Disclaimer: I am not responsible for any damage done to your home, your equipment, your person, or anything else which you may destroy while following this guide. In reading this, you agree to assume all of the responsibilities for your actions. In addition, this thread is intended to be an objective guide for you to fix your broken harnesses. You agree NOT to use this guide to make any sort of profit. Also, due to the nature and delicacy of this repair, it won't have a 100% success rate. However, taking your time and doing a good job will improve the results for you.
A very special thanks to PMR13954 and jacx9200 for donating their broken harnesses to me so that I could make this thread.
Alright then. As amazing as they may be, an ever present problem with Dye and Proto markers is the fragile nature of their wiring harnesses, the solenoid and microswitch harness in particular. The wires easily pull out of the connectors, potentially ruining a day of play and shaking out your wallet for a new one. However, this problem CAN be fixed, and today I will show you how to do it. Follow closely and you may save yourself some money and heartache.
One thing that I must say is that this repair takes an enormous amount of precision and finesse. I don't care how good your grade in shop class was, forget it. You're going to need some sort of outside experience or this repair will be HARD for you. Another thing worth mentioning is the tools to be used. I used a variety of specialized tools because I build guitar amplifiers on the side and they were readily available to me. I realize that most of you are not going to have Xcelite handpieces but you can improvise. Any precision instruments should work fine.
For this repair, I used the following:
- Wire Cutters
- Precision Pliers
- Small gauge wire strippers
- Small screwdrivers
- JB Weld
- A leather glove
Now you are ready to begin. GO SLOWLY! You must minimize damage to the parts of the harness. A botched job will produce botched results. Use great caution and care.
Step one: Remove the Wire Clasp
In the beginning of the repair, you must remove all of the old bits of wire from the connector. The only way to do this is to remove the small metal connection, which I will refer to as the Wire Clasp
from the connector. This grips the wire and anchors it into the connector with a small tab on the side. I will call this the Restraint Tab
To remove the wire clasp, you must depress the restraint tab. I did this with my small flathead screwdriver. After the tab is depressed, you can take a small tool and push the wire clasp from the bottom so that it comes out of the top of the connector.
***Note: Because of the condition of the wires, I opted to replace the entire battery clip with a new one, removing both of the wires from the connector.***
Here are the clasps removed from the connector:
These are VERY SMALL parts. Don't lose them!
Step Two: Removing wire bits
Notice that there are still small bits of wire and insulation gripped in the clasp. They are held in place with two little arms which bear hug them. You may bend these arms back a little with tweezers, small pliers, or a small knife to remove the wire remnants. If you use a knife, please wear a leather glove to prevent cutting yourself. This is delicate work and it is easy for your hand to slip here.
Wire bits removed:
Step Three: Attaching the wires
You must now prep the wire or wires to be inserted into the connector. To do this, cut off the ragged ends and strip the insulation off for the new connection. ***YOU DO NOT NEED A LOT OF BARE WIRE, 4 OR 5 MILLIMETERS WILL BE ALL THAT YOU NEED. THIS IS IMPORTANT TO THE LONGEVITY OF THE REPAIR.***
Once you have the wire ends prepared, attach them to the clasp with those tiny bear hug arms we talked about before. Use small pliers to bend them back into place. Don't try to solder them on, if you do, you will have no room to fit them back into the connector. The connection may seem fragile, we'll deal with that later.
Now, simply insert the wire clasps and wires back into the connector. The red wire goes in the outermost terminal, the black wire takes the one next to it. After that comes the blue wire, and the yellow wire takes the other outside terminal.
In its current state, the connection will be unstable and easily pulled out again. Secure it with something; I recommend JB Weld. (Whatever you use, make sure that it is NON CONDUCTIVE, lest you short out the circuit by crossing over the terminals. Also, don't use Gorilla Glue as it expands outward during the dry time and will move into the terminals, preventing you from attaching the connector to the board.) The other wires will act as an anchor to the JB Weld, holding the new connection in place. Don't use too much JB Weld or the harness may sit funny in the frame with the grips closed. Also be careful of getting JB weld in the terminals themselves! JB WELD IS ENTIRELY NON-CONDUCTIVE!
Once the JB Weld has cured, You are finished! If done right, you have just saved yourself some money and grief. I hope you enjoyed my instructions, and if there is anything you think is worth mentioning, tell me so that I can add it. Thanks!