[-Closed-] High-Quality Multi-Purpose 3.5mm Jacks

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NV
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[-Closed-] High-Quality Multi-Purpose 3.5mm Jacks

Post by NV » Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:30 am

------------------------------ This order is closed as of Nov. 28th ------------------------------

This is a group order for the following 3.5mm jacks:

Image
Image

What's so special about these jacks? In my ever humble opinion they are the best 3.5mm jacks on the market. They have the buttery smooth action of Cliff jacks, the solid hold of PJ-301s, the reliable switching of Kobiconn 16PJ138s, and a tuxedo appearance that increases modular sex appeal by 10 International Sex Units. They are a 4-contact jack which includes the typical sleeve, tip, and switched contacts, as well as an additional ring connection for anyone that may want to use it as a stereo jack, use splitting cables to access multiple functions from one jack, or throw in some bizarre multi-staged insert feature. If you don't want the ring connection then don't wire the ring lead up and the jack will function exactly as a standard switching mono jack.

These jacks are from the same company as the jacks you'll see on TipTop, Synthwerks, Doepfer parallel-mount modules (like the A-183-2), and the Subconscious Communications Plan B reissues, although these include the additional ring contact as well as some other differences detailed below. The bushing is non-conductive, meaning you can implement these jacks in areas which require (or recommend) insulated ground. They come with a smooth circular nut rather than hex or knurled, which in addition to looking very unique are also able to fit in much tighter spaces if needed - each nut is 10mm across, meaning you can cram one of these in 2HP if necessary and you're into Nut-On-Nut Action(TM). The nuts can be tightened by hand and then given a little clockwise tap with a flathead screwdriver into the slot to seat them nice and snug, which I've found to be far easier for mounting in tight spaces than trying to cram the edge of a socket driver between nuts/switches/whatever. Conversely you could just use pliers with a bit of masking tape on the end to prevent panel scratching, or if you're into efficiency you can easily cut or file a slot into a cheap flathead or piece of sheet metal with a nibbler tool, file, or dremel. There is also a specialized tool available for these nuts from Wiha (PK Elektronik in Europe and KC Tools in the US) [edit: the teeth on this driver are apparently too large to fit the nuts. They may be able to be shaped to size, or may not...proceed with caution]. I personally prefer the hand-tighten/flathead method, which I've found to be a bit easier and less scuffed-panel-worrying than using a socket driver for hex nuts. Here are some glamour shots of the nuts/jacks fitted on various modules:

Image

The switching mechanism is bomb-proof. It does not rely on an isolated spring or precise positioning - it's two metal bars that are either touching or not, and if there is no plug in there they will make a switched connection (see naughty nude shot below - note the sleeve contact has been removed for ease of viewing). I've molested these jacks with multiple plug types and sharp probes in every diabolical way I could conceive and the switch still popped right back to where it should once the plug was removed. Furthermore there is a plastic strain relief built inside the jack itself, meaning with the jack oriented with the "angled" end upward even a dementedly tall stackcable tower will not place any strain on the contacts or otherwise damage the jack.

Image

They have wide-profile solder tabs with drilled holes that can easily accommodate hand-wiring. All four solder tabs are rear-mounted which also allows for quick and easy soldering directly to a parallel-mount PCB. The ground tabs are located in the rear as well, meaning no additional flying-lead connections for parallel mounting like you would find on side-tab Kobiconns. At this rate, this jack may very well save the world some day.

I've done the research into purchasing these to fill my own personal supply for an end-all reliable and multi-purpose DIY jack. After hearing from others who expressed interest I'm offering a chance for people to get in on the order and enjoy the benefits of direct bulk pricing. Mouser offers a similar jack (without tip-switching capability) for $1.36 each (Mouser 161-0352-EX) - I think you'll find the prices from this order to be just a tad more agreeable than that.

The price for fewer than 1,000 jacks will be $0.30 per jack
If you purchase 1,000 or more the price goes to $0.28 per jack

These are high-quality jacks that usually carry quite a price tag. I'm not doing this so that I may spend my days rolling in the two dozen nickels of profit I might amass, otherwise I'd pull a Mouser and add another $1 to each jack. Since this is a dumbass-DIY-thing (DADIYT) rather than a profitable business venture there are a few terms to make this a sanity-conducive experience. Here are the details:
  • All orders must be in multiples of 50 (50, 100, 150, etc).
  • The circular nuts are included with the jacks in your order. You can also order the nut only for $0.07 per nut. You do not need to order the nuts if you do not want extras - all jacks will come with nuts included.
  • Shipping within the US will be USPS Priority. Exact jack amounts per package will be determined once the jacks show up and I can see how many fit in which dimensions, but as a very rough estimate expect the prices to be $7 for 50 - 100 jacks, $13 for 150 - 600 jacks, and $17 for 650 to 1,000 jacks. These prices should stay the same but the amount of jacks fitting in the boxes may shift up or down once I have enough on hand to experiment with. If you want a quantity over 1,000 we'll discuss shipping and find something affordable.
  • International shipping will be determined per person/country but will obviously be more expensive. Microscopial (Ross of Lamond Design) has very generously offered to be the shipping point for European orders and Very Angry Mobster (Shannon) has offered the same for Australian orders, both of which could potentially save orders from those corners of the world a healthy bit on shipping. For other areas of the globe expect the cost to range somewhere around 2x to 3x the domestic prices listed above, depending on where you are. Once we've narrowed down orders and costs I'll let everyone know. In the meantime, when placing your order please make a note of the country your address is in so I can organize more affordable international shipping for everyone.
  • Payment will be via PayPal. Once the order has been finalized I will send you a PM with your total and instructions for payment. At that point you will be welcome to pay whenever you wish (and it would be appreciated) but payment is not required until the jacks are in my hands and ready to ship to you.
  • The factory has suggested a lead-time of 4 weeks from time of order, with shipping taking (ideally) another couple weeks after that. In other words, it may take up to two months for the jacks to get to you after the order is placed. This is comparable to any other DIY group order we've had here, but it's worth noting for those who may be in a hurry.
I'm attaching the datasheet to this thread for those who wish to poke around and see if it works with their plans. Note that this is the LJE0352-4R - ignore the various other diagrams listed on the sheet. I've tested this jack with various panel drill holes and have found 8mm to be safe. You might get away with 7.9mm, but I'm not sure that 0.1mm is worth the potential hassle.

I will be keeping this thread open for approximately two weeks, provided there aren't any sudden surges of interest late in the game. Once the amounts are finalized I'll place the order and try to look cool for 4-6 weeks. Any information I get on availability will be posted to this thread in the "Updates" post below.

If you're interested in placing an order please voice the quantity you would like in this thread so I can keep things organized. Please only commit to what you will be able to purchase - this is a big overseas freight order for a rather specialty item, so I'm hoping to keep margins relatively tight.

If you have any questions feel free to post in this thread or PM me. If you like your jacks bold, black, and smooth like a fine coffee you will like this thread.
Attachments
LJE0352-4R.pdf
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Last edited by NV on Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:06 pm, edited 19 times in total.

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NV
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Post by NV » Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:32 am

Updates:

Nov. 28 - Order placed, ironing out the details with the factory.
Dec. 3 - Payment to the factory confirmed and manufacture underway.
Dec. 6 - Jacks have been shipped by the factory with arrival expected within a week.
Dec. 8 - Invoices have been sent out to everyone who has PMed me their info.
Dec. 11 - The jacks have arrived! I'll be spending some time organizing and packaging them before shipping them your way.
Dec. 14 - The first shipment has gone out, which includes all currently paid USA orders and all of Australia.
Dec. 17 - The second shipment has gone out, which includes all currently paid USA orders and the international orders outside of Europe.
Dec. 22 - The third shipment has gone out, which includes all European orders and a couple others.


Further info:
- PCB footprints
- Jack/part size comparisons, possible nut driver tool
- Nut only orders
Last edited by NV on Sat Dec 22, 2012 4:31 pm, edited 12 times in total.

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NV
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Post by NV » Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:32 am

Orders: (as of 1/7)

The jacks have arrived and I've started shipping them out. The list below shows the amounts and invoice status. "Sent" means I've sent an invoice to you, which means you've also sent me your PayPal/shipping address. If your name is RED that means I have not received a reply from you with PayPal/shipping info. Please send that info my way and I'll send the invoice out.

North America and others: (shipping via NV)
Image

Europe: (shipping via Microscopial)
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Australia: (shipping via very angry mobster)
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In case my lists are too cryptic, Microscopial will be handling orders from Europe, Very Angry Mobster will be handling orders from Australia, and I'll be handling orders from North America and a few others.


International Group Shipments: (Europe and Australia)

Once the jacks arrive I will be shipping all of the international orders on the appropriate list to Microscopial and VAM. After that point they will be in charge of finding the appropriate shipping methods to get them out to you.

Please note that they will need an additional payment from you for their costs in shipping the jacks your way. Additionally they may need help in paying off whatever potential customs fees they may encounter from the big box o' jacks I'll be sending them. They will contact you with these details once the jacks arrive on their end. These are good people selflessly offering their time to help save everyone some money, so please do what you can to help them out and make them feel super special.

I'll be shipping the international orders to Microscopial and VAM in one big box each, so if you are in one of those groups please be sure to have your payment in to me sooner rather than later so as to avoid holding up the shipment. The jacks likely won't be here until after the new year, so that should provide everyone plenty of time. In order to cover the costs of shipping the big box o' jacks to them, I'll be asking each of the orders from that box for an amount proportional to the number of jacks you've ordered. Going by some preliminary math, once all's said and done this process should save you about 50% or more on shipping.


Regional Shipments: (North America and others)

I'll tell you the shipping cost, you include it with your jack payment, box go house, you like.
Last edited by NV on Mon Jan 07, 2013 10:16 am, edited 23 times in total.

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consumed
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Post by consumed » Sat Nov 17, 2012 4:02 am

damn. those look rad.
:bacon:

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executiveBlaster
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Post by executiveBlaster » Sat Nov 17, 2012 4:51 am

I'm in for 200, to start :) Thanks for taking the plunge for the rest of us!

edit: changed to 200!
Last edited by executiveBlaster on Fri Nov 23, 2012 6:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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aladan
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Post by aladan » Sat Nov 17, 2012 5:00 am

Where does the fourth connection get soldered? I can only see three solder tabs in those photos.
(edit: none for me at this time, money problems *sob*)
Last edited by aladan on Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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roglok
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Post by roglok » Sat Nov 17, 2012 5:25 am

Very classy!

I'd be in for 50-100 depending on final international (Europe) shipping costs...

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Revok
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Post by Revok » Sat Nov 17, 2012 7:00 am

Nice! 100 for me. Thanks for doing this.

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lessavyfav
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Post by lessavyfav » Sat Nov 17, 2012 7:31 am

Handsome jacks. Funny write up! 50 for me please.
I'm Tim and I'm excited for modular synthesis! :nana:

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raisinbag
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Post by raisinbag » Sat Nov 17, 2012 8:11 am

Wow they look nice. I have been using erthenvars with no prob, though I haven't used for switching, and have read that switching can be a problem. Will the jacks offered here fit in the layout on a pcb where the erthenvars are speced for? If so I'm sure I'd take at least 100.

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Microscopial
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Post by Microscopial » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:35 am

I'd be in for100 if shipping to the uk is reasonable
lamond design
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email/ lamonddesign@gmail.com
flickr/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/59671775@N03/
twitter/ lamonddesign http://twitter.com/#!/
facebook/ ross lamond http://www.facebook.com/ross.lamond1 or follow the lamonddesign page
website/ www.lamonddesign.co.uk

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Memory_Leak
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Post by Memory_Leak » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:44 am

^^^^ + 1
will take the same :)
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tony d
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Post by tony d » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:46 am

I'd be in for 100
Thanks !

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Microscopial
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Post by Microscopial » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:51 am

hey id be happy to b the uk drop off point and i could repost to everyone in uk/europe to save costs may mean you get a lot more commitments from over the pond to help with price breaks

cheers ross
lamond design
"working with wood"

email/ lamonddesign@gmail.com
flickr/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/59671775@N03/
twitter/ lamonddesign http://twitter.com/#!/
facebook/ ross lamond http://www.facebook.com/ross.lamond1 or follow the lamonddesign page
website/ www.lamonddesign.co.uk

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Post by akrylik » Sat Nov 17, 2012 10:31 am

aladan wrote:Where does the fourth connection get soldered? I can only see three solder tabs in those photos.
Regardless of the answer to that question I'm in for 200.
In the photo he has removed the "ring" contact so we can see inside. You can see the slot where it used to be.

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Memory_Leak
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Post by Memory_Leak » Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:02 am

Microscopial wrote:hey id be happy to b the uk drop off point and i could repost to everyone in uk/europe to save costs may mean you get a lot more commitments from over the pond to help with price breaks

cheers ross
Very kind of you Ross :) great idea !
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NV
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Post by NV » Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:10 am

aladan wrote:Where does the fourth connection get soldered? I can only see three solder tabs in those photos.
Regardless of the answer to that question I'm in for 200.
One of the tabs was removed in the guts photo so you could see the switching mechanism a bit better - the empty slot on the left side of the jacks holds another tab. The 4 tabs are all in the rear one on each side of the jack, and all 4 have the same solder tabs with drilled holes for either wiring or PCB soldering.

Here's a PCB footprint diagram from the datasheet:

Image

R = Ring (stereo/whatever)
TS = Switched contact
T = Tip (signal)
S = Sleeve (ground)



Microscopial wrote:hey id be happy to b the uk drop off point and i could repost to everyone in uk/europe to save costs may mean you get a lot more commitments from over the pond to help with price breaks

cheers ross
That is very generous of you and would be fantastic - anything that helps people save some cash would be a great help. Once I get an idea of the quantity of international orders we'll talk and see what we can organize. I'll amend the first post with this info.



raisinbag wrote:Wow they look nice. I have been using erthenvars with no prob, though I haven't used for switching, and have read that switching can be a problem. Will the jacks offered here fit in the layout on a pcb where the erthenvars are speced for? If so I'm sure I'd take at least 100.
The switching contact is in a different position, but the tip and sleeve contacts are in similar positions and in the same size for standard non-switched mono operation. There are some caveats though:

I say "similar" because you may need to flex the sleeve tab outward an additional 1mm for it to fit properly depending on how large the PCB solder pads/slots are. You would need to either remove or cut off the solder tabs for the ring and switched contacts, but that's easy to do with pliers or lead clippers. Additionally the actual body of these jacks is about 1-2mm taller than Erthenvars - this may make a difference in some designs depending on what other mounted components are on the same PCB.

Please take that with a grain of salt as I don't have an actual PJ-301 PCB footprint here to experiment with (PJ-301 = Erthenvar jacks), so my estimations are based off the datasheets. You should be able to flex the sleeve tab out and make it fit, but I wouldn't know definitively until I've actually tried it. I've done the lead bending trick with Switchcraft and other PCB-mounted jacks before without issue so it's at least feasible, but it's admittedly a bit of a kludge.

I'm guessing you're referencing the hexinverter PCBs made for Erthenvar jacks, but unfortunately I don't have any of his PCBs on hand to plug the jacks into and experiment with. To be honest you'd probably be better off just sticking with the Erthenvars with hexinverter PCBs as I think hexinverter mentioned that most of the features on his PCBs don't utilize the switching function anyhow.
Last edited by NV on Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

defenestration
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Post by defenestration » Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:31 am

100 for me, might want more, but definitely at least 100 :tu:

bazrush
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Post by bazrush » Sat Nov 17, 2012 2:11 pm

Put me down for 600, I'm in the UK so if there's a postage sharing arrangement that'd be great. Let me know how much I need to contribute. Thank youuuuuuuuu!!!

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logicgate
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Post by logicgate » Sat Nov 17, 2012 2:27 pm

put me down for 50!

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simfonik
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Post by simfonik » Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:00 pm

How does the depth compare to Kobiconn 16PJ138s?

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demian
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Post by demian » Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:07 pm

500 please.
I am also interested in 500 nuts depending on availability and price.

Thanks!

very angry mobster
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Post by very angry mobster » Sat Nov 17, 2012 8:18 pm

200 please.

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Rod Serling Fan Club
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Post by Rod Serling Fan Club » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:23 pm

What is the panel hole size requirement? They look a little large but it could just be an optical thing :hmm:

idiotunderground
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Post by idiotunderground » Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:45 pm

i'll take 100

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