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This is an improved system to connect EL wire. The result is a connection much more resistant to mechanical wear then the traditional connection. You'll need:

- fine electric wire
- wire stripper
- cutter or scissors
- solder iron with fine tip
- shrink tube
- hair dryer
- EL wire connecting ferrule (you can find it here)

EL wire is made like a coaxial cable, so there is one inner copper conductor covered with a phosphor paint and one external conductor made of two fine wires. Everything is then covered by an external plastic colored cover. Proceed by stripping approximately 8 mm - 10 mm (0.3") of the external plastic cover. Do it gently, so the two small wires are not damaged.

wire stripper
 
wires stripper2

At this point you will be able to see the inner conductor covered by the phosphor layer and the outer conductors, the two fine wires.

stripped wire


Using the cutter blade scratch the phosphor paint out of the inner copper conductor for approximately 4 mm (0.16"). Be careful to remove it completely or welding will result difficult.

cutter 
 

Be careful not to cut the two fine wires. The EL wire must look approximately like this one:

el wire 


Now you can proceed by depositating some solder on the inner conductor, maybe using some solder paste.

solder 1 

Get a uninsulated ferrule (you can find it here) and place it on the EL wire, so that the two small wires remain inside the ferrule. Slide it on the EL wire as indicated in the following pictures.


EL wire ferrule


ferrule


Using a pair of pliers crimp the ferrule around the EL wire as shown in the following picture

Pliers crimping


Place shrinking tube (two different diameters) on EL and on inverter wires.

Shrinking tube

Proceed by soldering one of the inverter wires to the ferrule and the other one to the innner EL wire copper wire.

Soldering inner wire 


Slide both pieces of shrinking tube over the connections

shrinking tube

and heat with the hair dryer

hair dryer 2 

Note: it happened to us that after soldering an EL wire, it was not working. We checked the area where we soldered it and everything was perfect. We then found out that the short was on the opposite side of the EL wire, and it probably happened when we cut the EL wire with our scissors. So, if something is not working check the other end, too!

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