Dongle Cable Colour

   #1  

processpaul

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I was wondering if Ross-Tech had ever considered the colour of the dongle cables to be something other than black?

It's dark now in the UK after 7pm. My inverter to run my laptop and its cables are all black, my laptop cables are all black, my seats are black and my carpets are black. It's all black...and when hooking it all up, draping it over the steering column to the passenger seat etc, it would be good if it was another colour to see it better within the car, so as to not inadvertently snag/pull on the interface cable when it's plugged in.

I considered getting some coloured heatshrink cable sleeve but then thought how would I disassemble the dongle interface and stopped there..

Thoughts appreciated. :)
 
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PetrolDave

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Or .... use a HEX-NET with a colo(u)red USB cable of your choice?
 
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Uwe

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We use black because people working on cars tend to have very dirty hands and black doesn't show the dirt.

Some of our earliest cables had light-colored parts:



We took a lot of them back in trade against newer cables when newer cables became necessary due to CAN bus, and you should have seen what some of them looked like.

If you'd like to increase the visibility of your cable, my suggestion is to get a roll of brightly colored electrical tape. Yellow is easy to find, but numerous colors are available. Wrap some around the cable in strategic places. If it gets to looking ugly from dirt, it's easy enough to peel off an replace too.

-Uwe-
 
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Mike@Gendan

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...My inverter to run my laptop and its cables are all black, my laptop cables are all black, my seats are black and my carpets are black....
Not the point of your thread I know, but does that mean you are using a mains invertor powered from the car's 12v socket to power your laptop?
If so, it's strongly recommended that you don't.
Plugging into the diagnostic socket while powered from a (poorly designed, but all too common) 12v power invertor can cause a ground-loop condition, which can cause permanent damage to your interface.
 
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jyoung8607

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... you should have seen what some of them looked like.
Where the heck do you source heatshrink tubes that will form-fit a freaking OBD2 connector shrunk and then further reduce to near CAT5!?
 
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Uwe

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Where the heck do you source heatshrink tubes that will form-fit a freaking OBD2 connector shrunk and then further reduce to near CAT5!?
I don't remember where I got that, but it was not cheap! IIRC, it had a 5:1 shrink ratio. It also had hot-melt adhesive coating on the inside. I would shrink the front of it onto the OBD-II connector, and then while the back of it was still fairly open, squirt some hot-melt from a glue gun in the back where the the CAT5 cable comes out before shrinking it down the rest of the way because it didn't really grip the CAT5 by itself very well. I think I also built up the CAT5 some with smaller heat shrink tubing first.

Mind you, this was back in the day when male OBD-II connectors were very difficult to source. The first ISO-COMs I built had no strain relief in that area at all (back of the OBD-II connector was open). People complained about that so this is what I came up with. It wasn't real pretty, but it worked and I don't recall any failures in area after I switched to that method.
 
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NZDubNurd

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We have Wurth heat shrink like that ;-) Use it as work for all sorsts of silly things! The standard Wurth stuff shrinks pretty good too, but not quite like the thick walled glue stuff.
 
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jyoung8607

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I don't remember where I got that, but it was not cheap!
Well I think I'd like to subscribe to your newsletter, etc etc. I've now got both my teenagers involved in OP as a side hustle, building and selling J533 intercept harnesses, so we're in small-scale serial production of these little bundles of joy:





Every harness we make needs five butt splices. I was having some real trouble getting solid and reliable mechanical butt splice crimps on 22AWG or even 20AWG wire, crimps that wouldn't come apart if put under any stress at all. Then I remembered I had some leftover butt-crimp connectors from a trailer rewiring project, which heat shink and have an internal coating of polyamide glue. And they are glorious. In my household they are now specified for all crimp connections everywhere always.

I'd be interested if you happened to remember your source at some point. I chose a flanged female OBD2 with the idea the purchaser could screw it to the underside of the kick panel, but I don't know how many would bother, and I'd love to have more robust protection there, besides unreasonable amounts of fabric tape.
 
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Uwe

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I'd be interested if you happened to remember your source at some point.
That was nearly 20 years ago. Digging through some e-mails from back then, the only clue I've found is that it was likely a Raychem product. A bit of search reveals they make tubing with as much an an 8:1 shrink ratio. I bought most everything from DigiKey back in those days, and I have plenty of order confirmation e-mails from them in the right date range, but sadly, none of them have a detailed list of what I bought.

-Uwe-
 
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