How to Crimp a Network Cable With a Victorinox Swiss Army Knife

The need is the mother of the creativity. As a Support Technician, many situations make me try some unusual ways to solve troubles. This one is a good sample, when I need to crimp a CAT5 network cable in a Bank here in Brazil, but I haven't my crimper tool with me. My Victorinox Tinker is always on my pocket, so I try to do the task only with it and works very well! MacGyver will be proud about me! ;)

So, it is one more Instructable for all of you, my friends of this website, and as in all my Instructbles, I'm sorry about English Language mistakes, ok?

Please give me your comments!

With Best Regards!


Step 1: The Material List

To do this job, you only need:

- 01 Swiss Army Knife with a blade, can opener and bottle opener. The most basic Victorinox models have those implements (Tinker, Camper, Spartan, etc.)
- RJ45 connectors
- Network (like Furukawa) cable.

Step 2: Step One: Peeling the Cable

Take 2 or 3 centimeters of the cable and with the blade, cut it out, taking care to do not cut the internal coloured strings.

Step 3: Step Two: Separe the Color Sequence

Now you must to make the color sequence for your cable. For standard, we in Brazil use the two sides as:

White Green / Green
White Orange / Blue
White Blue/ Orange
White Brown / Brown

If you need a cross cable, one side must folow the sequence above and the other side must be:

White Orenge / Orange
White Green / Blue
White Blue / Green
White Brown / Brown

This is the standard used here. I don't know the standard used in other places, so please be sure to the standard used in your place, ok?

Step 4: Step Three: Cutting the Strings

Now you must to cut the strings, in order to make your crimping easy.

On a hard surface, press the blade over the strings and cut, leaving 1 to 1,5 centimeters to crimp.

Step 5: Step Four: Place the Cable on the Connector

Now you need to place the cable on the connector. Just look to the metal connectors and place the cable inside, using the same sequence of colors.

White green on the first connector
Green on the second
White orange on the third
Blue on the fourth
White blue on the fifth
Orange on the sixth
White brown on the seventh
Brown on the eighth

Or using your local standard.

Be sure that each string goes until the end of the connector. Only one string that not reach the end can be a trouble for your work.

Step 6: Step Five: Crimping the Cable

Now is the hard work. Use the can opener top (on Victorinox models it have a small screwdriver on it) and push strongly each connector in, in order to make it bypass each string. Do it with each of the eight connectors. After place each connector down, look each one to see if all are in the same line.

Be sure to do not brake the plastic around the connectors.

Step 7: Step Six: Fix the Cable on the Connector

Now take the bottle opener and place it on the down part of the connector where is the piece that will fix the cable. Push strongly the piece down with the bottle opener.

Step 8: Done!

You have now a crimped network cable with your Swiss Army Knife. Pull softly the connector and the cable to ensure that it is well crimped and fixed.

Now, just plug and use it!

Thank you for read more this Instructable and I hope it can help you in your IT emergency needs!

Again, please place your comments about this instructable!

Best Regards!

Cesar Scavone



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    26 Discussions


    10 years ago on Introduction

    I've always used a slightly different order and your instructable made me wonder why. The reason is I use EIA/TIA 568B whereas you are using EIA/TIA 568A where the greens and the oranges are swapped. (I love standards - there's always so many to choose from ;¬)
    Here's a LINK to the detail.

    3 replies

    Poland, Europe here: I see almost exclusively 568B (and A for cross-over cables, but with auto-MDIX in modern devices it's no longer necessary).


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    Here in the states we use A for residential and B for commercial installs. I got all confused when I started a new job and they had a crazy wiring scheme (568B). As long as their terminated the same on both sides it will work, not to say it wont confuse someone else when they see you did something crazy. This is an AWESOME tutorial BTW.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for this.
    I had purchased a network cable of about 15m length but my computer refused to connect to the internet via the cable - "Low or no connectivity". I talked to the guy from whom I had purchased it and he opined that it might be due to the length. So, I bought some RJ45 connectors, cut the cable to about 5m. One side already had the connector so I just crimped the other side.
    I used the following wire pairing though -

    Orange / Whit Orange
    Green / White Green
    Blue / White Blue
    Brown/ White Brown

    I was confused with all the standards and stuff and so I just mirrored the pairings that were on the other side, the one where the RJ45 connector was still intact.
    I reasoned that it the connection works - good, otherwise I'd cut out both the connectors and re-crimp them using your pairing scheme. Luckily the connection is working.
    Any reason why we use different pairings schemes when the simple scheme that I used also works?

    2 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    The error in network connectivity isn't because the length of the cable. Companies send network access via RJ45 between floors of distance, running inside tubes inside the walls (sometimes, some hundreds of meters are used to link a desktop to a server or network station). So, if the connection worked after new crimp, the original one may be failed.

    Color Schemes are not important at all, since inside colored wires are only coper strings, so despite the color scheme used, since it is the same in both sides, you have connection (as parallel cable... for data transfer you need to invert some pairs, to build a cross cable).

    I'm happy they your connection is running! Enjoy!

    Connectivity errors have various causes; sometimes the physical layer (i.e. electronics and cables) is perfectly OK, but there is a problem with the data link layer (switches, MAC addresses) or network layer (IP configuration, routing, firewalls, DHCP, DNS etc.). Or a network is well-secured against connecting just anything, and a router or smart switch won't let devices with unknown MAC addresses to connect.

    So, no connection doesn't necessarily mean that the cable is wrong. The first thing to test is whether LEDs on the network interface card are lit up... if so, the physical link is probably OK and it's time to look deeper. Packet sniffers etc. come to my mind.

    BTW, different pairs are twisted with different pitches (i.e. one has more twists per length than the other), and this influenced a so called wave impedance of a pair. With short 10/100Mbps cables it doesn't matter so much, but with longer runs (50...100m) and gigabit ethernet, bandwidth can be limited.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you very much for giving this information with images to help us. I found this information about How to make Ethernet cable by self,

    It good to provide us help to making many thing by using our selves.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you!!! It was so easy with this tool ( I have exactly the same knife :) ). I crimped an RJ11 connector. It worked too!


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Oi Cesar,

    Adorei o instruct. Achei genial a sua solução e já adotei para emergências, pois também já estive na mesma situação.
    E fico feliz de encontrar um brasileiro aqui.

    1 reply

    Legal Teodoro!

    Sabe que esta foi uma situação que ocorreu não apenas uma vez. Por causa de mau uso, cabos de rede são geralmente os primeiros a apresentar defeito, principalmente em terminais de acesso público, como caixas eletrônicos, lan houses e totems de auto atendimento. é uma das conexões mais frágeis que eu conheço e arrebenta com muita facilidade. Pode reparar: sempre tem um cabo de rede para consertar, não importa onde você esteja. Um bom victorinox sempre ajuda numa situaçã odessas! Obrigado pelo comentário!


    9 years ago on Step 8

     Very nice.  I never leave home without my Swiss Army Knife!


    9 years ago on Introduction

    nice i figured out that you could do this after i bought my crimper  


    9 years ago on Step 8

    Very nice, I tought it would be harder or maybe imposible without a crimping tool!

    ;( i have the Signature knife. no can opener. a Sportsman is in the mail, should have one tho.

    5* good information, may use it later


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Great tutorial I will try it. I have the same knife but it's transparent blue.


    THank you for your comment. I have looked to your website and you have really cool equipments for cabling. Don't you think in have partnership outside USA? Here in Brazil we havent so nice tools like yours. You can find a reseler here easy! Think about and you may increase your slice of the business! Keep contact! Cesar


    10 years ago on Introduction

    thanks for the instructable, I was browsing the web to find out how the RJ connector is assembled. I didn't notice that the plastic bar you have to push down to hold the cable is movable, so I was wondering how this connector was assembled without moving parts and apparently without cluing. I thought the crimp tool would do some sophisticated trick *LOL* ... now I know :D Thanks