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Old 27th August 2004, 03:08 PM   #1
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Question Soldering replacement miniplug on headphones

Greetings,

I use ear bud type headphones for listing to music while running. I got a new MP3 player for Christmas last year & now have gone through 2 sets of ear buds--the wire breaks connection near the base of plug. I still trying to figure out why it breaks (strain--I know) but I am interested in how to replace the plug.

I cut the very thin wire & it has 2 main sections--1 has a copper colored set of wires & a green coated copper wires. The other has the same copper colored & a red colored one. The thing that gets me is that they are not isolated--they touch! I assume that the red & green (R & L channels) wires are coated in some way to prevent shorting out. The copper colored ones may also be coated similarly.

I got replacement miniplugs at RS & tried to solder 1 on last night. All the wire didn't seem to want to take up the solder very well. I ended up getting it to work, but it would cut out if I touched the wire--I assumed I was moving the wire/solder off the plug. Anyways, I de-soldered & am asking here if anyone has some advice on how to do this right. Is the coating on the wire mucking up the soldering?

Thanks in advance,
Bret Morrow
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Old 27th August 2004, 03:48 PM   #2
Nisbeth is offline Nisbeth  Denmark
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The wires are coated with a lacquer that is extremely difficult to remove. You can try very carefully to burn it off with an open flame like a cigarette lighter.


/U.
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Old 27th August 2004, 06:14 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by Nisbeth
The wires are coated with a lacquer that is extremely difficult to remove. You can try very carefully to burn it off with an open flame like a cigarette lighter.
/U.
Thanks!

Any idea what type of lacquer it might be? Or better yet, what solvent may take it off? I'll try the flame tonight. I'm thinking of replacing the entire wire to the "speakers" in the ear buds with something more substantial, but it maybe annoying while running. Thanks again.

Cheers,
Bret Morrow
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Old 28th August 2004, 01:58 AM   #4
Stocker is offline Stocker  United States
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There was a thread about this very subject not more than a few months ago, with many good methods suggested.
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Old 28th August 2004, 04:18 AM   #5
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Default Any clues on a link?

Well, I search the archives with no success. I tried all sorts of combinations of the following keywords: solder, failure, shellac, miniplug, and others. I even the colors red & green--thinking that these colors of lacquer may be universal since the 2 pairs of ear buds I have both use those colors. No luck at all. Some like solder get you some many hits that they are useless--the more specific searches didn't find anything. Do you remember any specifics that might be helpful.

Cheers,
Bret Morrow
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Old 28th August 2004, 04:27 AM   #6
Stocker is offline Stocker  United States
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The magic is in the keywords.

Soldering Nifty Headphone Wires

Soldering nifty headphone wires.
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Old 1st September 2004, 06:37 PM   #7
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Wink Ahhhhhhh.......

Quote:
Originally posted by Stocker
The magic is in the keywords.

Soldering Nifty Headphone Wires

Soldering nifty headphone wires.
I never even thought to try the keyword "nifty"

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Old 2nd September 2004, 01:16 AM   #8
Stocker is offline Stocker  United States
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Cheers!
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Old 2nd September 2004, 09:20 AM   #9
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I find that the lacquer does melt with heat - you have to pre-tin the wires and hold the iron on the wires for longer than soldering normal wires, and the solder will eventually flow. I think another part of the problem is fine fibreglass / cotton (??) strengthening strands are also present.

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