The right tool for the job - Crimping Battery Cables

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Sep 14, 2003
Centennial, Colorado
I have had a hard time crimping battery cables

The bench vise worked OK, but made the crimps flat. Then doing the other end when working on the truck impractical

So I bought the hammer crimp. It didnt work for me

Then I Bought these big handled crimpers and just couldn't get good crimps

Then I bought this Hydraulic Crimping tool on Amazon and it was a breeze. Nice looking and easy crimps. I highly recommend it
Amazon product ASIN B06XR8BY65
The one you got from Amazon looks like a carbon copy of the one HF sells. I agree with perfect.
Got a demo pic? Thx

No I didnt take a pick

You match the bit to the size wire. You then crank the handle with the wire/connector until the connector doesnt move. Make sure the wire is in good and then pump the handle until you can't

Then turn a little wheel that is on the other side you cant see and it releases the pressure
I've got one of those "hammer" crimpers, never liked it and never through it did a good job. I need to acquire a good crimper , so I can make my own battery cables ...etc. I've seen some good reviews on recent dedicated hydraulic crimpers.....likely the tool to acquire.
yup, got the same one. Works a treat (so far). Not the highest quality tool but very inexpensive on amazon for the usefulness. But do check the number and size of the dies that come with your intended purchase, they vary somewhat. And oddly enough, IIRC, the HF version is significantly more expensive than the amazon ones for the same thing apparently.

However, should I have to buy another one, I'd go with the other ubiquitous style, with the 2 parallel slots die holders and the bolt at the end. (More often seen on the "16 tons" units.) I think those have a better design. The dies on my style have a wimpy locator pin that I suspect will shear sooner or later and then the die will likely be useless, whereas the other style AFAIK does not have that pin and you could build any custom die you want very easily for it from a couple bits of steel. Unfortunately for smaller jobs, the included dies start usually bigger with the 16 ton units, but that is fairly easily remedied.
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I like my Molex battery lug crimper only 75 bucks. Made in Taiwan but still very beefy.

yup, you'll need a hydraulic press. The other large manual one does work ok for the sizes under 2 AWG.

I've rented them in the past for electrical jobs, as the Greenlee ones are expensive to buy. Maybe you can rent them for the half-day for less money than the HF one costs. That may be worth considering if you'll only use it once and then have to store it, I suppose you could always sell off that HF one too.
Huh. I have the hammer type and the big bolt-cutter style, and they have been working great for me. Crimp the ring on, melt some solder in, then adhesive-lined heat shrink. Makes really nice crimps, I've gone all the way up to 1/0.
Huh. I have the hammer type and the big bolt-cutter style, and they have been working great for me. Crimp the ring on, melt some solder in, then adhesive-lined heat shrink. Makes really nice crimps, I've gone all the way up to 1/0.

That's a different process. A 12-ton irreversible hydraulic crimper is used in building lightning protection, and is for those sets of lugs. You can't use solder for the lightning protection as it creates the weakest link in the circuit.

For automotive, your lug will need to match its application, including assembly.
I can't help but think that a (or better: several / wide) nice controlled hex hydraulic crimp is way better than a "crimp" of sorts done by dimpling one side with an impact tool...
I can't help but think that it makes absolutely no difference. We're not building the space shuttle here...
There are some interesting reports out there on the effects of various types of crimping on the quality of the connection. The cross-section pics are especially telling.
Simmer down boys

I posted this thread because I could not get good reliable crimps with the other methods I posted. This worked great for me. I am sure the other methods I posted worked great for others as stated by a few

It was the right tool for the right job FOR ME. Others may have been in the same boat so I shared
Ken - can you provide us a link to your tool pls? Thx.
Sorry dude, the color on the background must be matching the color of the amazon link or something as it is totally invisible to me :bang:

Looks like this is the one amazon link

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