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Author Topic: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?  (Read 2191 times)

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Offline heathen

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How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« on: April 26, 2019, 11:52:33 AM »
I've searched and couldn't find any explanation.  How do people make the chopped/stubby XLRs?  I know I could order some from Ted (in fact, I have done so in the past), but I've kinda' enjoyed making my own cables and would like to put the stubby connectors on some. 
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Offline bluegrass_brad

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2019, 01:14:36 PM »
If you go to the facebook group and search for Burleson stubbies and you'll see some step-by-step pics of how I make mine.
"That was back in a time when society was not quite ready for this music. Anyone remember those days? That's when punk rock was dangerous, right?  You couldn't walk into a mall and get your little pussy pierced, and your little Doc Martin boots and your crazy color for your hair.  You walk down the street with blue hair you was gonna get in a fight with about 5 angry construction workers, or the local college football team, rednecks or cops. Sometimes they kicked our ass, but you know what?  Sometimes we beat the fuck out of em"  - Mike Ness, Social Distortion

Offline heathen

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2019, 01:35:15 PM »
If you go to the facebook group and search for Burleson stubbies and you'll see some step-by-step pics of how I make mine.
What Facebook group?
Recordings on LMA: https://archive.org/search.php?query=taper%3A%22Lucas+Lorenz%22
Mics: AT4031 | AT853 (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3 | Sennheiser e614 | Sennheiser MKE2 | DPA 4061 | CA-14 omni Pre: CA9200 Decks: Zoom F8 | Roland R-05

Offline bluegrass_brad

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2019, 02:01:43 PM »
I'll just put them here.

I didnt take a pic of the Step 1, but it is just cutting off the XLR, sanding the cut edge smooth and drilling a hole where you want the cable to exit, some people use a notch instead of a hole. Whatever floats your boat. I used a dremel tool to cut the XLR off.

Step 2:
Heat shrink the cable end for strain relief, then put it through the hole/notch and solder. I used black for one, and red for the other so I can differentiate left and right in the bag. Soldering in there is tight. After soldering everything in place, use a multimeter to check for cross talk between the wires.


Step 3:
Create a dam with tape. You're gonna fill the end with epoxy and the dam allows you to fill it up over the edge so you can shape it after the epoxy cures. I let it dry for 24 hours.


Step 4:
Pull the tape. It will look like this. Time to start shaping it.


Step 5:
I use a flat file to get the rough shape, like this.


Then use sandpaper to get it like this.


Step 6:
Then you can color it if you want. I used a sharpie to color it black.


I've made a few of these over the years. I still use the oldest ones I made like 13 years ago. Very durable if you take the time to make them well.
"That was back in a time when society was not quite ready for this music. Anyone remember those days? That's when punk rock was dangerous, right?  You couldn't walk into a mall and get your little pussy pierced, and your little Doc Martin boots and your crazy color for your hair.  You walk down the street with blue hair you was gonna get in a fight with about 5 angry construction workers, or the local college football team, rednecks or cops. Sometimes they kicked our ass, but you know what?  Sometimes we beat the fuck out of em"  - Mike Ness, Social Distortion

Offline heathen

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2019, 02:38:53 PM »
Thanks!  What sort of epoxy do you use for this?

Also, if I want to have the cable exit straight out would I just need to pour the epoxy around it and keep it still while the epoxy sets?  Or is there anything more to it?
Recordings on LMA: https://archive.org/search.php?query=taper%3A%22Lucas+Lorenz%22
Mics: AT4031 | AT853 (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3 | Sennheiser e614 | Sennheiser MKE2 | DPA 4061 | CA-14 omni Pre: CA9200 Decks: Zoom F8 | Roland R-05

Offline bluegrass_brad

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2019, 02:41:21 PM »
Gorilla General Purpose. Home Depot has it. 5 minute working time.
"That was back in a time when society was not quite ready for this music. Anyone remember those days? That's when punk rock was dangerous, right?  You couldn't walk into a mall and get your little pussy pierced, and your little Doc Martin boots and your crazy color for your hair.  You walk down the street with blue hair you was gonna get in a fight with about 5 angry construction workers, or the local college football team, rednecks or cops. Sometimes they kicked our ass, but you know what?  Sometimes we beat the fuck out of em"  - Mike Ness, Social Distortion

Offline Walstib62

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2019, 06:27:09 PM »
Couple of suggestions:
1. Drill a hole slightly larger than the cable O.D.  Cut the shell of the XLR at the top edge of the hole, then use a file to make a u-shaped slot. This way you can solder the wires to the pins and then insert the pin assy. presoldered. Also, use 2 or 3 pieces of heat shrink, one long, the second a bit shorter, and so on. This gives the cable a bit more protection and strain relief where it leaves the shell.

2. Be careful with the epoxy! There is a ground contact on the edge of the pin assy. that makes contact with the outer shell. This contact should be soldered to pin 1. If you pour the epoxy straight into the shell, it could run down around below the pin assy. and into the lower part of the shell where the pins reside. It can also run down between the ground contact and the shell possibly causing contact problems. I usually use an epoxy putty to first seal and secure the pin assy. in place, let it set, then top off the job with a pourable epoxy.
 Also, the pourable epoxy has a high enough viscosity that you can pour it just to the top of the outer shell, and it will form a slight "dome" such that you don't need to overfill the epoxy and tool it off later. Just make sure it is level prior to pouring the epoxy. I use a Jorgensen clamp to hold the shell in place when I pour the epoxy. I can put several of them in a row if I am making more than 1 at a time.

3. You can buy epoxy tint if you want to get fancy with it. You mix a tiny amount into the clear epoxy and make it any color you want, The color is mixed all the way through.

Offline Moke

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2019, 11:48:46 PM »
I take my angle grinder and cut the connector down further, making the connectors shorter. 
I then take the angle grinder and cut a slot into the top edge, allowing the cable to enter the body. I use a bunch of layers of heat shrink at that interface.
The spring connector clip is touchy!  I put a small bit of foam in over that, and then use a bit of tape to hold it in place, and seal around the foam. The foam allows the spring clip to move freely when bedded in the epoxy (JB-Weld Kwik).
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Offline Twenty8

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2019, 03:11:00 PM »
XLR right angle DIY tutorial
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-XI6doQWIM&list=PL_S4NVGIUk1rDQz3uT6DOzPOXbCdznb9w&index=6&t=0s

TA3 right angle DIY tutorial
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=olDFL1S-I9I&list=PL_S4NVGIUk1rDQz3uT6DOzPOXbCdznb9w&index=4

Star Quad soldering
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xT4ITP1yjgI&list=PL_S4NVGIUk1rDQz3uT6DOzPOXbCdznb9w&index=2

These are all in my to-do list for break-out cables, but I save YouTube vids in playlists for easy access.
Enjoy!

edit: if you use epoxy, you can add color for color coding.  I have a good video about alternatives for epoxy coloring via several trials.  One of the best I have seen is kid's watercolor paints: crush into powder the little discs in those cheapy sets from hobby stores ... viola, epoxy color additive.

« Last Edit: April 27, 2019, 03:14:28 PM by Twenty8 »
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Offline heathen

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #9 on: April 29, 2019, 01:42:23 PM »
Thanks all.  Looks like I've got enough info to give this a try.
Recordings on LMA: https://archive.org/search.php?query=taper%3A%22Lucas+Lorenz%22
Mics: AT4031 | AT853 (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3 | Sennheiser e614 | Sennheiser MKE2 | DPA 4061 | CA-14 omni Pre: CA9200 Decks: Zoom F8 | Roland R-05

Offline Perry

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Re: How to make chopped/stubby XLRs?
« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2019, 10:25:28 AM »
I've built several of these, pretty much following the methods given except I use hot-melt glue as filler instead of epoxy because is sets much quicker. I "plug" the spring cavity with a bamboo skewer and slowly remove it as the glue sets. When dry, I color-code them with Plasti-Dip.
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