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How to secure ends of strip (i think i have OCD)

Discussion in 'RGB Lights - Intelligent Pixels and 3-Channel RGB' started by smartalec, Nov 8, 2014.

  1. smartalec

    smartalec Im a SmartAlec what can i say! Community Project Designer

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    This is how Ive been siliconing an securing the ends of rays strips

    1. firstly i put clear heatshrink on the strip an black heatshrink of the leads
    2. silicon the endcap on
    3. heatshrink the black one over the leads
    4. cover with the clear heatshrink an fill with silicon
    5. heat the clear heatshrink, an wipe of excess silicon
    6. allow to cool.

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    And Thats it.

    Hope it helps the new people
     
  2. davrus

    davrus Silent Elf

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    I don't have any of those endcaps (and I need to add pigtails to a lot of short strips) ..... Is it safe to do all the above WITHOUT the endcap ????? Or when the heatshrink shrinks, will it damage the end of the strip ?


    If I have to use the endcaps, then I guess I better get in touch with Ray urgently !!!!


    It had been my plan to do all the strips this week ...... your posting is VERY timely, Thanks !!!!!
     
  3. OP
    OP
    smartalec

    smartalec Im a SmartAlec what can i say! Community Project Designer

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    you should be fine without the endcaps..
    ive just allways used them (for the old way i used to attach leads, was'nt strong tho)
    its 13mm clear heatshrink, (for strip)
    an 6mm black heatshrink, (for cable)
    that i use as well
     
  4. Bill Ellick

    Bill Ellick Full Time Elf

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    Nice job on your "tutorial" for the ends! :D

    I just posted over on the DIY forum about sealing and replacing bad pixels and thought that maybe it might be good as a follow up to your post as well, so here it is. The pdf is from a year long test I did on sealants.

    Just a word of note for you all out there. Hot glue does NOT hold up for long on this stuff. I ran a test set of strips using several different types of sealants and the only one which held up well is neutral silicone. I tried three different versions of hot glue, 4 types of silicone, and even made up some different variations of tape, electrical liquid tape, and even plastic dip.
    The overall best way to fix strips is to use strips that are covered with silicone tubing to begin with. There were and are still many forms of strips (mostly the dumb strip kind) out there that have an epoxy coating on the strip (which is the kind of strip I used for testing along with putting this type in some silicone tubing). The newer strips are being sold with the clear flexible silicone tubing over the strip and work the best. If you have to repair one of the older types, just peel the epoxy coating off enough to be able to solder in a new pixel/node and then use the clear heat shrink with silicone to seal the ends of it.
    When repairing the strip that is encased in clear tubing, carefully slice and then pull the tubing back so you can replace the dead pixel/node first. Cut out the bad pixel. Place a sleeve of clear heat shrink that will extend past the cut on the tubing at least 1/2" over the tubing on each side of the cut and solder a new pixel in. It is not critical but nice if you can clean the flux off your solder connection as it will corrode after a time but not a lot nor fairly soon. After you pull the tubing back over the new pixel, pull the clear heat shrink over the cut and shrink it down to fit. Then apply a light coat of clear neutral silicone to the end areas of the clear heat shrink (just a bit to cover out say 1/4" or a little more on each side of each end of the heat shrink). It does not take a lot of silicone and you can make a fairly neat and almost invisible seal with just a little practice.
    A good electronic grade neutral silicone is something like this:
    http://www.altex.com/GC-Waldom-Elect...838C10576.aspx
    I have been using it for several years now and it is still as good as the day I put it on. As far as clear heat shrink, there are many places to find it and the pricing can change so search through Google and you can get it fairly cheap.
    This has become the best repair method I have found so far and seems to produce a nice water tight and fairly invisible repair that has lasted so far for a year with no apparent trouble.
    Here is a pdf file for some of the testing that I did on strips. Hope that helps.
     

    Attached Files:

  5. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    I dont go to the extent of using an end like you have, ive always used a small piece of clear heat shrink and then a nice dab of silicone and this has been rock solid. The same process can also be done when replacing a damaged pixel, cut it out and rejoin and use clear heatshrink and silicone to seal.

    But Alec we have always known you have had OCD among other things ;) :D
     

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