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I need some feedback on connectors

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by mudmin, Jan 5, 2016.

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  1. mudmin


    Jan 5, 2016
    I'm looking to see what you electronics gurus have to say. I'm building a project that basically uses microswitches (think arcade momentary contact switches) that are going to be located around 15 feet from the controller that houses my keyboard to USB controller. Mt external boxes will have between 1 switch (2 wires) and 10 switches (11 wires, commonly grounded) that I need to get back to the control box.

    I'm totally willing to use a different style connector depending on the application. It doesn't need to be shielded. It's just a simple continuity circuit.

    These are my needs:
    1. I'd like the cables to be readily available if one breaks.
    2. I'd prefer the cables to be stranded so they can have some flex.
    3. I'd like to keep the cost relatively low as an assembly (the connector on either end of the run plus cable).
    4. I'd like the cables to be able to withstand a fair amount of plugging and unplugging as this thing will be setup and taken down relatively often.
    5. I need some sort of way to mount the connector to the project (think "panel mount"). I'd rather not put standard single gang household plates on the side of the project. I'd really like to be able to buy a panel mount connector or make one (if it's round or regular shaped).

    Here are my initial thoughts.
    2 wires - Use either 1/8" or RCA jacks and wires.
    3-8 wires - Use Ethernet/ RJ45
    9-15 wires - Use DB15HD (VGA) connectors and cables

    BUT...I'd like to know what YOU guys would use in this situation. I come from the AV/PC fields so my mind naturally goes there. I've thought about things like MIDI cables etc. I'm open to suggestions. Thanks for your time!
    Merlin3189 likes this.
  2. Martaine2005


    May 12, 2015
    Hi Mudmin,
    You could look at the DB 25 connector. Or complete parallel cable..
    They are used for the old parallel ports.
    Then you have a couple of extra terminals for future add-ons..
  3. KJ6EAD


    Aug 13, 2011
    Why not use the tried and true methods and materials that arcade game manufacturers have used for decades, standard .25" female disconnects crimped on 22 AWG stranded hookup wire for the switch ends of the harness and a Molex .062" multi-pin connector at the panel end.
  4. mudmin


    Jan 5, 2016
    I probably should have been a little clearer about that. The connections I'm talking about are between the enclosure that holds the buttons and the enclosure that holds the logic board. They're going to be 10-15 feet apart. It's not a matter of connecting the internal parts, although I would like to know your sources for molex style connectors and things like that for my internal connections.
  5. AnalogKid


    Jun 10, 2015
    OK except for this one. The VGA connector is a high-density D-subminiature, and the pins sometimes wiggle around enough to miss the sockets. Better to use a game port (joystick port) cable - same 15 pins in the next larger body size, with the pin spacing and ruggedness of a 9-pin serial.

    Note that with a 1/8" inch plug/jack, the wires are shorted together during insertion and extraction.

    Last edited: Jan 6, 2016
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