How to hand crimp TE/AMP terminal part 103944-1

I periodically use part TE/AMP 103944-1 and its mating part to create quick disconnects in my wire harnesses. I do this by painstakingly hand crimping a stripped wire end into each terminal with pliers and then soldering to make a good contact, being careful to not end up with a terminal that can’t insert into the housing, which takes a lot of time.
I see there is a very expensive assembly tool (58336-1) which doesn’t even include the (universal?) hand mechanism. It appears to be useful for high volume which I am not doing. Is there any other less expensive tool for these terminals that simply lets me crimp a single terminal onto a single wire cleanly, so I don’t need to solder? I’ve looked a bit but didn’t notice anything. Wondering if some tool exists like what I use for my Molex connector terminals, i.e., 0638259700.

Welcome to the Digi-Key TechForum jp1.
The crimp head 58336-1 is the only crimper we list for this connector.
These contacts are IDC, so you do not have to strip the wire.
You lay the insulated wire on it and force the wire down into the contact. It is designed to cut through the insulation and make contact with the wire. A small screwdriver may help install the wire.
Some connectors like A30827-ND, have a tool like A9982-ND, to help push the wire in.
I don’t know if this tool would work for the 58336-1 connector, but you can check the datasheet, and see what you think.

As mentioned, 103944-1 is equipped with pre-loaded insulation displacement contacts, which are perhaps best suited to a production context where tooling costs can easily be recovered through labor savings.

Use of the corresponding loose-contact variant (103653-1, see “associated products” down the page for contacts, sold separately) would permit use of generic F-crimp tooling, of which these are perhaps the most popular.

Please note that it is generally not recommended to solder crimped stranded-wire connections, as this has been demonstrated to be less reliable due to risk of wire fracture compared to a properly executed crimp connection alone.

Thank you both for the replies.

I am comparing the Digi-Key pages for the 103944-1 and the 103653-1 but the physical difference in the terminals (which come separately for the latter) is not apparent to me. If they are the same, and these crimpers you suggest will do the job, then it appears the 349 Adafruit crimper may be what I need for the terminals I am already getting with the 103944-1. i.e. I am already taking the partially inserted pin out of the housing to connect to my 26 awg wire then reinserting it all the way.

Please reply on whether the 349 will work with the loose (separated) removed pins of the 103944-1 (which I already have a stock of).
Thanks again!

The loose-piece contacts such as 5-104505-3 have two separate crimp regions, one of which is to form a connection with a stripped wire end, the other to grasp the insulation.

The pre-loaded contacts are an insulation displacement type, designed to establish contact by piercing through the insulation of a non-stripped wire. They also have a crimp band, designed to grip the insulation.


All of these use what’s known as an “F-crimp”, tooling for which generally has a sort of heart-shaped aperture when closed, in order to curve the free ends of the crimp band inward. Inserting a contact upside down will tend to just mash the crimp flat or sideways, so some care is needed.

General purpose tools like the '349 allow a person, with some practice, to make reasonably good crimps with most of the F-style contacts available. The result is not as ideal or consistent as that achievable with purpose-designed tooling, but quite adequate for occasional, non-production use.

OK I get it now. So the following should be what I need, if I got the mating part numbers correct:

Thanks very much!

looks reasonable to me.