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Headphone wiring Answered

So I was trying to do some wiring with headphone jacks, and i must be doing something wrong. I have a speaker that the cord ripped from, and I wanted to attach a new jack, I cut off and stripped both wires, so there was a copper one and a colored one, why dont they work when they touch each other?

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user
LasVegas (author)2007-01-30

Even stripping the insulation from the wires, they still will not make any noise when the touch each other. That's not how speakers work. Do a Google search to find info on how speakers work.

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user

Then why does stereo wiring work like that? And does that mean all the instructables that involve that kind of wiring dont actually work?

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user

Show me an instructable where touching the wires of a speaker makes noise. Perhaps I misunderstood your message. This is why illustrations are so valuable. Your headphone jacks cord will have either two separate cords, each with a center wire and a shield wire, or one cord with two center wires and one shield wire. The shield (wrapped around the centers) is the ground or negative connection. The center wires will each have their own insulation that needs to be stripped off and are the hot or positive connection for each speaker.

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user

https://www.instructables.com/id/EURBLZTW6REPD7QTQK/

Right there, i believe

I will describe as best as I can...

There is a single black wire on mine, once stripped, there is a colored wire and a [what appears to be] copper wire. There is also some white stuff that seems to be insulation.

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user

That instructable said nothing about touching speaker wires to make noise. You need some current source to activate the voice coil (make noise). The center core wire is your positive. The wire(s) that surround the core are your negative. It will not necessarily be copper in color. It's very important that none of the shield will contact the core wire anywhere. BTW: With this fine of wire it's very easy to break the core wire by pulling on it.

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user

But wasn't it saying that you strip the wires and connect them? And then the jack flows noise to the speaker. I'm not trying to be argumentative, just trying to understand. Is the shield the black rubber that you normally see? Which is the copper and which is the colored? Copper - Color +?

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user

The color of the wire means nothing. It only indicates the type of wire used. I've drawn a picture to try to show what you should expect. The loose strands of wire surounding the center wire is your "Ground Shield" and will always be the negitive (-) side of the speaker. The core wires may be color coded on a dual core wire, but don't always follow the same rules. If one is red, it's a good bet that that wire is the Right speaker's positive lead. Otherwise, it's best to test, which is which. I hope this helps.

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user

It does, so what do I do to reconnect the wires...or is it too late?

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user

Simply twist the strands together (remove any white threads) and use them for the negative side of the speaker. The wire center of the core connects to the positive side of the speaker. Neither should ever touch.

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user

Ok, ill try that, thanks. I bet i had the two touching somewhere.

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user
Weissensteinburg (author)2007-01-29

hmm..I burned it off, but its still not working. Any other ideas?

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user

depends on the enamel coating... sometimes a lighter will do it, sometimes it takes a torch, you could give a try to scraping it off... even if you only get a tiny bit of it off, you could solder and make a good connection... also, clean your contacts after burning with rubbing alcohol or "connection cleaner"... even acetone should work

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user

if only i had a soldering iron...i really should get one..that and a dremel. Ill try scraping and usingthe alcohol ;)

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Weissensteinburg (author)2007-01-29

burning it sounds like the most fun :D

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gschoppe (author)2007-01-29

most of the time these wires have an enamel coating... you can often burn it off or take an exacto to it and scrape the coating off. There used to be a dip you could buy that took it right off... any or all of the above are solutions... sometimes even the heat of soldering the wires is enough to get rid of it

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