One question that many mechanically inclined people ask when it comes time to buy guitar cables is whether it makes sense to build their own. Naturally, the answer is that it depends. From a materials standpoint, you can certainly find the required materials at a substantially cheaper price than you could if you were to buy a brand new cable. These materials are also easy to find at some of the major manufacturers. Amphenol is a great supplier for connectors and Mogami is a great supplier for unterminated cable. There are tons of other companies out there supplying the appropriate parts as well, so don’t feel like you must use the aforementioned two. A full materials list can be found below.
-Heat Shrink Tubing
You will use the solder to join your guitar cable wire to the guitar cable connectors. The soldering flux will help you make clean soldered joints. The heat shrink will all you to protect and cover the soldered joint after you have completed it. The Tech Flex will protect your cable and let you add a personal touch if you want to add some color. The wire and the connectors are of course the components that make up your cable.
Another major consideration you must make is whether or not you have the mechanical aptitude to perform such a task. The most important skill that you must possess to build the best guitar cable possible is the ability to solder. Soldering isn’t exactly rocket science, but it is somewhat of an art form. It is strongly recommended that you should practice and have some experience before attempting to solder cables or you will be disappointed with the result. Here is an excellent tutorial on soldering. All other skills are relatively simply compared to soldering, and can be accomplished with a little bit of time and patience.
Next comes whether or not you have the tools on hand. If you already have the tools on hand, great! It’s a sunk cost. If not, you will have to buy them and they will add to the cost of making guitar cables. I will take this time to emphasize that you should not scrimp on the safety glasses when soldering your cables. You only get two eyes and one wrong move one time can cost you the use of your eye if it is unprotected. Safety glasses are cheap, so get them and use them. Below you can find a list of tools that you need to build your own guitar cable.
The safety glasses protect your eyes from molten solder and will certainly be worth every penny in the event of an inadvertent slip up. The soldering iron will allow you to apply solder to your joints. You can find one of our favorite soldering irons by clicking here. The wire strippers and the knife will be used to remove and clean up the shielding. The vise will be used to hold your connectors in place while you solder. Lastly, the heat gun is used to shrink the heat shrink tubing. You can find one of our favorite and affordable heat guns by clicking here.
So by now you are probably wondering how to actually make a guitar cable. Because there are so many techniques and technical terms used during the process, it is far easier to show this in video format. Below is one tutorial that is particularly easy to follow and shows all of the steps quite clearly. After the video you will most definitely have a clear picture of whether making your own guitar cable is for you.
How To Make A Guitar Cable:
So there you go. You now have a complete materials list, tool list, and instructional video that provides you all of the information required to make your own diy guitar cable. Happy building!