Im working on making a ultrasonic sustain pedal for a keyboard using an Arduino. I've looked up some tutorials on physical home made sustain pedals and it looks like you need to ground all the wires to send the "Sustain" signal. I've stripped some headphone cable to test it out but all 3 of the cables are already touching! Wouldnt that short them? Im assuming something's protecting them from grounding, but how can I ground them myself?

Just to check that the inside cables weren't shielded, I twisted one of the wires and it untwisted into insulator and wire, there was no internal protected wire.



What's protecting them from shorting is the enamel coating on each strand. That's what gives it its colour.

When you tin the ends with solder the heat of the soldering iron melts off some of the enamel and allows you to make an electrical contact.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Wow, the wires were so thin I cant believe they were coated. I burned off the enamel and I'm able to make connections now. \$\endgroup\$ – Nathan Jan 8 '15 at 23:35

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