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  #21  
Old 10-24-2018, 09:46 AM
rocketman1988 rocketman1988 is online now
 
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Location: Sunman, IN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TShort View Post
I bought one of these after much research:

https://labelworks.epson.com/product/lw-px900/

Pricey, but very worth it. Every wire in the upgraded system is labeled with heat shrink tube. It is very easy to do, easy to read and makes things more serviceable down the road.

Plus you can use the labeler for all kinds of other things around the house and hangar!
+1 for this label maker.

Also, check out Hawk Labeling. They are AWESOME to work with!
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Aerospace Engineer '88

RV-10
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  #22  
Old 10-24-2018, 10:03 AM
DRMA DRMA is offline
 
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Location: Sugar Land, TX
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I first tried printing wire numbers on paper labels with my laser printer, cutting them into small strips, sticking them on the wire and covering them with clear heat shrink tube. This worked but took a lot of time and didn't allow for easy changes when I didn't have the right pre-printed label. So I tried just hand writing on the paper label, cutting and applying with clear heat shrink over the top. This worked, but also took extra time and didn't look as good. Both methods were too fiddly for my liking - just a personal thing.

I ended up purchasing a Dymo Rhino 4200 label maker with black on yellow heat shrink label cartridges in 1/4" and 3/8" sizes. The 1/4" works for most single wires, and the 3/8" fits the 2 and 3 conductor shielded cables. I selected the black on yellow color as the yellow labels are easily spotted on the white wires in a large bundle.

These tubes start out flat, so when you open the tube and put it on the wire, it will hold in place until you shrink it. This allows me to leave the labels on the wires after pulling them, and then to put them into final position and shrink them after trimming the wire to final length for termination.

While this is a more expensive solution than the paper labels with clear heat shrink over the top, it takes me less time, is more flexible, and results in a professional installation. So after all the money I've spent on the RV-10 and high priced avionics, the additional few dollars for this solution is well worth the money to me.

As for just color coding the wires, while I am using some color coded single wires, good luck finding multi-conductor cables in anything other than white. And these are mostly what you use for the avionics wiring.

While it is very important to have a well documented set of wiring diagrams, they don't provide as much help if you can't easily identify the wires when you are trouble shooting or have problems. As a professional electrical engineer with 40 years of experience in industrial instrumentation and control, I would never consider nor accept an installation where the wiring did not include a logical system of wire numbering with the wires clearly identified with their respective number at each termination.

Just my 2 cents worth. As the builder of an experimental aircraft, we are all entitled to our own opinions and to build as we see fit. That's one of the privileges of our experimental hobby.

Regards,
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Last edited by DRMA : 10-25-2018 at 10:45 AM. Reason: corrected a couple of typos
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  #23  
Old 10-24-2018, 10:28 AM
Raymo's Avatar
Raymo Raymo is offline
 
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The Brady BMP21 is a great unit for wire labeling. There are options for heat-shrink labels, as well, but I just use the 3/4" black on white and wrap the label around the wire.
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  #24  
Old 10-24-2018, 10:34 AM
rocketman1988 rocketman1988 is online now
 
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Default interesting

I had the opportunity to crawl around in a B-767-300-ER that was in for heavy maintenance recently.

The comment here's reminded me of some of the things I saw "behind the curtain". As most of the baggage compartment walls were removed, the wiring was plainly visible...literally thousands of plain white wires, hundreds of bundles, and running everywhere.

Even WITH the detailed schematics that I know they have, I would hate to have to troubleshoot a wiring problem in that jungle!
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Bob
Aerospace Engineer '88

RV-10
Structure - 90% Done
Cabin Top - Aaarrghhh...
Doors - Done
On Gear
290 HP Barrett Hung
ShowPlanes Cowl with Skybolts Fitted - Beautiful
Wiring...

Dues Paid 2018,...Thanks DR+
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  #25  
Old 10-24-2018, 10:54 AM
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gyoung gyoung is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketman1988 View Post
I had the opportunity to crawl around in a B-767-300-ER that was in for heavy maintenance recently.

The comment here's reminded me of some of the things I saw "behind the curtain". As most of the baggage compartment walls were removed, the wiring was plainly visible...literally thousands of plain white wires, hundreds of bundles, and running everywhere.

Even WITH the detailed schematics that I know they have, I would hate to have to troubleshoot a wiring problem in that jungle!
The big boys mark their wires the whole length. If you looked close you would probably find wire numbers stamped/etched every foot or so. Back in the 70's the avionics shop at TI had a wire stamping machine used to mark wires going into modification kits. I got a FWF engine package for my Navion that came off an Beech A36 and all the sensor wires were marked full length per their wiring diagram. And I just saw that ACS will sell you wire marked to your spec - really pricey but available.
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  #26  
Old 10-24-2018, 11:21 AM
rocketman1988 rocketman1988 is online now
 
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Default yeah

They probably were marked but it would still be a nightmare trying to find which wire you were looking for...
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Bob
Aerospace Engineer '88

RV-10
Structure - 90% Done
Cabin Top - Aaarrghhh...
Doors - Done
On Gear
290 HP Barrett Hung
ShowPlanes Cowl with Skybolts Fitted - Beautiful
Wiring...

Dues Paid 2018,...Thanks DR+
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  #27  
Old 10-24-2018, 11:49 AM
Squid Squid is offline
 
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Location: Woodstock, VA
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+1 for Dave Macdonald's reply. The Dymo labelmaker along with Industrial heat-shrink labels work for me. Believe I first saw this recommendation in a HomebuilderHelp youtube video.

- John Munroe
RV-7: Bought & Flying
RV-8: Under Construction (SB wings currently)
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  #28  
Old 10-24-2018, 11:49 AM
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RV7A Flyer RV7A Flyer is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketman1988 View Post
They probably were marked but it would still be a nightmare trying to find which wire you were looking for...
This is one of the reasons for making neat wire bundles, without the sphaghetti criss-crossing of wires that I see in many airplanes...so that once you *find* a wire (or identify it at one of the ends), you can easily trace it through the bundle.
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  #29  
Old 10-24-2018, 01:20 PM
rocketman1988 rocketman1988 is online now
 
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Default yes

...but it the case of the 767, some of those bundles were as big around as a half dollar...

Anyone remember those half dollars?
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Bob
Aerospace Engineer '88

RV-10
Structure - 90% Done
Cabin Top - Aaarrghhh...
Doors - Done
On Gear
290 HP Barrett Hung
ShowPlanes Cowl with Skybolts Fitted - Beautiful
Wiring...

Dues Paid 2018,...Thanks DR+
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  #30  
Old 10-24-2018, 01:56 PM
Ed_Wischmeyer's Avatar
Ed_Wischmeyer Ed_Wischmeyer is offline
 
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There's a whole 'nother part of documenting the wiring when it comes to avionics. Knowing what individual pins and wires are is nice, but it's also nice to know things at a higher level -- such as, serial port #1 from device A goes to serial port #3 on device D, that kind of thing. And similarly, all the input and output port settings on each device, all the autopilot gains, everything.

I documented all that in a spreadsheet, saved it as a pdf and have it on my cell phone. If I'm ever in the boonies with an avionics problem, they'll have the manuals with all the pinouts, but I'll be able to give them the as-installed sytem overview. There's a big difference...

And the avionics folks have standard color coding conventions. Better to use industry standards than invent your own.

Ed
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