WBT Spades -- Crimping needed??

I just purchased some Canare 4S11 cable and am looking to terminate them properly. I'd like to connect the speaker end of the cable with spades (biwire), and so far I've read that WBT make the best spades.

However, it was not clear to me whether I can insert wires directly into the WBT spades or whether I need to insert a sleeve onto the wires before adding on the spades.

I have no crimping tools and am not looking forward to have to purchase any, so any help is appreciated.
The WBT spades are locked on with 2 set screws. I am not sure how well the set screws will hold on bare wire. One thing that you can try, I've never done this, is to buy some brass compression ferrules from the harware store and crimp them down with a pair a pliers. The compression ferrules could be found in the plumbing department. Like I said, I have never tried this and am not sure how ell it would work.
I would not at all say that WBT are the best spades that can be had. However, if you like them then by all means use them.

I feel that maleable gold over copper spades form a better contact when crimped down by the binding post than the stiff, non-maleable spades. Also, soldering bare wire into a spade with quad-eutectic solder makes for the best "non-jointed" connection possible.
Get in touch with Rich Moore at WBT:

801-621-1500 or rich@wbtusa.com

you may want to check out their website www.wbtusa.com

I met Rich at CES, helluva nice guy. Best, Jeff
You can check the whole procedure of wire preparation, for use with the WBT connectors, at www.partsexpress.com .
They show step by step how to install the connectors. please be advised that you will need to buy the correct
crimp sleeve and special crimping tool.

The connector has two Torx screws, one is a strain relief for the cable and the other one holds the crimp sleeve against the connector. Please be advised that the crimping has to be done using the special tool that WBT sells, you won't be able to get the special shape needed to insert the crimp sleeve/wire assembly into the connector.

The screws used are very small so if you use bare wire inside the connector you won't get a good connection.
Good luck.
Hepl - very good explanation. One thing I can add is that you can buy different size screws. Parts Express sells at least one upsized WBT screw (7mm?) for working with smaller cables. Rich Moore can also get you other sizes - and I agree, he's a very nice and helpful fellow.

At least one store I came across (can't remember which one) will mail you the WBT crimping tool at no charge as a short-term loaner - that's a nice service, since the tool is $50 or so. I ended up buying the tool and a whole bunch of crimp sleeves, and I have been VERY happy, given the number of self-terminated cables I have. I've switched ends around to tailor to different situations, and I really love the convenience the crimp-sleeve WBT connectors offer.
Mwilson - You are right about the convenience of the crimp sleeve, one can always change connectors as one upgrades the system. 1/4 spade to 5/16 spade, spade to banana, straight banana to angle banana, etc. I have been using Kimber 8-TC, so far I have changed the amp end twice.
Happy listening.

You've gotten lots of good advice regarding the need for crimp sleeves when installing the WBT spades. However, it's not necessary to use the "special" WBT crimp tool. I've installed these spades myself using a standard wire stripper/cutter that also has a crimp die, which is much cheaper than the WBT pliers, and just as effective. You can find crimp tools at Home Depot, Radioshack, or anywhere that sells electrical hardware. Also, Parts Express has a great instructions for proper crimping technique here:


I'd recommend that you use the WBT-0436 sleeve (10 AWG), for the Canare 4S11. This is almost the perfect size if you're going to insert 2 runs (2 x 14AWG = 11AWG) into each spade, with a little bit of extra room to spare.
I have Canare 4S11 with WBT spades. I found it is very easy to connect the spades using just WBT sleeves and the tool supplied with the spades. Just slip a ferrule (sleeve) over the exposed 4S11 wire, insert the end into the WBT spade and tighten with the wrench. The screws compress the ferrule onto the wire, thereby connecting the spades quite snugly. Don't waste a dime on a crimping tool. You don't need it.
While you might be able to get by without the tool, what Tvad suggests could strip your screws/screwholes if you're using smaller wire and end up extending the set screw toward the end of its adjustable length.

The screws and the body of the connector are copper, which is a very soft metal. If you end up putting strain on the last thread or two of the screw, the threads on the screw or the screwhole _will_ give way. Trust me. I've done it.

Sometimes, having the right equipment is better.
Mwilson makes a good point, but what he describes sounds to me like a case of using a ferrule that is too large for the wire. Using the proper size sleeve for the spade and gauge of wire you are using should eliminate all problems. As I recall, the WBT website has a search tool that will tell you the proper ferrule to buy given the wire gauge you are terminating.
Wow guys thanks for all the great advice! I'll definitely look into all the options. Thanks y'all I appreciate it.