I have a couple of connectors which I like to identify. Most of them are on my motorcycle.

This forum contains lots of questions about individual connectors and I don't want to add another one. There must be a professional way how to identify connectors. But how?

In the moment I start with this page https://www.digikey.com/en/resources/connectors/index and then I go down to the details.

Sometimes that works fine, but often there are still a couple of choices which look almost the same.

And sometimes that company just does not have the connector I am looking for. And then?

Is there are clear practical way step by step how to identify any connector?

Edit: Maybe I should ask as part of this question if it is possible at all to do this. Do (motorcycle) manufacturer use existing connectors? Or do they (often) have their unique connectors which can't be bought anywhere else?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Go to the dealer to purchase the connectors, if not then go to a scrap or breakers yard - connectors used on a Suzuki may or definitely will not be the same as those on a Ducati or Yamaha or Triumph or Harley... \$\endgroup\$ – Solar Mike Jul 20 '18 at 4:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yep, a digikey catalog (the paper kind) grab one and start flipping through. For me it's the fastest/easiest to compare connectors \$\endgroup\$ – Voltage Spike Jul 20 '18 at 5:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SolarMike: It's a new KTM and the connectors are not even in the KTM connector catalogue... \$\endgroup\$ – Edgar Jul 20 '18 at 5:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ Perhaps KTM need to update the catalogue... The dealer will have the parts info for that bike - ask. \$\endgroup\$ – Solar Mike Jul 20 '18 at 5:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't want to add another one ... well, you have, so why don't you include some pictures .... when you get an answer, ask how the answerer identified the connector .... is answerer even a word? \$\endgroup\$ – jsotola Jul 20 '18 at 6:35

There is no simple “one-stop shop” for identifying connectors.

The motor cycle manufacturers are liable to use different connectors to the car manufacturers as there is likely to be more exposure to the elements.

So, basically different industries different connectors - the choice or design of a particular connector will depend on its function, space available, ambient conditions (wet, dry, corrosive, heat/cold cycles etc), amount of use - disconnected often or never...


In my experience, there are lots of automotive (and motorcycle) connectors and they are usually sold outside of Digikey or Mouser.

I tend to start with a simple Google search (for example, "Suzuki 1981 GS550 igniter plug") and work through the listings, looking for manufacturer names, clues, etc. Searching by number and gender of pins works too ("Suzuki 6 pin female connector", for example). Look closely at photos to make sure you're on the right track. Sometimes you'll find a connector in the same family with a different color or number of pins.

Once you find a manufacturer, you can go to their website and search by pin count, rows, color, gender.

There are also online stores that supply hard to find (or hard to purchase in Qty <1,000) connectors in kits, specifically for hobbyists. One of my favorites is Corsa Technic. They also usually carry crimp tools for the connectors they carry.

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    \$\begingroup\$ +1 for mention of Corsa Technic. Many thanks! \$\endgroup\$ – Dwayne Reid Jul 21 '18 at 0:17

No...but...2 websites that are useful as far as identifying connectors

please be aware...

  • the html could easily blind you and/or make your eyes bleed
  • automotive connectors are often inferior motorcycle connectors
  • Japanese Japanese Japanese motorcycle connectors are the best
  • IDENtifying the connector is just step one. USUALLY replacing with same connector is the best thing-UNLESS that connector has proven over time TO SUCK!!!

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