Crimping terminals is a very common wire assembly process going back several decades. Over time processing methods and procedures were established and improved to assure optimum crimp quality and electrical conductivity of your wire to terminal connection. This article will cover the typical crimp types, crimp methods used to provide a quality wire to terminal connection and migration path from manual processing to automation of the crimp process.
Closed Barrel: Closed barrel terminals possess a round crimp barrel that surrounds the wire being crimped. There are two typical open barrel configurations, formed by progressive stamping process with a seam where the two sides come together and form a circle and solid machines connector where the crimp barrel is seamless, normally produced on pneumatic crimping tool. Closed barrel terminals come insulated or non-insulated and they are in loose form or on the reel. Samples of closed barrel terminals include rings, quick connects, ferrules and solid pins used in aerospace applications.
Open Barrel: Open barrel terminals are often U shaped just before crimping and so are crimped across the terminal in the B shape or overlapped. Open barrel terminals are usually available mounted on a reel but occasionally can be found in loose form for lower volume processing. As well as a barrel for that wire, some open barrel terminals feature an insulation support for applications for added strain relief (from vibration or wire movement). Open barrel terminals normally are un-insulated but in some cases have got a partially loaded insulator pod which is inserted over the terminal during the crimp process.
Wezag Crimp Tool 1Hand Tools: A hand tool is commonly used in low volume or prototype crimp applications. Tooling inside a hand tool could be fixed and non-removable from your hand tool frame or may be removable. Crimp dies are accessible for open barrel and closed barrel terminals A trusted approach to crimping wire to terminals with good repeatability. As volumes increase, repeated processing of terminals with hand tools could cause strain on an operator.
Bench Top Crimping: Crimping terminals with bench top crimping equipment provides moderate volume processing of loose piece and reel mounted terminals.
Wezag CS 200With loose piece terminals, the terminal and wire are hand loaded to a crimp nest as well as the operator cycles the press using a foot pedal or palm button.
applicators2Reel mounted terminals are processed using a crimp press and applicator. The applicator carries a mechanical or pneumatic feed which positions the terminal on the crimp anvil. The operator presses a foot pedal and also the crimp press cycles, forming the terminal within the wire and advancing another terminal for more processing. A variety of applications might be processed with bench top crimping equipment by the utilization of different press tonnages and applicators/die sets (fixed and quick change).
Automated Crimp Processing: Automated processing adds a wire cut and strip element for the crimp process. The standard form is the stripper-crimper which adds a wire stripping unit to your bench crimp press to strip the end of the wire and presenting the wire for the crimp nest for crimping.
Automated crimp centers process the wire from its source within a barrel or reel, cut and strip the wire to length and provide it to some crimp press for crimping. Reel fed applicators are the same because the bench top type. In the case of loose piece terminals, a vibratory bowl is commonly used to orient the terminals and present towards the crimp press for wire cutters.
As volumes increase, the desire to automated also increases. Occasionally, the rise is dramatic, requiring an increased step with the automation migration path. But normally the rise is controlled and slower so migration may take a multi step approach over time.
Hand Tool to Bench Top Migration: Migrating from the hand tool to power assisted bench top crimping requires a bench top crimping platform just like the Accu-Crimp 62 or electric powered CS200 from Wezag Tools (both pictured above).
Heavy Duty Applications use higher tonnage to provide the energy needed toprocess large terminals. The Wezag UP60 is pneumatic powered and gives over 7 a great deal of crimp force.
Non-Fixed hand tool die sets can be removed and appropriate for bench top crimping units. This reduces the overall cost of your migration from hand tools to powered bench top equipment.
Bench Top to Automated Process Migration: Migrating from a bench top to automated processing machine like the Primo XLT or Uno multi-station machines is easy and straightforward. Mini style applicators found in a bench press application as pictured above might be mounted right from a bench top press for the press in the automation system. Some applications call for a different feed cam to give the terminal in the press downstroke to permit for your robotic arm to dexopky08 into position without interference in the terminal.
However, in the case of loose piece terminals, separate presses with integrated vibratory bowl fed systems is usually necessary since they are not really a standard put in place with an automated machine.
Loose Piece to Reel Mounted terminal Migration: Converting from loose piece processing to reel fed terminals needs a crimp press and applicator as described above. The first task is determining the compatible terminal on reel equivalent. If a quick change mini applicator may be used, then a wire strippers can be quickly changed from a terminal type to another simply by switching out the terminal applicator.