Sleeving – How much sleeving will I need?
The best and really only way is to measure them yourself or look at the datasheet for your psu. This can be found on the website for the manufactor of your psu or a review site as well.
Now you just have to look at the cable length and then add them up….
Let’s say you have a 24pin cable and the datasheet says it is 520mm long, so:
24x520mm = 12,480 millimeters = 12.48 meters
So for just the 24pin you will need 12.48 meters of sleeving.
And then you continue to do the same for the eps, sata, molex, and pcie cables. (not to mention any other things/cables you want sleeved)
Once you have everything added up you will want to add 10-20% more sleeve to it just in case you mess something up or perhaps forget about something.
Heatshrink – How much heatshrink will I need?
Most places sell precut HS now, so that makes it as simple as adding it up with the rule that you will need 2x pieces of HS per wire.
So you add up all of the wires of your cables/things that you will be sleeving.
I.E. a 24pin cable has 24 pins. So you will need 48 cuts of HS for just the 24pin.
I always add 50-100 more pieces no matter what so you don’t have to settle for a messed up look, even more so if this is your first time sleeving.
If you are using tubing that is not precut, I believe the rule of thumb is to find out how much 20% of your total order of sleeving will be and order that amount in HS.
But again I would choose to try and do the math, for example is you are using 15mm cuts of hs, you would need 30mm of hs per wire, and if you are using 20mm cuts you would need 40mm per wire and so on. Remember to add the equivalent of 50 to 100 extra pieces so you can get a little extra.
Sleeving Types – What is all out there and what is the best?
This question is asked all the time, but it is a very subjective one. The reason for that being that everyone has a personal choice. So while I cant say which ones is the best I will say which ones is the most popular, and we will start with that one right off the bat.
MDPC – MDPC Sleeve and products has been considered the quality choice in the sleeving industry and as such they have lived up to that name over and over. The owner Nils stops at nothing to hold his products to the highest standard and will never relent in upholding that standard.
The sleeving itself is the perfect size for single sleeving and has an awesome coverage of the wire, however if you are doing white sleeving you will need to prep your cables which will be covered later on in the FAQ.
The color choices are right on par with what you would want in your system. Also the Heat Shrink color choices are one of a kind and will outdo anything out there at this time.
But I will stop blabbing and let you look for yourself, You can check out MDPC on their website located here: http://www.mdpc-x.com/
PARACORD – Paracord sleeve is a very popular sleeving choice for those that are on a budget, however that does come at a price. Sleeving with paracord is just like sleeving with shoelaces and the material is nylon, and feels a bit like rope. Now if it is stretched right it will not feel floppy and work just fine, but you will have to take some extra time with it to make sure you get a good result.
The color choices of paracord are super abundant and you can find any color you want in at least a few shades.
Paracord comes in a few different sizes but the most popular sizes for sleeving will be 450lb paracord and 550lb paracord – the difference between the two is some extra strands in the middle of it (the core) and the 550lb being very slightly bigger. Both will work just fine for sleeving.
For finding paracord you simply need to do a search for “450 Paracord” or “550 Paracord” There is many different places to find it, and for the most part the price will be about $10-15 per 100ft roll.
CEANCUT (techflex cleancut) – Techflex CleanCut sleeving has become a popular choice for sleeving because of its full coverage and its super cheap price from an E-Bay distributor, FurryLetters.
The main downfall of CleanCut is that it only comes in 2 colors, black and gray. The sleeving itself is a plastic type and is very flexible and works perfect for single sleeving.
Prices vary from seller to seller but like stated earlier most buy it from FurryLetters on E-Bay, The main link to his shop can be found here: http://stores.ebay.com/FURRYLETTERS
FTW Sleeving – FTW Sleeving is currently undergoing a full sleeving and heatshrink revamp and the new sleeving will be in soon. Untill then I would suggest that you wait until the new products have been reviewed to purchase the new sleeving. Because why buy old when you can buy new? I will be updating this when the new sleeving hits the market to keep you informed.
FTW also is a source of paracord, which is the same found on other sites as well. To check out their current stock lineup please visit them here: http://ftwpc.com/
Other Sleevings – There is a few other types of sleeving out there at this moment, but I have not added the due to their popularity not being very high and the price or quality being too high or too low. I will be adding the other types as I find some time.
Heatshrink Size – What kind of heatshrink and size should I buy?
This is another question that gets asked all the time. There is a few things you need to know about heatshrink to make a good choice.
1.Shrink Ratio – what this means is how many times smaller the shrink will get once it has been heated from its original size. The smaller the shrink gets the tighter the hold will be on the shrink and wire. So, the lowest shrink ratio you will want is 3:1, but the best ratio you cant get is 4:1.
2.Wall Thickness and Glue or no Glue. – Wall thickness refers to the actual thickness of the actual heatshrink it self or the actual materials size, again smaller is better with this as any added thickness to the shrink will make the shrunken diameter larger. So thin walled will be your best bet. I have also seen and used glue lined shrink myself, and although it seems like a great idea, it becomes messy and almost always has a thick wall on it, so right away it goes outside the parameters of what a good heatshrink should be.
3.Precut or not Precut – This is a personal choice but most pro sleevers will tell you right off the bat – get the precut and save yourself some time and allow yourself to get a clean look. It is not really cheaper to cut it yourself when you factor in how many time you may need to fix your sleeving. If you need some longer lengths then buy a small amount of it for the special parts.
4.Shrink Size and Length – For the most part the best diameter for shrink is either 3/16 in or Â¼ in, this will allow you to get your shrink over most sleeve and wire combos if you have the right ratio. For length you will want to use what most pro sleevers use and that is 15mm, if you buy the precut most places already have it cut at that size.
With that all being said, what Heatshrink do I recommend?
I suggest you look at MDPC Heatshrink as it has everything we listed above as well as high melting point, what I mean by that is it will take a great amount of heat before the actual shrink melts. Also it comes in many color choices. It can be found at: http://www.mdpc-x.com/
Otherwise, I would suggest getting this Â¼ in 3:1 thinwalled heatshrink from this link here: http://www.alliedelec.com/search/productdetail.aspx?SKU=6890391#tab=Specs
It has a cheap price and is a great product.
Tools – What sleeving tools will I need for a clean looking job?
You will need at least some basic tools as well as some advanced depending on how much sleeving you are going to be doing. Now you can use staples and such, but I highly discourage this as it can be more of a hassle than it needs to be if you just buy the right tools and do it right the first time.
I have made an in-depth purchasing guide as well as a video break down of each tool and why it is important.
To view the guide, please look at my How-To Article on how to sleeve located here: https://www.overclock.net/t/1122053/lutro0-customs-sleeving-tool-tutorials.
Also here is the full purchase list of tools: Click the spoiler to see.
Click to read the full list of Must Have,and Optional & Advanced Sleeving Tools (Click to show)
Molex Extraction Tool. Part Number : 11-03-0044:
Masking tape: Found at most stores.
Lighter: Found at most stores.
Heatgun: There is too many options to list, try Amazon, Ebay, or Froogle.
Exacto Hobby Knife : Found at most stores.
LC Sleeving Tool: Contact me for purchase.
Overlap – http://www.performance-pcs.com/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=1277
Self Adjusting Wire Stripper:
Heat Shrink Cutting Jig : DIY
Big Sharp Knife : Found in most stores.
Soldering Kit : Found in most hobby stores.
How to Sleeve? – And of course this question needed to be asked. And this is by far not an easy one to answer as everyone has their own style. So I will be listing two different styles as well as giving you a link to my own video series that will give you an super in-depth visual guide on how to sleeve many different cables with many different sleeves.
To start this off my friend Nils from MDPC has put together a nice visual guide on his method of sleeving that works well with MDPC Sleeve. This guide was used with permission from the maker himself; please do not repost this without first getting permission.
And the second guide will be a link to my video sleeving guides, I am not posting them here as it is by far way too much information to repost, and you can keep up to date by following the thread itself. To see the guides please follow this link: https://www.overclock.net/t/1122053/lutro0-customs-sleeving-tool-tutorials
Wire Colors & Voltages – What do all these colors mean? Or what wire goes where?
For the most part all power supplies follow a basic standard for the motherboard pin side, which means for a 24 pin that connects to the motherboard the pin out and voltages will always be the same. What does differ however is in what order they come out of the power supply itself as that is totally up to the manufacture on the layout. For the PSU side pin outs you will need to look on the makers website or request it from them by email or other means. Otherwise I have shown below a few basic pin out and voltages for a few different cables.
Connector Types & Where to buy? – I get this question all the time. Lutro0, where do you buy all of your connectors and what connector do I need for this or that? Well, I hope to answer all of that! I will list the most common connector names and post a link where you can purchase them.