Introduction: E-Textile Jumper Wires for Snaps

About: Sophia Brueckner, born in Detroit, MI, is an artist, designer, and engineer. Inseparable from computers since the age of two, she believes she is a cyborg. She recently graduated from the MIT Media Lab and the…

These jumper wires were made as part of an e-textile project with Rachel Freire. To debug finicky, fabric traces, we used these jumper wires to get a strong, secure connections between circuit boards that are snapped on fabric. You could also use these with Floras that have snap connectors.

See Plusea and Rachel for more instructables on e-textiles.

Step 1: Tools and Materials


Soldering iron

Heat gun

Wire strippers


Daburn flexible silicon wire (

Shrink tubing

Solder wick


Step 2: Soldering

The silicon wire is so soft you can strip the sleeve off with your fingers.

Fold the end of the exposed wires over.

Cut a piece of solder wick and stretch it out a bit to make it wider.

A soldering clamp stand can be useful for holding the wire against the piece of solder wick.

Solder the wire to the solder wick. If hot enough, the solder wick will suck up a lot of solder to make a sturdy connection.

Step 3: Shrink Tube

Cut a piece of shrink tubing and slip it over the wire.

Push the tubing over the soldered connection leaving enough solder wick exposed to squeeze between the snaps.

A soldering clamp stand is useful to prevent burns.

Heat the shrink tubing with the heat gun. The silicon on the wire won't melt.

Repeat with the other end of the wire if you like.

Step 4: Snap Connectors

It can help to use a pencil or something similar to make a small hole in the center of the solder wick.

Sandwich the solder wick between the two sides of the snaps to make the connection.