HOW TO SOLDER YOUR DEANS® ULTRA PLUGS®

Here's a basic guide on how to solder Deans® Ultra Plugs®

Tools and Materials Needed

  • Deans® Ultra Plug®: Ensure you have genuine Deans® brand plugs.
  • Soldering Iron: for 12 gauge or smaller wire a 1/8 inch chisel tip, 10 gauge wire may use a slightly larger chisel tip. Soldering station with adjustable temperature should be set at 710° to 740°.  
  • Solder: Lead based solder should be SN62 or SN63 in 0.050 diameter.
  • Heat Shrink Tubing: Provided with your Deans® Ultra Plug®.
  • Wire Strippers and Cutters: For preparing the wire.

Preparing the Wire and Pin

  • Strip the Wire: Use the wire strippers to expose 3/16” or 5mm of bare wire.
  • Tin the Wire and Connector Pin: This step is critical as you will not be adding solder when making the final connection. Apply enough solder to the exposed wire to completely cover the stranding.
  • Tin the Connector Pin: with the connector gently held with a vise or soldering jig, return each pin when they are in the horizontal position. Add solder only to the side of the pin where the wire will be attached. On a genuine Deans® Ultra Plug® this is where the positive and negative symbols are located. Add enough solder to make a small mound on the pin. Important - Do not add so much solder that it falls down to the bottom side of the pin. Allow the wire and pin to cool back to room temperature before proceeding.

 Attaching the Connector

  • Lightly clamp the connector with a vise or jig: clamp it with the first pin you intend to attach wire to in the horizontal position.
  • Attach the Wire: Slide one piece of shrink tubing onto the wire. Wipe your iron clean, then pre-wet the tip with your solder. Holding the insulated section of the wire with your fingers, position the tinned wire over the pin. With the iron touching the top of the wire, heat the wire until the solder melts. Once the solder on the wires melts, you may need to roll iron down so it's also touching the pin. Once the solder on both the wire and pin have liquefied, you will feel the wire sink into position against the pin. Hold the wire, steady and immediately remove the soldering iron. This step should take two seconds or less. If you hold the iron there much longer than that or you begin to feel the wire get so hot that you want to let go, you've taken too long.
  • Insulate the Connection: Slide heat shrink tubing over the connection and heat it to shrink it securely around the wire and connector. This step is crucial to prevent short circuits.
  • Important: if you are soldering the plug onto a pre-wired battery pack, insulate the first connection with heat shrink prior to attaching the second wire. Even after insulating it use extreme caution if you are soldering a live pack.

FAQ

  • What type of soldering iron tip should I use? You will want to use a 1/8 inch wide chisel tip. This provides good heat transfer for soldering connectors and wires. Avoid a screwdriver or pencil tip which are too narrow.  Too small of a tip will cause the user to let the tip sit longer on the solder and then the heat travels up into the wire and as well as into the plug.
  • What kind of solder should I use? Use a quality solder like SN62 or SN63 rather than 60/40 solder. These solders solidify quickly, reducing the risk of a poor "cold" solder joint.
  • How should I prepare the wire and connector before soldering? Tin both the wire and the connector pin prior to soldering. For the wire, heat it with solder until the stranding is completely covered. For the pin, flow solder to create a small bump. Let both cool completely before connecting.
  • Why should I let the tinned parts cool before soldering? Allowing them to fully cool prevents excess heat damage during the final joint.  The solder should be shiny.  If it the wire/connector was moved while the solder was cooling, the solder will be dull.  This will also increase electrical resistance.
  • Should I wipe the iron tip? Yes, wipe the tip clean and then re-tin it by flowing a bit of solder prior to each connection. This improves heat transfer.
  • How do I actually solder the wire and connector? First heat the wire, then both the wire and pin simultaneously with the iron. Apply slight downward pressure until the wire sinks into the pin's solder bump. Remove the iron immediately at this point to prevent overheating damage.
  • How long should I hold the heat on each joint? Just 1-2 seconds. If it takes longer than this, then more flux or improved tinning is needed.
  • Does proper preparation matter? Properly tinning both parts prior to connecting is crucial for creating a good solder joint quickly.

 

DEANS® connectors designed specifically for high-current applications in R/C models. With proper installation and care, they provide a superior electrical connection. If you're not confident in your soldering skills, it might be worth seeking assistance from someone experienced or watching some instructional videos for guidance.