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Discussion Starter #21
I have the power cable from running on the drivers side of the car. The speaker wirers are running in the middle and the RCAs are run on the passenger side.

Like Chum said making sure the rest of your install is proper first may fix your issue. $100 RCA's does not a noiseless system make. More often than not a difference in ground potential will allow noise into a system far easier than an 'inferior' set of signal cables. Where and how are your components grounded - Radio? Amp(s)? etc. I would bet if you put an ohmmeter between your radio ground and amp ground you would be surprised at how much of a difference there is. Begin by regrounding your HU securely to some bare metal (scraped or wire brushed til shiny) and do the same to your amp(s). Follow up by cleaning up wiring under the hood (big 6 etc) and go from there. You may fix your noise problem and help your system's electrical demands all at the same time. If the noise is still there, atleast you know that everything else is done right.

Remember, low level signal needs to stay far away from high current power as possible and when necessary crossed at 90* angles...this means ALL high current (computer modules, heater wires, blower motors etc.).
 

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I have a set of 6.5 components and 6x9s. They are running off of a Kicker 08zx650.4 The subs are running off of a Kicker 08zx750.1

I am going to play with the headunit and see what I can accomplish.
 

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Remember, low level signal needs to stay far away from high current power as possible and when necessary crossed at 90* angles...this means ALL high current (computer modules, heater wires, blower motors etc.).
Since I have several wires running under the carpet I zip tied the three runs of rcas together, the four runs of speaker wire together to get everything neat under there.

I have another set of components being put in kicks within the next few days.
 

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Also a few more things about noise....

Make sure you don't use more ground cable than needed. I've seen this a lot where people just coil up extra ground cable. (Lets see who can identify what electrical compondent is created with a coil of wire. Hint: Its common on a set of coaxial speakers to separate the highs along with a capacitor.)

Also, matt said to ground to shiney metal. I usually take a flat blade screwdriver and scrape all the paint off the area I'm gonna ground to. Usually use 2 or 3 self tappers on 1 lug to make sure it doesn't come loose. you want NOTHING (no paint, no screws, nothing) in the way of your ground lug and the metal of your car. Also, avoid grounding to brackets (such as the ones your radio is attached to). Even though they are metal, they are sometimes isolated when attached to carpeted pieces in the car or plastic. Go DIRECTLY to a flat surface of the body of the car and remember, no paint, NONE.
 

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Also, matt said to ground to shiney metal. I usually take a flat blade screwdriver and scrape all the paint off the area I'm gonna ground to.

screw that manual labor. get a little variety pack from harbor freight for under $5 and let your drill do all the work. makes a nice little circle area for your ground.






also be sure to put down a good layer of dielectric grease between the terminal and the grounding point as well as a good layer on top of everything once you are done. prevents corrosion on the exposed metal.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
screw that manual labor. get a little variety pack from harbor freight for under $5 and let your drill do all the work. makes a nice little circle area for your ground.



also be sure to put down a good layer of dielectric grease between the terminal and the grounding point as well as a good layer on top of everything once you are done. prevents corrosion on the exposed metal.
yesserreeebob.
 

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screw that manual labor. get a little variety pack from harbor freight for under $5 and let your drill do all the work. makes a nice little circle area for your ground.






also be sure to put down a good layer of dielectric grease between the terminal and the grounding point as well as a good layer on top of everything once you are done. prevents corrosion on the exposed metal.
yesserreeebob.
takes longer to get the drill out and put that thing in it than hit it with a flat screwdriver lol... plus I can see some shit like that "walking away" from like every shop I used to work it... at least with a screwdriver, I can steal them back lol.

I got used to using whatever I had to get shit done. Really makes you rethink the possibilities of your tools when your limited to the basics lol.
 

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Better? If you were talking between having to choose one or the other it would depend on what type of connector, the wire, the intended application and many other factors. When using the common ring terminal connectors like this you'll probably be okay with just crimping, but if you crimp and then solder you will have provided mechanical strength via the crimp as well as a better long-term electrical connection via the solder.

The type of battery you're connecting to will make an important difference, especially if it is a factory style wet cell unit that will off-gas hydrogen, but even on a sealed batteries you still have a connection that is exposed to the under hood environment and will corrode and oxidize over time. If you properly solder after crimping then while the surface of the solder is still going to oxidize you'll still have a direct connection between the wire and connector terminal and won't be relying on a physical connection between an oxidized wire and an oxidized connector to transfer current.
 

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Well, I have a 50W iron, and I regretted it the second I got home because I should have gotten a butane one to work on the car away from outlets etc. The system works great but I'm not going to get to use it much now. Virginia state inspection regs have got me screwed for now. Couldn't get my car legal today because of tint on windshield and HID lights (no hi-beams) and then they wouldn't even lift it to look under heh. Fuuuccckkk Virginia.
 

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On a side note I wish they did vehicle safety inspections in California. Too many cars dumping HID kits in stock reflector housings that aren't designed to handle light from the much different HID bulbs who end up with worse useable light output and blinding other drivers (the SRT-4 housing are up there with some of the worst). Look at it on the bright side, at least you have an excuse to upgrade to stock bulbs or a true projector or bi-xenon retrofit that will improve your light output dramatically. :thumbsup:

A 50-watt iron isn't too bad but make sure you have a very large chisel tip. Because it doesn't put out as much heat and because that large of a wire acts like a giant heat sink you'll need heat it up for a while and have to balance not getting it too hot to melt the insulation and hot enough to be able to apply a good amount of solder. With lower wattage irons you'll also only get one chance to get good wetting/coverage so make sure to keep apply solder until you have the desired amount and don't stop until done. Also make sure to pick up a bottle of flux as the rosin in rosin core solder alone won't be enough and a good liquid flux will help in transferring heat and getting everything up to temp faster in addition to removing oxidation on the surfaces for a better connection.

If you have a larger iron it will work better and a torch can also work if you're careful to wrap the insulation of the wire with a heat resistant material so you don't burn it. For mobile work away from my Pace soldering station I normally have a smaller 30-watt Weller iron for general electrical work on my cars and an older 100-watt with giant tip for the rare occasions when I need to solder larger gauge wires.

One other suggestion if you're away from an outlet and doing work in the car that works is to pick up a power inverter that works well with lower wattage irons. It's also handy to pick one that comes with alligator clips that can be powered right of the battery if you're doing electrical work on the car and need to disconnect it and can't use the cigarette lighter.
 

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compression style crimpers coupled with seamless connectors and some weatherproof heat shrink is the hot ticket and provides an indestructible mechanical connection. the crimp is basically cold welded and the longevity of the connection is never in question. Solder yields an extremely poor mechanical connection, especially in the automotive/marine environment. soldering also makes flexible wire solid, which makes it more prone to vibration-based damage, something that should be a main concern in an automotive environment.

a properly crimped metal to metal bond is air tight and good enough to never corrode where it matters leaving no chance for increased resistance over time. any corrosion to the outside non conducting area of the cable is a good thing since it forms a layer of protection for the wire (this is the reason why copper is used on paint for the bottom of ships and why your copper water pipes don't waste away). there is a reason that orgainizations such as at&t, the DoD (dept of defense), the FAA and the SAE (society of automotive engineers) as well as UL all only endorse using crimped connections. if you sell to, manufacture for, do repair under their jurisdiction, or seek their underwriting approval you forbidden from soldering flexible wires in a crimp terminal.

when done properly a crimp connection will always outperform a soldered connection. period.
 

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We're talking this application with commonly available fittings like what was included with his wiring kit and as I already stated the crimp would provide the mechanical strength while the soldering will help keep a better electrical connection in this environment when using these specific terminals. The connection between a large gauge stranded copper wire with one of these common ring terminals where the crimp is usually done with a pair of pliers or at best a $10 wire stripper/crimper combo is not going to be air tight even with a good sealing heat shrink tube and the strands very well could oxidize over time.

If someone wants to invest in better terminals and a proper crimper it would be well worth it. For those that don't I personally wouldn't be too comfortable with a so-so crimp on an open-ended terminal over time which is why I recommend filling in the end with solder (and not wicking it back under the insulation, which if you're concerned with vibration and mechanical wear breaking strands is probably still going to occur due to the wire not being properly supported when leaving this terminal).
 

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We're talking this application with commonly available fittings like what was included with his wiring kit and as I already stated the crimp would provide the mechanical strength while the soldering will help keep a better electrical connection in this environment when using these specific terminals. The connection between a large gauge stranded copper wire with one of these common ring terminals where the crimp is usually done with a pair of pliers or at best a $10 wire stripper/crimper combo is not going to be air tight even with a good sealing heat shrink tube and the strands very well could oxidize over time.

If someone wants to invest in better terminals and a proper crimper it would be well worth it. For those that don't I personally wouldn't be too comfortable with a so-so crimp on an open-ended terminal over time which is why I recommend filling in the end with solder (and not wicking it back under the insulation, which if you're concerned with vibration and mechanical wear breaking strands is probably still going to occur due to the wire not being properly supported when leaving this terminal).


for under $10 you can get the crimper i listed above and do anything from 8g to 2/0g. solder is actually a very poor conductor of electricity and very brittle mate.
 

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A battery lug or industrial type crimper? With a serrated/grooved internal surface on the terminal and that type of crimper I'd normally prefer to use multi-stranded wire with thicker gauge individual strands like what's normally specified for battery/starter/ground use rather than the type of audio power wire used in that kit but it would still work reasonably well.

Now to a couple of your points on solder. When you have proper wetting of solder it forms an intermolecular connection or bond between the solder and the base metal. When that occurs you have created a solid, complete electrical connection that has metallic continuity and it not subject to surface oxidation occurring and degrading mating surfaces when only a physically connection is used.

Solder is also a perfectly fine conductor for use in electronics. If you're looking for the very best electrical conductivity with lowest electrical resistivity both copper and silver are better than gold but you can't just go off those specs alone when deciding a material to use for cabling material, circuit cards construction and components, or soldering. The material has to be appropriate for the intended use or application and that can include factors like cost, easy of assembly/manufacturing, electrical, mechanical, and thermal characteristics and so on.

If we went of electrical conductivity alone you would use copper for the terminals and pins in electronic connectors vice gold. Now if the surfaces of those pins were perfectly clean it would work better than gold, but the copper oxidizes very quickly while gold does not, so over time you'd maintain a better connection with gold-plated or even bronze pins (which has slightly worse electrical conductivity that pure copper but is less prone to oxidation.)

To go along with that, when choosing a type of wire, while pure copper has slightly better electrical conductivity than solder alloys, from an electrical standpoint it is still preferable to have pre-tinned copper strands (which have a coating of solder plating on the vice plain copper strands) in a multi-stranded wire for the similar reasons. While both materials will oxidize over time the copper does so much faster and resistance can degrade more than the tinned stranded wire.

Solder itself is not brittle unless it has been contaminated with other materials like copper or gold such as what can happen in solder pots. You can also have a soldered connection that cracks and could be presumed to be "brittle" but that's usually from improper application or rework (such as overheating, not applying to a properly activated surface that is free of oxidation/corrosion and other debris, etc.) or by trying to solder to certain materials such as gold (which is why I'd normally avoid the type of battery ring terminal in this thread but if you have a good mechanical crimp they can still be effectively soldered and for an application like this shouldn't cause and future problems).
 

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i said my peace, you can do anything you want. a proper crimp will always outperform a soldered connection. anything that anyone does half-assed will not last, but if you are going to do it you may as well do it right the first time.
 

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Discussion Starter #37
OK so the weather is getting warmer....for those of us that live in places where seasons actually happen....


What are everyone's plans for I.C.E. this year?
 

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Discussion Starter #39
I was bored one day at the shop and finally got around swapping to an MRA-D550 I had from YEARS ago and got my 5.1 setup.


Amazing what that amp/processor did to wake my car back up lol.
 

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yep, they are fun toys. i'm still waiting for my amps to arrive, which are still on backorder until sometime in may (for the 4ch, later for the mono), so i can figure out how to mount them. once i have the amps i will be installing the ms8. depending on the weather and my free time i may throw in an old lp 4ch i have and the ms8 early, but time will tell.

have to fab up some mounts for new tweets (dyn md100). not sure if i am going to modify the sail panel (again) or maybe add them to the a-pillars.

i plan on finishing the corner enclosure i have going now and most likely sell it with the buyer's choice of a couple 8s i have or empty. i got it 80% done so i may as well finish it but i don't think i am going to be happy with the results of the single 8. i'm running the sundown sa8 right now, and while it gets stupid loud for an 8 on 600 it isn't the sound i am looking for. i will try it with the other 8 when i finish but i don't have high hopes. probably going to build another one and try an idq10 in there.
 
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