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Author Topic: Using heat shrink tubing  (Read 906 times)
KB6VIV
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Posts: 195




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« on: July 22, 2007, 02:39:43 PM »

I want to use some heat shrink tubing to tidy up some of my wiring, but it seems that heat shrink tubing heaters are a little expensive.  Not horribly expensive, but after all of the other things I've bought for this hobby, I'm starting get a little visa fatigue.  A butane cigarette lighter works, but I'd hate to set my wiring on fire.  Can I get some suggestions on how to shrink my tubing without buying yet another expensive tool?  Hair dryer doesn't seem to work.

KB6VIV
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KG6R
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« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2007, 03:02:09 PM »

There are some on ebay for $17.00

73 de KG6R,

Jim
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WA4BLM
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Posts: 2




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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2007, 03:03:42 PM »

I use a heat gun I got from Harbor Freight:

http://search.harborfreight.com/cpisearch/web/search.do?keyword=heat+gun&Submit=Go

Currently on sale for $10 with the accessory kit another $7 if you want.

John WA4BLM
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WT0A
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Posts: 922




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« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2007, 03:15:55 PM »

some hair driers will work, if you can choke down the amount of air it will be hotter.
Glen
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VA7IC
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Posts: 72




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« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2007, 03:22:32 PM »

Did you think about using "Split Loom" instead of heatshrink?  It keeps things neat and tidy.  If you ever want to remove or add wires you can do so very easily.  This is what I use for all of my commercial installations to keep wiring neat and tidy.
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W9XAN
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« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2007, 04:01:58 PM »

I have been using a butane lighter for many years, you just want to apply it with a very light touch ... keep the tip of the flame a minimum of 3/4 inch away, and keep it moving back and forth, remember you are trying to heat the tubing, not light it.
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K4SAV
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« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2007, 05:20:56 PM »

You're right, a hair dryer doesn't work very well. Use the right tool for the job.  Get the Harbor Freight heat gun $10.  How cheap can you get?
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KB6VIV
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Posts: 195




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« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2007, 05:20:59 PM »

Thanks Elmers,

I just ordered the one from Harbor Freight.  Elmers comes through again.

Dana
KB6VIV
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KB9CRY
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« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2007, 06:57:37 PM »

Scotch 33 works great also.
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N6AJR
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« Reply #9 on: July 22, 2007, 07:58:38 PM »

in the service we we used something that looked like dental floss, and we laced all of our cables
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K9KJM
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« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2007, 11:10:15 PM »

The Harbor Freight heat guns work great. When ordering dont forget to get a sleeve of the great plastic electric tape from Harbor Freight also!!!!  GOOD stuff!!!!!   http://ww2.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Category.taf?categoryid=402&pricetype=S&categoryname=TAPE
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K0BG
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« Reply #11 on: July 23, 2007, 05:22:39 AM »

If you need one for small jobs, here's a suggestion.

Hobby Lobby sells what they call an embossing heater. It is rather light, about 10 inches long, and about 2.5 inches in diameter. It sells for $20.

The big one from Harbor is nice for the big jobs like coax sleeves, and I have a similar one I bought at a tool show for that task. Nonetheless, next time you're close to a Hobby Lobby, have a look, and most likely you'll come home with one.

Alan, KØBG
www.k0bg.com
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WA3SKN
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« Reply #12 on: July 23, 2007, 06:09:08 AM »

Gee, I normally just use the barrel of my soldering iron!
But, I would probably use something other that heat shrink for lacing wires. Something easier to remove and replace... velcro, cable ties, string lacing, etc.
Just a thought.

-Mike.
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KF4WXD
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Posts: 52




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« Reply #13 on: July 23, 2007, 01:07:28 PM »

I just finished up a big gov't LAN project.  Our wiring subcontrators were supplied with and required to use velcro tape.  I am a convert to it.  Easy to use, easy to make chaneges and easy to re-use.

Russ
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NA0AA
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Posts: 1043




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« Reply #14 on: July 23, 2007, 05:29:55 PM »

I use shrink tubing for splices and such but not for wiring looms.

for holding wiring together I'm a huge fan of "rip-ties" which are double sided velcro - easy to apply and reusable.

I used to use zip-ties but they get expensive when you change the wire so often.

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