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Hot![Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables!

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Martin S
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2010/09/26 15:36:22 (permalink)
Many of you may have seen my guide to "Make and sleeve your own extension cables!" - this is a revamp of it, with new pictures, a clearer format, and links to get all the things you will need. Enjoy! :)
 
1. Tools
 

 


  • Heat gun - $23 at Amazon
  • Molex Mini Fit Jr Crimper - 29€ at MDPC-X
  • Wire stripper - $13 at Amazon
  • Wire cutter - $12 at Amazon
  • Scissors - $5 at Amazon
  • Lighter - $5 at your local convenience store
 
2. Materials
 




  • 18 AWG stranded wire - McMaster.com (part # 7587K951) ($0.15 / foot)
  • Molex Mini Fit Jr female contacts - MDPC-X (3€ / 50x)
  • Molex Mini Fit Jr male contacts - MDPC-X (3€ / 50x)
  • Molex Mini Fit Jr male and female housings/connectors - Performance PCs ( $1 / ea.)
  • MDPC-X SMALL cable sleeve -  MDPC-X (7€ / 33 ft)
  • MDPC-X SMALL heatshrink - MDPC-X (2€ / 3.3 ft)
 
3. Process
 
For the sake of this guide, we'll be doing a 12" 6pin PCIE extension. You can apply the techniques in this to all the extensions with Mini-Fit Jr housings (24pin, 8pin, 6+2pin, 6pin).

Start off by cutting the wire at 12" intervals. When they're all cut, find the shortest wire and cut them all to be exactly that length. Even the slightest variation in wire length will make one appear to "bulge", so it's best to make sure they are even while it's still easy to adjust.
 


Next, strip off 3mm on each end of each wire.


 
Now it's time to crimp the contacts onto the ends of the wires. My crimping method may differ from others', but it has held up for over 4000 crimps, so here it is:
 
First, put the female contact (the squared one) face up in the crimper, and close it until it clicks once. This will hold the contact in place, freeing up your other hand. If you used wire from a spool, you'll notice that it forms a "C" when cut (see above picture). Take the top end of the "C" and insert it as far as it goes into the pin in the crimper. Finish closing the crimper until it opens. Then insert the male contact (the pointed one) face up into the crimper, and close to hold it in place. Grab the bottom end of the "C" (if the already crimped contact is face up, this bottom end should be not be crimped), and insert it flat into the crimper. It is important to make sure that the already-crimped pin is facing up while you crimp this pin. Otherwise the wire would have to twist from one connector to the other.
 


When you buy MDPC-X sleeve and heatshrink, Nils will provide you with an excellent sleeving guide. I won't attempt making a better one. So once your sleeve arrives, follow Nils' guide to sleeve your wires. Then insert the first wire's FEMALE contact into its corresponding housing/connector. Find another wire that has exactly the same distance from the end of the heatshrink to the end of the sleeving, and insert it into a spot next to the first wire. Continue around the connector in this same fashion. This will ensure the heatshrink segments are even. Insert the opposite ends into their corresponding spots on the other connector (such that when the two ends are connected, each wire will connect to itself). If the heatshrink-evenness is still less than satisfactory, cut off the offending segments and re-shrink until you are happy with it.
 
These are some examples of extensions I've made, using the techniques emphasized in this guide:
 






 
(Sorry for the watermarks, but it has come to my attention that certain people are taking my photos, reuploading them, and claiming them as their own... )
 
Any and all feedback is appreciated, and if you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask!
post edited by Crys1s_Gam3r - 2010/11/23 19:45:32
#1

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    _MatthewH
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/26 15:37:12 (permalink)
    +1, first, and BR worthy!
    post edited by EVGATech_MatthewH - 2010/09/26 15:43:01

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    raw2dogmeat
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/26 15:53:06 (permalink)
    Great guide, you helped me out alot along the way starting about a year ago, sleeving is/will always be time consuming, but it gets easier with lots of practice. I'm putting the finishing touches on my latest rig, hopefully have pictures up in the next few days...came out as one of my best I think, it's all about the sleeving!
     

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    Martin S
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/26 16:07:52 (permalink)
    Thanks for the BR Matthew!
     
    Glad to hear I was of some help raw2dogmeat
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    realmad37
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/26 16:32:45 (permalink)
    Awesome guide man! When I get spare money I'm definitely gonna make some extensions, but for now since I don't have money to blow on most likely a one-time project I won't be doing, but this guide is definitely BR worthy

     
    #5
    sabre22
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/26 18:00:34 (permalink)
    Excellent write up Martin! Nice photography too 
    #6
    I_Know_God
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/26 21:51:31 (permalink)
    great post, pictures are crisp as can be




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    Squat500
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/27 22:07:30 (permalink)
    Great revamp for sure. I would like to ask, with only $4 per 100Ft more, would it be better to use solid copper conductor, or is tinned stranded copper the best option. Since the cables will not move much, if ever once installed, flexibility seems like a non issue.
    Basically, Part# 8073K671 compared to 7587K951.
     
    Also, for pins, is there any benefit going gold plated? Seems like if someone is going to spend the time and effort (and money) to sheath cables, it is worth the little extra to have great pins.
    post edited by Squat500 - 2010/09/27 22:16:33

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    #8
    Martin S
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/28 18:05:13 (permalink)
    Thanks Lubomir, feel free to posts pics here when you're done
     
    Thank you Will
     
    Hunter: thanks!
     
    Rich, using solid conductor for extensions is not something I have personally explored, but feel free to try that out and post back your findings. One potential caveat, though, would be the added difficulty in crimping... I am not sure how that would work out. Good luck! If you are so concerned about voltage drop/stability, that you would use gold-pins rather than tin-plated, I would think that you would also want to stay away from extensions/modular cables. In theory there is a very very slight drop in voltage when using extensions, however in real-life situations it is virtually non-existent.
     
    Hope that helped out some.
    #9
    mewandwing
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/28 20:43:59 (permalink)
    Do you guys' know? What company makes the sleeving that MDPC-X sells?
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    realmad37
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/28 21:43:32 (permalink)
    Crys1s_Gam3r
    Thanks Lubomir, feel free to posts pics here when you're done


    Oh mah Gawd! How did you know mah namez? Yeah those pics will take quite a while to make since I ain't got no green

     
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    Suicidalgi
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/29 12:03:36 (permalink)
    Awesome guide Martin.

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    Squat500
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/09/29 15:05:07 (permalink)
    realmad37

    Crys1s_Gam3r
    Thanks Lubomir, feel free to posts pics here when you're done


    Oh mah Gawd! How did you know mah namez? Yeah those pics will take quite a while to make since I ain't got no green


    Really? Just click your name. It links to whatever info is public.
    As for green, it will come around eventually.
     
    Also, i have tried some solid vs stranded things, and really only noticed that the difference was the ease of crimping. No benefit i could detect with my limited testing equipment (12V battery and a voltage detector). No to try soldering the braided and crimping while soft. That should make it much stiffer, beneficial in large 8 pin sockets to reduce movement of the pins.

    ANY OF MY POSTS ARE RESEARCHED AND/OR COMPILED BITS OF INFORMATION* AND YOU SHOULD FOLLOW THEM AT YOUR OWN RISK.
    I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY LOSS OR DAMAGE OF LIFE AND LIMB, PROPERTY, DATA OR ANYTHING ELSE.  YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THIS BY READING ANYTHING I POST.


     
    *EXCLUDING SARCASTIC AND OR SUBJECTIVE RESPONSES.

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    Halfdead14
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/10/18 09:27:37 (permalink)
    Great guide! Thanks for sharing.
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    tet5uo
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/10/18 12:48:29 (permalink)
    Is it weird to become slightly aroused when viewing photos of sleeved cables?
    #15
    Sum1uNo83
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/10/18 13:59:32 (permalink)
    nice sleeving job. i may just contract my build for clients out to you for sleeving, so i dont have to spend the time on it myself.

                                           
                                                               
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    realmad37
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/10/18 15:40:56 (permalink)
    Squat500

    realmad37

    Crys1s_Gam3r
    Thanks Lubomir, feel free to posts pics here when you're done


    Oh mah Gawd! How did you know mah namez? Yeah those pics will take quite a while to make since I ain't got no green

    Really? Just click your name. It links to whatever info is public.

    I was being sarcastic

     
    #17
    Martin S
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/10/18 20:14:48 (permalink)
    Thanks for all the feedback, much appreciated.
    #18
    XrayMan
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/10/18 20:16:22 (permalink)
    Just noticed this. Great job!       

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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/11/12 15:12:17 (permalink)
    Nice braiding Martin,i have some coming from nils in a few days so im going to give it a go,i have read the guide he sent me but im a bit confused about how to cut the braid to the correct length when its on the cable as i want both ends to look the same if i can do it any tip`s on how to measure  and cut?
    Thanks.

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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/11/12 16:22:19 (permalink)
    Incredible work as always!

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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2010/11/23 18:06:37 (permalink)
    uuummmm wheres the BR >>> >>  best guide to sleevin period....!!

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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2011/02/06 12:50:54 (permalink)
    dillon

    uuummmm wheres the BR >>> >>  best guide to sleevin period....!!



    #23
    emepror
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2011/02/06 17:20:26 (permalink)
    thank you VERY much for this guide (and sorry for adding to the necro :P but it was needed)
     
    i cannot wait for the point when i can afford to do my own sleeving, ill probably end up participating in a group buy to lower costs 

     

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    #24
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2011/02/06 19:09:47 (permalink)
    emepror

    thank you VERY much for this guide (and sorry for adding to the necro :P but it was needed)

    i cannot wait for the point when i can afford to do my own sleeving, ill probably end up participating in a group buy to lower costs 


    I'm all for it.  Where's the sign-up list?
    #25
    Stuey 1122
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2011/02/06 20:14:06 (permalink)
    Looks like I've got a summer project.
    #26
    daveyd007
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2011/02/27 20:25:15 (permalink)
    Awesome guide! Stellar photography skills too!!

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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2011/02/28 13:36:50 (permalink)
    Nice guide, is there any videos you have that specifically show how to crimp with these cables?

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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2011/03/05 20:37:21 (permalink)
    so 18 guage wire is the standard for power supplies?
    and is 1/8" sleeving the same as the mdpc "small" size?

     
     
    #29
    MSim
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    Re:[Revamped Guide] Make your own extension cables! 2011/03/06 09:46:24 (permalink)
    You forgot the most important thing, have patience. You will need it if you want the same results. 
     
    Does MDPC-X make the sleeving or do they just resell it?

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