Solder Headers to Wire...Without the Hassle!

About: I love building things and taking pictures.

Impress your wife by saying your going into jewelry. (Not really.)

It's more like a compromise.

If you're like me (and I think you are) you find that soldering wires to male headers is very annoying. First of all, if you leave the tip on the header for too long, it will melt the plastic holding it bringing it out of alignment.So, John Fattaruso developed this interesting way of soldering to leads. I personally find it extremely useful and very helpful.

Why would you need to solder to headers? Well, if you didn't solder to headers, then if you plugged a wire into the Arduino, Propeller, or even Basic Stamp, it would easily fall out. 

Step 1: Find Your Materials.

You will need:
Crimp Beads AKA Crimp Tubes (You can buy them here) (They come in four sizes. Sizes One and Two work best for our project.)
Male headers
A board to test your finished project (Breadboard, Arduino, Propeller, etc.)


Step 2: Build It! Part 1

Start by placing the bead on the header.

Then, insert a wire between the bead and the pin.

Step 3: Build It! Part 2 - Squeezing and Soldering

Next, you take a good pair of pliers and then squeeze until the wire is fairly secure.

Finally solder.

Step 4: Done!

Now, you know how to solder to headers with some jewelry.

Your wife should be proud. (I think.)

As always...if you experience any problems leave a comment and I will try my best to help you.

If you did make it successfully well then...leave a comment saying you made it successfully!



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    18 Discussions


    4 years ago on Introduction

    I disapprove. That jewelry you used in the pictures is really ugly.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    When the pin is of square section, as in this case, it is very easy to wrap the wire around it. Then you can solder it, if you want.

    7 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    The trick is to pull the metal pins out of the plastic carrier, solder them, then push them back into the plastic. Takes a macho man with some muscle to do it though :)

    But seriously if you grab those pins with some needle nosed pliers you can pull them right out. I tin wire and pin, then just lay the wire right up onto the pin and solder it.

    The REAL trick is soldering a wide ribbon cable to header pins. Then it helps to be good soldering. Because you can't pull the pins out and have things come out evenly.

    The one in the picture is a narrow one, I've done up to 25 wide. When you get that wide you have to cut the cable concave because the outer wires need to be longer to make it to the pins.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    use a 6$ wirewrap tool, ribbon fits fine in them and once you get all the wires wrapped touch with solder, no skill required


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Pre tinning the wire and the header is a big help. You can then press them together, apply brief heat, and you get a pretty good joint without anyting else. ( wire and header should be parallel to maximize contact ) Coating the whole thing with hot glue or something similar will make the connection mechanically stronger and stop it from bending ( and breaking ) right at the joint.

    3 replies

    Applies to solid or stranded -- solid is a bit easier to deal with but is more likely to break from stress.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    well, I'm glad I don't work at NASA then. Plus, I'm not qualified to work at NASA because of child labor laws.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    You don't now but you might. I don't think I ever have either but I've had to adhere to the same standards. They're pretty universal.