How to solder a 6mm stereo chassis mount jack

Written by douglas quaid
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How to solder a 6mm stereo chassis mount jack
Solder is pronounced "sodder." (soldering image by Bube from

A 6 mm (1/4 inch) stereo chassis mount jack has three pins inside, one each for the tip, ring and sleeve sections of the plug. Each pin is connected to a solder lug, which usually has an eye hole that aids in connecting and soldering a wire. A chassis mount jack usually comes packaged with a nut and washer that allow you to mount it on the case of the device to which you're connecting the. You would commonly use 6 mm (1/4 inch) stereo jacks for headphones, whereas you'd use mono jacks for electric guitars, amplifiers and other electric instruments.

Things you need

  • Soldering iron
  • Sponge
  • Pliers
  • Rosin-core solder

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  1. 1

    Plug in the soldering iron and let it heat up.

  2. 2

    Wipe the tip of the hot iron on a damp sponge to clean it.

  3. 3

    Identify the solder lugs on the jack for the tip, ring and sleeve connections. The jack has three pins that connect to the three parts of the plug, and each pin has it's own solder lug. The solder lugs won't be labelled on the jack itself, but the packaging it came in may have a diagram. If not, plug a stereo cable into the jack and see which pin connects to each part of the plug. Follow the pins to their solder lugs.

  4. 4

    Strip about a centimetre of insulation off the end of the signal ground wire in the device you're soldering the jack to. Thread the exposed wire through the eye in the solder lug for the sleeve connection.

  5. 5

    Use a pair of pliers to twist the exposed wire around itself so it stays on the solder lug.

  6. 6

    Touch the tip of the iron to both the exposed wire and solder lug and wait a few seconds for them to heat up.

  7. 7

    Apply solder to the join. The solder will melt and flow over the joint, filling in the eye in the solder lug and coating the exposed wire.

  8. 8

    Remove the iron and allow the solder to cool. Solder only takes a couple of seconds to cool, but be careful not to move the wire or jack while the solder is setting. If you disturb the solder while it's cooling, you'll get what's called a "cold join," resulting in a faulty or intermittent connection. A good solder join looks smooth and silvery, and a cold joint has a dull, cloudy grey colour.

  9. 9

    Repeat Steps 4 to 8 for the other two wires. Solder the right channel stereo wire to the ring connection, and solder the left channel wire to the solder lug for the tip.

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