Wires Pull Themselves Out

We have our camera working, but we have the problem of the PWM cables (specifically the TTL one) pulling themselves out. Any suggestions on wiring that might prevent this? Thanks!

find a place to tie-wrap the wire to something right next to the camera. The connectors are not designed to hold the weight of the cable.

those little tiewrap foam tape stick on square anchor things work great

Hot glue gun is what we use. We hot glue EVERYTHING. PWM cables on robot controller, Victors, relays, digital I/O, analog, CMUCAMERA…everything…

And you can remove it pretty easy afterwards if you need to.

I have a hot melt glue gun and I’m not afraid to use it. But. Would you like to share exactly how you apply it?

Im not sure exactly ho but I would guess, you would plug the PWM in. Then apply it in the crack of the victor and the pwm. Around the outside edge.

On the side of the mount there are holes, I removed the plastic casing from around the wires, pushed it through, and stuck them back in the plastic casing. Then I placed it on the board. This means they get less movement at where they are attached at the board, thus meaning they don’t fall out. Then to the computer, I have it attached along the way with a tie-wrap from where the camera is positioned, so it should not fall out, if it does we have a serious problem.

Since mine is tilt only these days, I don’t really have to worry about the pan causing tension, as the tilt amount is not enough to get it the cable to accidently fall out.

Hot gluing anything is not what I would suggest, but if it works for you, good luck with it.

Hot glue is actually an industry standard solution (as explained to me by an electrical engineer; it has excellent insulating properties).
If you take apart a radio, TV, etc. sometimes you will find hot glue holding vibration-sensitive parts onto the board. :slight_smile:

I dont know if its PC or even GP to come out and say this on a public forum,

but… a robot that likes to pull out its own wires? We frown on that around here!

Your robot needs professional help! :^)

When I over the course of one summer worked at Philips the Dutch company, we were told not to use hot glue, as it can accidently melt wires, instead we were using some extremely strong tape.

It is possible, if the gun nozzle were to touch the wire directly but the glue itself shouldn’t be hot enough to sheathing. At most you can only get a light burn from hot glue and it cools almost instantly. The only thing that is a negative here is that if you need to move electronics or replacing wires, and you often do, you might find that your wires are glued to your robot (who would have thought) While your at it secure down all the PWMs any one of them get pulled, and PWMs have a bad habit of this, and you might lose function of a vital piece of your robot. Zip ties work great and if you don’t have a place to mount them the sticky pads are perfect.

The only problem is that tape is illegal in FIRST unless it is used as an insulator.

Hmmm. There are low temp melt hot glues; I wonder if that’s what they were referring to? MechanicalBrain is right in that is is rather hard, without touching the tip, to get a bad burn from hot glue. We havn’t done it in a few years, but it seemed to work very well when we did.

Yeah, say that hot glue doesn’t burn to the scar on my left hand that I’ve had since fifth grade.

One of our mentors gets this orange anti-tamper stuff from his job… We’ve used that for most of our robots, and never had a problem with it.

These connectors were enough of a disaster that I did not trust them.
We cut the plastic casing off and carefully soldered the wires onto
the formerly encased connectors, then insulated them. On the power
wiring we actually pulled the connector pins, but had so much trouble
getting the solder out of the plated through holes we did not try that
again. Once the solder was out of the plated through holes, however,
you get a really good soldering job for the cabling directly to the board.


I believe we are using silicon to secure them into place, it would work much the same as hot glue, and it would insulate aswell. :slight_smile:

I need to step in here an say a few things about hot glue…
The glue is at or near the same temperature as the gun it comes from. In some cases that is enough of a thermal shock to damage critical electronic components so, no, it is not an industry “standard”. Depending on where it is used, it can have other than insulator properties. I would not want to depend on it providing high voltage protection or insulating a temperature critical capacitor. And the one thing no one has pointed out is what happens when you want to remove or modify what is attached with hot glue? It requires getting everything up to the melting point to pull it apart or trying to cut it apart with a knife. Often it goes where you don’t want it.
What industry does use (and it looks a lot like hot glue) is paraffin. It is easy to melt, pour, scrape away, reposition etc. Again, there are places you wouldn’t use it. (i.e. near a heatsink or other hot component, high voltage or certain RF circuits.)
We found that using square header pins (just like the ones on the RC) which fit snugly and deeply in the connectors work much better than the stamped male pins of a PWM cable. Wires soldered to the end make for a low profile and allows the wires to dress out to the side where they can easily be secured by the enclosure or ty wraps. A **little **dot of hot glue on each solder point (this is an appropriate use), heatshrink, or electrical tape to insulate the soldered connection (before insertion) works very well, and doesn’t damage any of the wire or connectors.