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Thread: DIY Jumpers

  1. #1

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    Smile DIY Jumpers

    I'm looking to embark on my first DIY project. I saw some nice jumpers on Ebay today and then stumbled upon some bare silver wire and began wondering if I could make my own!

    I imagine at the very least I'd need a jacket of some sort, terminations, and of course the wire itself. Anything else?

    I have no idea where to get the jacket or what to look for. I'm thinking one end banana and one end spade for the terminations. I'm not sure what gauge to order the wire in or how much (though I was thinking 16AWG solid and six inches per wire for a total of 24 inches for a pair of speakers).

    Any advice (even just pointing me in the direction of a good step-by-step guide and shouting "GO!") would be much appreciated.

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    Just get some heat shrink from Home Depot. Jumpers are not hard to make....it's just a U shaped piece of wire and I'd suggest 10g....but 16g would work fine. I like a larger gauge since it crimps easier into the aftermarket termination of choice. I'd round that out with a quick solder to further tighten/seal it all up and you have a really nice jumper at a low cost.
    Last edited by dorokusai; 06-01-2011 at 09:04 PM.

  3. #3

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    +1
    Jumpers are nothing but insulated conductors (many diff. possibilities of course) and terminations which are convenient for you to implement your DIY masterpiece.
    I will be makeing my jumpers out of the same cable I use to power my fronts.
    No need to get too crazy....
    -------------[The Ever-Evolving System -------------

    LSI15's (PNF Symphony cabels, modded X-Over and subs), LSIC, LSI7's, Rega Apollo CDP (PNF ICON ICs, modified PS cct.), Yamaha RXV-1700 w/ ipod dock, B&K REF200.2 (fronts) Samsung BDP-1600, XBOX360, Patriot Box Office Media Player, 42" Samsung LCD.

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    Will heatshrink and the terminations I buy make for a "finished" product or is there some kind of sleeve that should go between those two?

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    You're fine with just using heat shrink but you could also use braided sleeving to dress it up if you wanted. This is totally up to you. I use it when I custom make my computer cables and leads.

    http://www.cabletiesandmore.com/BraidedSleeving.php

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    I just made a shopping list on ebay and did the math and it seems like it would cost me $70-80 to make two pairs of 6" 14AWG silver jumpers with heat shrink, tech flex, and inexpensive silver terminations. I'm not sure the project would be worth it to me at that point....

    Would silver-plated copper give me similar results to solid silver? Any other suggestions?
    Last edited by thetawave2; 06-02-2011 at 08:48 AM.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by thetawave2 View Post
    I just made a shopping list on ebay and did the math and it seems like it would cost me $70-80 to make two pairs of 6" 14AWG silver jumpers with heat shrink, tech flex, and inexpensive silver terminations. I'm not sure the project would be worth it to me at that point....

    Would silver-plated copper give me similar results to solid silver? Any other suggestions?
    Contact Frank at SignalCable. He does custom work and might be able to make you a pair for that price or cheaper since he has the material on hand. That and more than likely the end result will look better (no offense intended)

    He also gives Polk forum members a discount.

  8. #8
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    A few years ago, I made jumpers out of bulk 12AWG wire with cheap banana plugs on each end. Since it was already insulated speaker wires, I didn't dress it up at all, and the whole thing probably cost about $15.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EndersShadow View Post
    Contact Frank at SignalCable. He does custom work and might be able to make you a pair for that price or cheaper since he has the material on hand. That and more than likely the end result will look better (no offense intended)

    He also gives Polk forum members a discount.
    No offense taken! I'm sure his work is very professional.

    Part of the point of this project is the enjoyment of actually doing it myself. I'm not dying to get new cable right now but it would be a lot of fun to make.
    Thanks very much for the referral, though! If in the future I'm looking for some serious cables I'll definitely keep Frank in mind.

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    I found a listing on ebay that seams reasonable, but I was looking for something a bit larger in diameter (16-12AWG).... Would using two or three strands of .8mm insulated wire per cable be a good idea?

    Also, I'm starting to think about scrapping the jumper idea and making full biwire/biamp cables (about 5-6 feet?) using stackable banana plugs (mid/lows copper, highs silver). Is this a better way to go? Will it be a feasable first DIY?

    Furthermore, I won't be doing either project immediately, as I am going abroad for a few weeks in a couple days and then again for the Fall semester. Silver prices seem to have spiked recently. Do you think the project will be significantly less expensive if I just wait for my return home in the winter and hope silver prices go down?
    Last edited by thetawave2; 06-02-2011 at 12:05 PM.

  11. #11

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    Just priced out two sets of six foot bi-wireable cable to under 200 bucks. Not too bad...

    24' 18AWG 99.999% Silver wire - $116
    Heatshrink and Techflex- $5
    8x silver banana connectors - $15
    4x bi-wire cable boots - $15
    25' 12AWG Copper wire - $10
    8x gold stackable banana connectors- $16
    TOTAL: $177

    This might be a fun winter project/ Christmas gift to myself.

  12. #12

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    The more I think about it, the less silver seems worth it to me.

    This isn't the last you'll hear of me in the DIY forum, however!! I've been reading slammin86's thread on DIY cables and apparently the wire he uses is an amazing value. Looks like a fun project with an attractive end result.
    Last edited by thetawave2; 06-02-2011 at 02:01 PM.

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    Go here to see the set I made some years ago: http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...47&postcount=1

    I think it cost about $12 bucks.

    Source: Squeezebox Touch/CIA Power Supply
    DAC: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Linestage: Placette RVC Passive
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Subwoofer: SVS PB12-NSD

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    Quote Originally Posted by steveinaz View Post
    Go here to see the set I made some years ago: http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...47&postcount=1

    I think it cost about $12 bucks.
    Those look really nice! I could definitely see myself making a set of these, even if they eventially just go to my little brother haha

    Any tips you'd like to give a DIY newbie?

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    The banana's are compression type, so they're easy to use. Don't forget to slip your shrink tubing on first. Just strip the wire about a 1/2". Make sure the banana's are the right size for the gauge of wire you want to use. Got all the supplies at Radio Shack, except for the pieces of Monster 12awg I had. If you don't have a heat shrink gun, just use a blow dryer on high/hot.

    You can skip the heat shrink altogether, but I think it gives the jumpers a nice professional touch.
    Last edited by steveinaz; 06-02-2011 at 04:08 PM.

    Source: Squeezebox Touch/CIA Power Supply
    DAC: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Linestage: Placette RVC Passive
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Subwoofer: SVS PB12-NSD

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    Quote Originally Posted by thetawave2 View Post
    No offense taken! I'm sure his work is very professional.

    Part of the point of this project is the enjoyment of actually doing it myself. I'm not dying to get new cable right now but it would be a lot of fun to make.
    Thanks very much for the referral, though! If in the future I'm looking for some serious cables I'll definitely keep Frank in mind.
    No problem. I ordered a set of SignalCable Analog 2's and am very happy with them

  17. #17

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    Thanks for the help, steveinaz! I think I've got the terminations and heat shrink all picked out. Gonna wait a bit before I buy because I won't be home for a few weeks.
    I'll let you know how it turns out :)

  18. #18

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    you bet bubba.

    Source: Squeezebox Touch/CIA Power Supply
    DAC: Benchmark DAC/PRE
    Linestage: Placette RVC Passive
    Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
    Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
    Subwoofer: SVS PB12-NSD

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