Not Chinese Fakes But Not big $$$ Either

Tired and bored after reading 11 pages of posts about Chinese Counterfeit Cables (guilty of a couple entries myself), and looking for a DYI project, I decided to split the difference between Cheap Fakes and outrageous prices for name brand American made cables.  After doing lots of research and reading I selected bulk "CHELA"  speaker cable from VHAudio  and connectors, shrink tube etc, from AV Outlet

This has been a fun project and a first for me.  The total cost was +/- $400 per 8 foot cable.  Given the quality of materials, such as 48 strand OCC copper wires, which translates to 10 AWG, I think the cost is very reasonable.  I try to build as much as I can but mostly it has been woodworking in the past.  I encourge everyone to try their hand at projects.  It's always more rewarding than shoveling cash at retailers. If you're interested, here's the project in detail.





Yes, they are the sweet spot for solid core and even stranded (if the insulation is somewhat easy to strip and once properly graduated).

They did the job when I used them to strip Canare 4S11 (just lost a few stands with 16 strips) but it was a painful experience.

I also successfully used them with various Kimber bulk cable years ago.

Hoping that the one's Chris rec'd will be kindler/gentler when I revisit the Canare to add connectors (want fresh/clean ends for that).

I didn't gather from the pics that Big's cable has 48 insulated wires (found out when I reviewed his link) and can only imagine the sense of accomplishment involved with stripping 192 wires for a stereo pair.

I also saved his "link" to the bare 92% copper connectors/spades as they also interest me, but I do not own a crimping tool (don't know what's good/OK/waste of time).

I have a couple of copper bearing solders from Chimera Labs and another source which might be interesting to try.



@dekay Any standard wire stripping tool has the crimping feature built in.  On the link to the spades, click on the install instructions and you'll see a pair.  You use the grove for 10 - 12 AWG.  It does not take much pressure to put a solid crimp in these spades.  At $5 a pair, order an extra set for trial.  

Thanks for the info.

Don't see it on the Klein I just ordered, but seem to recall it on a pair long handled strippers that I had years ago.

I already have "copper" spades from Amazon but they didn't pass the magnet test (too much pull) so your pick looks better for the Canare experiment.





@carlsbad Re the copper purity, the Banana Plugs are 93% copper but the SP series spades "utilize C11000 100% IACS Copper which are the highest conductivity coppers available for their respective designs".  Note sure how much of a difference it makes but I did like the idea of 100% copper.  

@bigtwin  If you like lugs, then solid copper is definitely the way to go.  Many traditional bananas have problems.  I've had them come apart on me.  

So I use silver plated BFA style "banana" plugs.  Those have the added advantage of low mass which is the main thing I have against lugs.   This is a bit of a sidetrack on this thread but I don't like a huge mass in the signal path like most binding posts are.  I make my own binding posts out of the same high conductivity copper you mention but it is 3/16" tubing pressed into a nylon housing.