Can't find 24awg solid core wire?

Just go buy some CAT5 cable… take off the outer casing and you will have 8 colourful strands of 24awg solid core wire at your disposal.

I noticed some folks were having trouble finding this stuff, so I thought I share my solution.

**"***For PCBs and devices, 20-26 AWG (I have come to like solid 24 AWG most) insulated wire has an appropriate thickness, works well with crimping (especially for .110" connection and chaining), and fits into a PCB well. 18 AWG wire is too large and rigid, and 28 AWG is often too fragile. Color-coded connectors for 18-22 AWG wire will be red and not blue or yellow; 24 AWG wire and folded 26 AWG wire works for red connectors as well, but do have very small connectors coded yellow for them. *"

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I’ve got a ton of leftover speaker wire that shipped with my speakers that I don’t use (they’re 20 or 22 gauge, real thin stuff). Could I split it in half and use the two wires for hooking up stuff too?

Why didn’t I think of that, ive got tons of the stuff lying around from my networking class a few years ago. Although surely you mean 8 strands?

Thanks for the tip either way :slight_smile:


I concur with using Cat5 cable. Im a network admin and find all sorts of wonderful uses for Cat5. is also your friend in case you all didn’t know…

The guy who sells hacked pads on here said that he uses speaker wire. I’ve used cat5 cable as well. I still prefer (maybe ignorantly) 22awg solid wire. It just seems sturdier IMHO.

Isn’t using stranded wire a pain in the ass? Or does it soak up solder nicely?

This is what I use. It makes for neat wiring cause the stuff is four wires coated with a plastic substance that keeps them neatly stuck together. Just use and exacto knive to split one out.

I got 2 meters of the cat 5 for free from an electrical wholesaler… that should be plenty to wire up a stick :smiley:

I go to the local telecommunications supply house. They sell a lot of electrical stuff as well. From there I get Cat-3 25 pair (I think it’s 25 some where in the 20’s range) and it’s more than sufficient, so about 50 wires. It’s about .30 cents a foot so 10 feet lasts me a while. It’s good since all the wires are color coded and it’s really good to work with. It beats buying solid on a roll that is single color from the local electronics store where it’s 5 bucks for a ten foot roll.

I started up the wiring for my arcade stick and nabbed a loose Cat5 around the office. I gutted the wire only to find that it was made up of stranded wires. I ended up going to a local electronics speciality store and picked up a 6’ stretch and the QDs.

I’m glad it was cheap, but I can think of more fun things to do than gutting Cat5 and untwisting pairs.

Anyone have any quick shortcuts to gutting and untwisting those wires?