USB Cord Surgery

Last weekend when heating up caustic last weekend to clean I burned the USB cord on the HLT temperature and float sensor.  Multi tasking the boil, hop additions, manning the pumps and trying try to get the hoses all sorted out I failed to notice the cord got pretty close to the high output burner.  Didn’t notice the issue at first but the temperature shown on the screen was decently far off so I ran the troubleshooting menu and noticed the mis formed cord sheathing.  It felt a bit crispy.  I cut off the burned section and decided to put a female connector up higher and use a USB extension incase it happens again I can just use any USB cord vs having to do this again.  Once I opened the cord it occurred to me that this will be somewhat of a chore to solder and repair.  I got the tools and order the cables and gave it a shot.

Once the outer sheath is pealed back there is a mesh weave that has to be cut, this provides pull strength on these types of cables.  Once that is gone peal back the foil and you will be presented with a red, black and three shielded pairs (some string and other strength wires as well).  Pull off the plastic and foil on the pairs and separate them all out , you should have 8 separate wire at this point.  Get them all organized and straight, strip a short section off each and start splicing them together.  Once the pairs are spliced together hit the wire with the fine tipped solder gun, apply the solder to the wire and wait for it to flow on to the wire, making a one piece connection.  Once a good splice it made I went with liquid electrical tape to each connection to minimize a short.  When its all sealed and your happy with you work apply some heat shrink wrap over the splice and give it enough heat to make the joint nice and smooth.

A splice in wires this small will never be as good as one solid piece but it works and was a good way to save a chunk of change over buying an entire HLT sensor.  They only sell this entire assembly so stainless and all.

I would like to see MoreBeer make a connection near the top to one could just buy new cables as I am sure this will happen again.  There is no way to keep the cord entirely protected when they are cut to specific length and the HLT burner kicks out some serious BTU’s.

All done and tested, success.  It lives to brew another day.

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