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Weather pack help

Rustytruck

Bronco Guru
Joined
Feb 24, 2002
Messages
10,702
I am stumped on weather pack connectors. i have a very involved wiring project and I want to plan in for weather pack connectors. I know nothing about them at all. I know I need a kit to do this and I see people complaining about the expense and the quality issues with foreign parts. I don't know enough to make good decisions here. On the buggy everything is exposed to the environment. which is why I want to use weather pack connectors. No garage for protection. this all seems expensive but I don't want to waste money and time with starting off with junk and having to do a do over. I just want the proper tools and decent quality components. Please point me in the right direction. any help is greatly appreciated.
 

Oldtimer

Contributor
Jr. Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2005
Messages
135
Rusty,

Attached is the Weather Pack section of Delphi catalog.
I have had good results buying parts from waytek wire or mouser.
If you search on weather pack part numbers you can find complete connector kits (M,F, plugs and pins & seals) online.
Definitely buy a Delphi 12014254 crimper, not a knock off Economy tool.
Weather Pack max wire size is 12ga, so you may need to look at Metri-Pack 630 connectors for power and relay connectors.

Also look at https://www.customconnectorkits.com/wp-products/
 

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pcf_mark

Bronco Guru
Joined
Jun 11, 2010
Messages
3,411
I have only used OEM parts they are far and away superior. I am also trying to do thinks cheap. I go to a yard and find a truck then just take the entire harness I can easily cutout. I then cut what I need cut off the end I need from that harness (or the others I picked up on previous trips) . Then I buy a bulk box of the Delphi crimp on ends and use the correct crimper. Run your new harness, strip the ends and combine your new Delphi terminals w/ your junkyard ends and seals. Built my entire EFI and 4R70W harness w/o a single splice doing it this way and it looks and last like factory.
 

brewchief

Sr. Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2007
Messages
833
There are a wide variety of sealed automotive type connectors so don't limit yourself to weatherpack stuff.

Spend a bit of time and figure out what you will need for connectors as far as amp rating, wire size and number of connections and start looking at waytek and dell city, mouser is another great place to buy from but i personally find it a bit difficult to navigate their website without part numbers in hand.

If you search high performance wiring you can find some good info online on building true race spec harnesses and then decide if you need it to be at that level or if you can back up a step or two.

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
 
OP
OP
Rustytruck

Rustytruck

Bronco Guru
Joined
Feb 24, 2002
Messages
10,702
Thank you all for the help and tips. its a far cry from spade connectors I am use to using. its a bit daunting at first glance but I really need to be able to disconnect things in major zones like dash, engine transmission and lighting.
Thank you so much.
 

lars

Contributor
Curmudgeon
Joined
Jun 29, 2001
Messages
2,654
As others have mentioned, don't skimp on crimpers. And I advise getting extra terminals, then practice crimping. Tug on the wire after you've made the crimp. Both with your practice terminals and when doing the real thing. That doesn't just apply to Weatherpack and similar connectors. I've made thousands of crimp connections and I sometimes still embarrass myself when the occasional wire pulls out of the terminal.
 

904Bronco

Contributor
Bronco Guru
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Sep 28, 2004
Messages
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Loc.
San Martin, CA
I have started following the Centech directions with weather pack connectors. Just a little solder at the very tip of the wire and connector, to ensure a good connection. Don't do a crap-ton of solder, sort of defeats the purpose and creates another failure point. Buy good crimpers, strippers, etc.
Lars gave me a place he bought electrical tools from and part numbers for said tools he uses for wiring airplanes, and I bought them years ago. Aircraft -someplace you never want a wire failure to happen!
 
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OP
Rustytruck

Rustytruck

Bronco Guru
Joined
Feb 24, 2002
Messages
10,702
Thank You guys very helpful. I ordered good stuff now to lean how to use it when it arrives. much better stuff I would have bought with out you guys help. I really appreciate the advise. when wires have connectors done do you put silicone grease before snapping both sides of the connector together?
 

904Bronco

Contributor
Bronco Guru
Joined
Sep 28, 2004
Messages
5,272
Loc.
San Martin, CA
Thank You guys very helpful. I ordered good stuff now to lean how to use it when it arrives. much better stuff I would have bought with out you guys help. I really appreciate the advise. when wires have connectors done do you put silicone grease before snapping both sides of the connector together?

I haven't used S. grease before on the body seal, but you could... Just a little dab will do yah, don't slather it on.
 

Broncobowsher

Contributor
Total hack
Joined
Jun 4, 2002
Messages
33,189
Solder is to be avoided with weatherpacks. I work with a guy who was at GM way back in the day when they started using weatherpacks (he retires next week, old guy) and they started with solder. But were having wire failures at the connection. The cure was to delete the solder and just crimp. Like how the airline industry does it. I have not had any failures with crimp only in the decade I have been doing it that way.

The only soldering I do on vehicle wiring is stuff like the ground lugs on boat trailer tail lights, combined with heat shrink that has hot glue inside. Those get attached to stainless steel bolts that I weld to the frame as a stud.

As for crimping, there is actually a science to it. The amount of compression to deform the strands into a solid mass, but not too much tostart extruding the wire and reducing the cross section and wire strength
 

1970 Palmer

Full Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
373
I
Solder is to be avoided with weatherpacks. I work with a guy who was at GM way back in the day when they started using weatherpacks (he retires next week, old guy) and they started with solder. But were having wire failures at the connection. The cure was to delete the solder and just crimp. Like how the airline industry does it. I have not had any failures with crimp only in the decade I have been doing it that way.

The only soldering I do on vehicle wiring is stuff like the ground lugs on boat trailer tail lights, combined with heat shrink that has hot glue inside. Those get attached to stainless steel bolts that I weld to the frame as a stud.

As for crimping, there is actually a science to it. The amount of compression to deform the strands into a solid mass, but not too much tostart extruding the wire and reducing the cross section and wire strength

I agree, no solder 99.9% of the time. Solder the diodes inside your alternator.

Crimping is a little bit of a science. Too much, or too little is not good. I would also add that the cross section shape of the wire crimp terminal looks like a capital "C" from the end. You want to place it into your crimp tool supporting the open sides. Then crimp the back side of the "C" into the wire. Kinda hard to verbalize.
 

lars

Contributor
Curmudgeon
Joined
Jun 29, 2001
Messages
2,654
Ratcheting crimpers make all the difference for insulated terminals. Can't over or under crimp. Some info: http://www.aeroelectric.com/articles/CrimpTools/crimptools.html

I have both crimpers noted at the start of that article. The el-cheapos are quicker and easier, especially when I've stuffed my fat body under a tiny aircraft instrument panel and can barely maneuver my arthritic hands into position to make a crimp. A source for said inexpensive crimpers: https://bandc.com/product/pidg-style-crimp-tool/

When doing Weatherpacks or Molex pins (very similar) I use a pair of these: https://bandc.com/product/open-barrel-crimp-tool/
They aren't ideal but with a little practice they work well.

I use these strippers on aircraft (tefzel) wire: https://bandc.com/product/ideal-stripmaster-45-097/
They work great on said aircraft wire; they can be a little fussy on (less standardized) PVC wiring sold by the aftermarket for automotive wiring, but they are ridiculously easy to use.

Lastly for really big crimps (think battery cables) Harbor Freight sells a really cool hydraulic crimper that I'd buy if I did more crimps like that. But I'm actually in the process of trying to do less. This crimper works surprisingly well, though big uninsulated crimps are the one place I will use solder, followed by adhesive lined heat shrink: https://bandc.com/product/impact-crimp-tool/
 

ntsqd

heratic car camper
Joined
Jan 30, 2005
Messages
2,863
Loc.
Upper SoKA
I use one of these for battery cable crimps: https://www.greenlee.com/us/en/k-series-mechanical-crimp-tool-8---1-0-awg-k05-syncro

I started down the path with Weatherpack from waytek and have been happy. I use the Weatherpack crimpers sold by waytek. My friend MotoDave is using MetriPac connectors for his LS in a Scout 80 project. The contact density is better, that is to say that a 4 wire Metripack connector is slightly smaller than a 4 wire Weatherpack connector. Once in a while that becomes important. Metripack is also what most automotive sensors use for their connection. The connector body may be keyed uniquely, but the contacts appear to be normal Metripack contacts.

I solder as a very last resort. It's not that solder is less reliable or less conductive or anything like that; it is that my ability to execute a correct job of soldering is not consistent. I was stranded once in the dark in the middle of BFE on a dirt road halfway between Jawbone Canyon and Inyokern by a failed solder connection. No desire to repeat that.
 
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