclination to collect them second hand.

One approach would be to spend ~$30 each on four or five of the better-regarded generic knockoffs. This is my least-favoured option due partly to the questionable quality and longevity of such tools, but also for the amount of space it will take up in my toolbox.

Ideally I’d like to buy into an interchangeable die system. The Knipex 97 33 02 “Multicrimp” would be great (I like the tool-less quick-change magazine) and it’s not too expensive but it seems there are only five dies available and none of them are suitable for DuPont crimps (where the tabs should fold around, rather than bite into, the wire insulation.) Has anyone seen third-party dies available in this format?

Which leaves the Knipex 97 43 200. It has many more dies available and it seems there is even one suitable for DuPont crimps in a limited size range (can someone confirm this?) The problem here is that it is hellishly expensive by the time you buy the tool, case and a few dies. (Knipex’s sister brand Rennsteig isn’t meaningfully cheaper where I am.) One thing I cannot work out is if any third parties make dies which will fit the Knipex. Do the Rennstieg-branded dies fit the Knipex? If so the Rennstieg 624 053 3 0 might also work.

So: can anyone confirm the Knipex 97 49 24 or Rennstieg 624 053 3 0 (which I couldn’t find on the Rennstieg site, interestingly) die properly crimps DuPont—or if there are compatible dies that will do so for either Knipex system—or point me toward any other options I have missed?
« Last Edit: February 04, 2023, 04:37:38 pm by ratkins »
 

Online wraper

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 17103
  • Country: lv
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2023, 03:29:31 pm »
For Dupont crimps there is not much choice. 99% of inexpensive crimpers which are claimed to crimp Dupont cannot do it properly because of unsuitable die shape. Out of inexpensive ones you can use IWISS SN-025. IIRC there was another similarly priced crimper but I cannot recall its name. BTW Engineer crimpers you mentioned cannot crimp insulation side of the crimp either.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2023, 03:41:27 pm by wraper »
 
The following users thanked this post: tooki, mwb1100

Online wraper

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 17103
  • Country: lv
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2023, 03:53:01 pm »
Preciva PR-3254 works too. However with such insulation crimp style it can only crimp Dupont. Larger sizes are of usual "B" shape, while IWISS SN-025 has O shape for all 3 sizes so can be also used with KK396 for example. So it's better to have SN-025 besides some more common type crimpers like Multicrimp.
 
The following users thanked this post: mwb1100

Offline ratkinsTopic starter

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 4
  • Country: de
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2023, 04:41:55 pm »
It’s enraging that Knipex don’t simply… make DuPont-compatible dies for the MultiCrimp or 97 43 200? I’m getting antsy because just now it’s dropped below €100 on amazon.de so if I could make it work it’d be the perfect time to pull the trigger.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2023, 04:44:21 pm by ratkins »
 

Offline timeandfrequency

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 113
  • Country: fr
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2023, 04:51:25 pm »
Hi ratkins,

If you do not yet have a crimping tool, the Knipex 97 43 200 you allready spotted will allow you to crimp a very large spectrum of connectors. As you stated, it is expensive. But below 100 bucks, it's a bargain.

I would say that the most useful dies are the following ones, but it depends on your application :
97 49 05
97 49 06
97 49 08
97 49 10
97 49 40
97 49 44 : should also do it for 'Dupont' connectors by using the '0.14-0.25' slot (1)
97 49 66
97 49 70

(1) as you can see at the bottom part of the die, the shape is of dual height, which crimps the wire and the insulator with different strengh, as it should be.


As a hobbyist, I use the  97 52 05 plier for over 20 years (of course, not for 'Dupont' connectors), and the result is as good as you can expect from a custom cable manufacturer. Even if you do not notice any difference in the shape of the die, when comparing to a cheap copy, these tools crimp with the highest reliability.

I would add that the quality of the crimp also has something to do with the connector itself. Choosing first tier connector manufacturers like Molex, TE, Vogt, ... will undoubtedly lead to better results.

I unfortunately don't know if the Knipex dies are compatible with the Rennstieg plier, but I would suggest to give it a try and ask Knipex directely.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2023, 12:17:09 am by timeandfrequency »
 
The following users thanked this post: ratkins

Online wraper

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 17103
  • Country: lv
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2023, 05:40:46 pm »
97 49 44 : should also do it for 'Dupont' connectors by using the '0.14-0.25' slot
Yes, however this die costs 50% more than crimper itself. Making it together with crimper more expensive than Multicrimp with 5 dies included  :palm:
 

Offline Ian.M

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 12933
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2023, 08:53:05 am »
Have you read Tooki's topic: https://www.eevblog.com/forum/reviews/affordable-crimp-tools-for-small-connectors-(dupont-etc-)/ ?

You can get many of the dies for the budget ratcheting crimpers from various Aliexpress vendors.   However its very hard to find the die used in the TZ-4228B / SN-4228B separately (which you will need for duPont  connectors) so probably best to start with that compete tool, and get other dies as you need them.   I would suggest having at least two tools as its fairly futile to try to to keep a tool with dies used for ring terminals on 6mm2 battery cables tight enough long-term, that dies suitable for JST XH or duPont connectors on <0.1mm2 wire still crimp effectively.
 
The following users thanked this post: edavid, tooki

Offline ratkinsTopic starter

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 4
  • Country: de
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2023, 07:53:52 pm »
It’s the second link in my post.

Are you saying that there is a standard size and shape for the dies, and theoretically I can buy third-party knockoff dies that will fit the Knipex 97 43 200?
 

Offline tooki

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 11932
  • Country: ch
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2023, 10:10:48 pm »
Honestly, used original tools are a better choice than no-name crap. The more I crimp, the less patience I have for el-cheapo nonsense. I think you’re making a grave mistake by ruling out original and used original tooling. With some patience, you can find them for cheap.

Of all my crimp tools, the one I keep coming back to for DuPont is an original tool for a different (but physically similar) contact: the AMPMODU MOD IV tool I got a few years back. It’s just fantastic to use. A Mini-PV tool would be even better (since I’m also using more and more real Mini-PV instead of Chinese DuPont; real mini-PV contacts are FAR better, and they’re even harder to crimp in the wrong tooling than the Chinese DuPonts!!).
 

Offline tooki

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 11932
  • Country: ch
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2023, 10:13:46 pm »
Preciva PR-3254 works too. However with such insulation crimp style it can only crimp Dupont. Larger sizes are of usual "B" shape, while IWISS SN-025 has O shape for all 3 sizes so can be also used with KK396 for example. So it's better to have SN-025 besides some more common type crimpers like Multicrimp.
FYI, while the angled insulation crimp wings MUST be crimped with a circular die, flat insulation wings can be crimped with either m-style, circular, or overlap* crimp dies. I use my MOD IV tool with Molex KK254 (and clone) contacts, which have flat insulation crimps, all the time and the result is beautiful. (See photo; sorry, I don’t have a microscope!)


*see most Molex tools from the last few years.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2023, 10:27:01 pm by tooki »
 

Offline PlainName

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 6984
  • Country: va
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2023, 10:21:41 pm »
Quote
so I want a one-shot ratchet mechanism. This disqualifies the Engineer

I've had a selection of various crimp tools and favoured ratchet over non-ratchet. I had a bunch of Molex Picoblade crimps to do and nothing I tried would make a good crimp. So I  bit the bullet and bought a Engineer Pad-11 and quickly managed to do perfect crimps.

As well as preferring ratchet I also preferred doing wire and insulation in one go, but I've got used to doing them separately now. Sure, it takes a bit longer (though not much once you get into the swing) but it also allows you to use inappropriate cables.

I don't think the Engineer suffers from not having a ratchet because you're going to squeeze the dies together completely regardless. It's  not like they are 1/4" thick steel crimps - you squeeze and unless you're using one finger the two dies will meet completely.

The Engineers aren't cheap,  but I recently took the plunge and got a Pad-13 too to replace the larger crimpers.
 
The following users thanked this post: bookaboo

Online ledtester

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3084
  • Country: us
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2023, 11:43:44 pm »
What is the best all-purpose crimping tool system for hobbyist (non-production) use? ...

Have you looked at the Molex MTA system?

How To: MTA Connectors -- enph twofivethree
https://youtu.be/TnR3kFSGboQ

The official hand tool is only around $40 USD:

https://www.molex.com/molex/products/part-detail/application_toolin/0638133504

https://www.newark.com/molex/63813-3504/insertion-tool-2-54mm-crimp-rohs/dp/92AJ7706

Another possibly informative video comparing MTA with crimp pins:

.1" Headers: Crimp vs. IDC (MTA-100) -- joesnotes
https://youtu.be/uRiZFxZz_7Y
« Last Edit: February 07, 2023, 12:04:51 am by ledtester »
 

Offline nctnico

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 27261
  • Country: nl
    • NCT Developments
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2023, 12:26:55 am »
Honestly, used original tools are a better choice than no-name crap. The more I crimp, the less patience I have for el-cheapo nonsense. I think you’re making a grave mistake by ruling out original and used original tooling. With some patience, you can find them for cheap.

Of all my crimp tools, the one I keep coming back to for DuPont is an original tool for a different (but physically similar) contact: the AMPMODU MOD IV tool I got a few years back. It’s just fantastic to use.
I fully agree! And sometimes the original tools are very affordable when bought new. Molex has 'servicegrade' crimpers which typically can be used on several different contacts.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline sleemanj

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3029
  • Country: nz
  • Professional tightwad.
    • The electronics hobby components I sell.
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2023, 12:49:17 am »
How many are you doing?  If you are doing heaps, then sure, get a fancy ratchet with the correct die style. 

But if you are like most hobbiests and do a handful now and then, I would stand by my recommendation of the Iwiss 2820 manual pliers which I have made many times before, yes they have the "B" shape die which offends some so, but they work just fine for hobby purposes.  I have ratcheting crimpers of the usual chinese variety, but it'a the Iwiss 2820 I reach for every time.

Anyway, remember, for a good crimp the wire size is important, both insulation and conductor.
~~~
EEVBlog Members - get yourself 10% discount off all my electronic components for sale just use the Buy Direct links and use Coupon Code "eevblog" during checkout.  Shipping from New Zealand, international orders welcome :-)
 

Offline profanum429

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 56
  • Country: us
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2023, 03:37:25 am »
I've settled on Molex SL as my go-to connector system; it's latching, 2.54mm pitch, through hole, smd, and wire-to-wire options. The only downside is there is no 1x connector, minimum 2. I bought an older style crimper off eBay for about $50 and it's worked like a charm for the last three years.

I still keep around a HT-95 and HT-102 crimper that I scavenged off eBay for doing Dupont crimps, but I try to mostly use SL for most things now. I also have an AMPMODU IV crimper for Dupont clones, but I miss having a good locator (at least the AMPMODU crimper I got, the locator is useless for clone Duponts), so I mostly use genuine Duponts now. Locator aside though, the AMPMODU crimper does a fantastic job of crimping.
 
The following users thanked this post: tooki

Offline tooki

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 11932
  • Country: ch
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2023, 01:18:43 pm »
What is the best all-purpose crimping tool system for hobbyist (non-production) use? ...

Have you looked at the Molex MTA system?

How To: MTA Connectors -- enph twofivethree
https://youtu.be/TnR3kFSGboQ

The official hand tool is only around $40 USD:

https://www.molex.com/molex/products/part-detail/application_toolin/0638133504

https://www.newark.com/molex/63813-3504/insertion-tool-2-54mm-crimp-rohs/dp/92AJ7706

Another possibly informative video comparing MTA with crimp pins:

.1" Headers: Crimp vs. IDC (MTA-100) -- joesnotes
https://youtu.be/uRiZFxZz_7Y
Your general suggestion is a good one, but you’re confusing things. The Molex KK insulation displacement connectors are discontinued.

MTA-100 is similar, but it’s not from Molex, it’s from TE (originally AMP). I’ve used them before and indeed they work well, with inexpensive tooling. I wouldn’t say the end result is quite as robust as a well made crimp, but it’s certainly good.
 
The following users thanked this post: ledtester

Offline JohanH

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 639
  • Country: fi
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2023, 01:24:04 pm »
I use IWS-3220M for Dupont and JST-XH. If it's the correct one, I don't know, but result looks and feels good.
 

Offline tooki

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 11932
  • Country: ch
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #17 on: February 07, 2023, 01:28:06 pm »
How many are you doing?  If you are doing heaps, then sure, get a fancy ratchet with the correct die style. 

But if you are like most hobbiests and do a handful now and then, I would stand by my recommendation of the Iwiss 2820 manual pliers which I have made many times before, yes they have the "B" shape die which offends some so, but they work just fine for hobby purposes.  I have ratcheting crimpers of the usual chinese variety, but it'a the Iwiss 2820 I reach for every time.

Anyway, remember, for a good crimp the wire size is important, both insulation and conductor.
It’s not “offensive”, it’s a functional problem. The mangled insulation wings make it harder and unreliable to insert into the housings.

We advise against doing that because it causes problems, not because of aesthetics or emotions, as you imply.
 
The following users thanked this post: wraper

Online wraper

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 17103
  • Country: lv
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #18 on: February 07, 2023, 01:28:55 pm »
I use IWS-3220M for Dupont and JST-XH. If it's the correct one, I don't know, but result looks and feels good.
For sure it's not correct for Dupont and insulation crimp cannot look good because it will be mangled like crimp on the left, not wrapped around the insulation.

« Last Edit: February 07, 2023, 01:30:38 pm by wraper »
 
The following users thanked this post: tooki

Offline tooki

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 11932
  • Country: ch
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2023, 01:30:02 pm »
I use IWS-3220M for Dupont and JST-XH. If it's the correct one, I don't know, but result looks and feels good.
I have that tool. Not correct for DuPont (though less bad than the SN-28B that’s usually sold as a DuPont crimper), but quite decent for XH. I use that exact tool for XH myself.
 

Offline tooki

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 11932
  • Country: ch
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #20 on: February 07, 2023, 01:33:06 pm »
I've settled on Molex SL as my go-to connector system; it's latching, 2.54mm pitch, through hole, smd, and wire-to-wire options. The only downside is there is no 1x connector, minimum 2. I bought an older style crimper off eBay for about $50 and it's worked like a charm for the last three years.

I still keep around a HT-95 and HT-102 crimper that I scavenged off eBay for doing Dupont crimps, but I try to mostly use SL for most things now. I also have an AMPMODU IV crimper for Dupont clones, but I miss having a good locator (at least the AMPMODU crimper I got, the locator is useless for clone Duponts), so I mostly use genuine Duponts now. Locator aside though, the AMPMODU crimper does a fantastic job of crimping.
How do the HT-95 and HT-102 do on DuPont clones?

And what are the factors for preferring Molex SL (which I am familiar with but have never used myself) over genuine Mini-PV?

I mostly use JST XH and Molex KK254 on new projects.
 

Online wraper

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 17103
  • Country: lv
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #21 on: February 07, 2023, 01:38:37 pm »
What is the best all-purpose crimping tool system for hobbyist (non-production) use? ...

Have you looked at the Molex MTA system?

How To: MTA Connectors -- enph twofivethree
https://youtu.be/TnR3kFSGboQ

The official hand tool is only around $40 USD:

https://www.molex.com/molex/products/part-detail/application_toolin/0638133504

https://www.newark.com/molex/63813-3504/insertion-tool-2-54mm-crimp-rohs/dp/92AJ7706

Another possibly informative video comparing MTA with crimp pins:

.1" Headers: Crimp vs. IDC (MTA-100) -- joesnotes
https://youtu.be/uRiZFxZz_7Y
I would never use MTA-100 for my own projects. It's unreliable garbage IME. Over time whey lose contact with wire also wire can be pulled out way too easily.
 

Offline timeandfrequency

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 113
  • Country: fr
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #22 on: February 07, 2023, 01:43:16 pm »
Hi PlainName,

Quote
so I want a one-shot ratchet mechanism. This disqualifies the Engineer
[...]
So I  bit the bullet and bought a Engineer Pad-11 and quickly managed to do perfect crimps.

As well as preferring ratchet I also preferred doing wire and insulation in one go, but I've got used to doing them separately now. Sure, it takes a bit longer (though not much once you get into the swing) but it also allows you to use inappropriate cables.
You are right : the Engineer crimping pliers does not feature a dual height die, and therefore, crimping a connector become a two step task (first crimp the wire then the insulator). The connector has to be positionned precisely twice inside the die.
For one or two connectors, it's OK, but I found it quickly boring when I have a bunch of them to crimp.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2023, 02:39:35 pm by timeandfrequency »
 

Offline mcovington

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 191
  • Country: us
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #23 on: February 08, 2023, 01:23:35 am »
I mostly use generic DuPont-style connectors such as the ones from Jameco.

Like others here, I've found the IWiss SN-025 much better than other inexpensive crimpers.  It is similar to their SN-28B but handles the insulation side better, wrapping around it in a circle rather than indenting it.  I have not had any trouble getting good crimps.

I also have an AMP 90430, designed for "High Density DF" but capable of crimping these DuPont-style connectors.   Advantage: When it works, it works beautifully.  Besides the two dies, there is a blade that holds the connector in place.   Disadvantage:  You cannot release the ratchet once it has started to engage.  So if a connector has gotten stuck off-center in it, you have no choice but to complete the crimp and end up with a mangled connector.  Also, it only fits one exact size of connector.  And there is a high (5%) chance of accidentally ruining a connector and having to start over.

Advantages of the SN-025: There is a ratchet release; you can see what you're doing; and with some care, other sizes of connectors can be crimped, such as JST-style (shorter) (although the IWiss SN-01 is better for these, and I have it). 

Basically, for me, it's a 100% chance of getting 95% of the quality, versus a 95% chance of getting better quality and also taking more time.  Under the microscope, the IWiss crimps look good, though not quite as neat as those done with the AMP tool.
 

Offline profanum429

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 56
  • Country: us
Re: Crimpin’ ain’t easy (or: best hobbyist crimping tool/system?)
« Reply #24 on: February 08, 2023, 02:51:11 am »
I've settled on Molex SL as my go-to connector system; it's latching, 2.54mm pitch, through hole, smd, and wire-to-wire options. The only downside is there is no 1x connector, minimum 2. I bought an older style crimper off eBay for about $50 and it's worked like a charm for the last three years.

I still keep around a HT-95 and HT-102 crimper that I scavenged off eBay for doing Dupont crimps, but I try to mostly use SL for most things now. I also have an AMPMODU IV crimper for Dupont clones, but I miss having a good locator (at least the AMPMODU crimper I got, the locator is useless for clone Duponts), so I mostly use genuine Duponts now. Locator aside though, the AMPMODU crimper does a fantastic job of crimping.
How do the HT-95 and HT-102 do on DuPont clones?

And what are the factors for preferring Molex SL (which I am familiar with but have never used myself) over genuine Mini-PV?

I mostly use JST XH and Molex KK254 on new projects.

The HT tools work on the clones, but you have to adjust the locators. I like to keep them for genuine ones only though as the HT crimpers do not have an unlock feature, so once you're crimping you are committed and while it's difficult, you can break a die if the contact isn't inserted all the way.

I ended up on the SL because I really like that they have a latching option and the contacts and housings are not too onerous on price. The tooling is also pretty easy to find and works well and is fairly cheap. I can also use them with other 2.54mm families, as long as I'm not looking for a 1x1 connector.

For Dupont clones, in my opinion, the holy grail is a Harwin Z20-320. The locator on it is magnificent and it crimps Dupont clones perfectly every time. I have one at work and it's pretty fantastic, I'd love to find a personal one but they always go for a decent chunk of money, pretty close to retail prices.
 
The following users thanked this post: tooki


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf