Provide Power With an Old USB Cord




Introduction: Provide Power With an Old USB Cord

About: I go by millerman4487, and I am here to share what I make. Hopefully, you can learn from watching what I have done and even improve upon it. So here you go! If you have any ideas for future projects, send...

Difficulty:easy..Wire cutting and splicing

If you have any old USB cords lying around, why not do something useful with them? I needed a way to provide power to my Arduino board without using the provided USB cable because it was too long, so I created this Instructable to show you how I solved my problem.

Step 1: Supplies and Tools

Things you will need:

  • Wire cutters (or scissors)
  • USB cord you are willing to sacrifice
  • Jumper cables for a breadboard (or just normal wire if you do not need to use with a breadboard)
  • *Not pictured* Electrical tape

Step 2: Prepare the Cord

  1. Cut the USB cord about 6" from the base
  2. Strip the outer casing, taking care not to harm the wires inside (if you do that's okay, just cut off your mistake and try again closer to the base)
  3. Carefully sort the inside wires and you should see 4 colored wires, some string, and insulating wire.
  4. Keep the red and black wires and cut everything else away

Step 3: Splice Wires Together

  1. Strip the outer coating of the red and black wires from the USB cable and the two wires you will be attaching.
  2. Twist the red wires together along with both blacks.
  3. Fold down one of the wires along the USB cable and tape it down.
  4. Repeat step 3 with the other wire.
  5. Reinforce the entire thing with tape to ensure it does not come apart.

Step 4: Plug and Test

Plug your creation into a wall adapter, computer port, power bank or whatever else you own that has a USB port and test it out! I plugged mine into a power bank and the Vin and GND pins of my Arduino. A quick look at the indicator light showed that it powered on and my creation worked!

Please feel free to comment!



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    7 Discussions

    and messed up four as for

    I mean usb not sub my tab has an auto correct thing...

    what is the sub from because I have an old Samsung charger (it works) I don't need it and I'm not sure if the Samsung charger (of witch can power up most now days phones and potable batteries) has for cords as thus shown on the picture

    I would suggest a solder connection for a patch leads to the USB cable the slightly different patch lead lengths is a great idea, also some heat shrink tubing would be a good idea or some Meld Tape that forms into a nice bond, you can also use electrical glue for the wires that acts as a cold solder method.
    If you are testing this cable don't connect directly to a USB port on a Laptop or PC, Connect via a USB powered hub. If you damage the USB Port on your new PC or Laptop you would have a bad day, Damage a much cheaper USB Hub, still a bad day but much cheaper to fix.

    Cut your sacrifice USB cable in half that way both ends are usable for diffrent projects.

    1 reply

    You have a good point about damaging the power supply, so what if you connect this to a voltage regulator such as this one:

    I believe this would prevent the project from drawing too much power, and if you also used a diode you could keep it from doing any harm to your computer.

    just a tip. make one of the leads, either the red one or the black one just 2 cm shorter than the other so that the chance of an accidental short is mitigated

    1 reply