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Thread: DIY Guide to Anderson Plugs

  1. #1
    Administrator Gary's Avatar
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    DIY Guide to Anderson Plugs



    For anyone who has set up a power supply to a trailer, Anderson Plugs are the plug of choice for connecting the vehicle trailer power supply wiring with the trailer power supply wiring. These plugs come in a huge range of sizes, and even colours now, with each of the different size plugs having a different amp rating, with each of the different colours only able to plug into a plug of the same colour.



    The plugs can only be pushed together in a certain way, so there is no chance of connecting them up incorrectly (providing the wiring and lugs are installed correctly in the set up stage), and each plug is marked with a "+" and "-" on either lug/terminal as an added reminder.



    The most popular Anderson Plug size is the 50 amp plug with #6 contacts, as this is ample big enough to handle the power to charge an auxiliary battery in a trailer. These plugs are available at most auto retail outlets as well as E-bay, and come in many different brands, and at prices ranging from $3.00 each to $18.00 each. I try and purchase genuine branded Anderson Plugs, and use E-bay retailers for this, purchasing packs of 10 complete plugs for around $30.00. To buy genuine or not is a personal choice, and I'm not convinced there is much difference between the genuine and non genuine products, but it is just my choice.

    50 amp Anderson Plug Dimension




    Anderson Plug Accessories

    Dust covers with rubber or hinged lids.





    Rubber boots for the back of the plugs.



    T-handles to make pulling the plugs apart much easier.



    Setting up your Anderson Plugs
    Trim the insulation of the end of the wires you are using, so that there is just enough bare wire to insert into the lug.



    Now this is the part which may divide a few people, I always like to crimp and solder my lugs, sort of hedging my bets I guess, but I figure it can't hurt.



    To assist to hold everything whilst soldering I hold the lug with a set of multigrips.



    I then hold the soldering iron on the side of the lug and allow the heat to soak through. At the same time I hold the end of the soldering wire in the end of the lug. As the lug and wire heats up, the solder will slowly melt and you will have to feed the wire into the lug. I keep feeding the wire into the lug until it fills to the top with molten solder.



    Allow the lugs to cool.



    The lugs can then be pushed into the plug housing, making sure you get the polarity right with the marks on the plug.





    Inside the outer casing of the plug is a metal plate which locates and retains the lugs once pushed in correctly.







    If installed correctly the contact inside the plug should look like this.




    DISCLAIMER: I have no electrical qualifications, so take this advice as that from a backyard hack.

  2. #2
    Busy planning trips and mods... Red GU's Avatar
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    Have you purchased original Anderson brand plugs Gary? I had people tell me that the copies are no good but bought 20 plugs online for $25 a couple of years ago and although not Anderson brand I have not had an issue. Didn't know you could get rubber boots for them, all I do is usually fill the back up with sealant if I think it needs to be sealed.


    Dave

  3. #3
    Administrator Gary's Avatar
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    I normally look for the genuine Anderson Branded plugs Dave. Don't think there would be much difference though.

    Not sure if the rubber boots are a good idea or not, as you can think of it as, they keep the moisture out, or you can think of them as keeping the moisture in. I personally don't seal up around the back of my plugs, but like to allow the area to breath and dry out. Personal choice.

  4. #4
    Is it beer o'clock yet? outback jack's Avatar
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    thanks for the info gaz

    i need a couple (ebay here i come)

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  5. #5
    Administrator Gary's Avatar
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    Jack these are the ones I normally get and from this bloke as well. Have bought about 3 x 10 packs of these now. Don't know where they all go.

    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/10-x-Genu...ht_1194wt_1270

  6. #6
    Is it beer o'clock yet? outback jack's Avatar
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    thanks for the link mate

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  7. #7
    Work is a waste of camping time. Symon's Avatar
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    There are two main differences I find between the genuine and the non-genuine plugs - on the genuine pins there is a flared entry which makes it easier to insert flexible cable, the non-genuine pins often do not have this. The genuine pins also seem to have better plating that make it easier to solder. Apart from that not much difference between the two.

    Not a bad guide Gary, the only thing I can pick on is that if the cable doesn't match the lug (like in your pics it is too small) then there is little to gain from crimping. You can just fill the void up with solder and get a reasonable joint.
    Toyota Landcruiser HDJ79R - Soft Top Camper with a zillion home grown mods

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  8. #8
    Administrator Gary's Avatar
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    Thanks Symon. I was hoping you would drop by and give your thoughts.

  9. #9
    Leading Hand Touring Rich's Avatar
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    I cant say I have seen the rubber boots either. Can you buy them as a stand alone item?

    Cheers
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  10. #10
    Administrator Gary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Touring Rich View Post
    I cant say I have seen the rubber boots either. Can you buy them as a stand alone item?

    Cheers

    Yes. You can buy all the accessories I've listed individually or there are packages listed on e-bay for mix packages.

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