I have a project that requires a connector that is no longer manufactured which would interface with an old device. For prototyping, I have been salvaging this connector from old peripherals that used it, but I need a way to get these connectors in bulk that doesn't rely on using other devices for parts. Specifically, I need the THT (through-hole) version of this connector.

Is there a way to either make the connector myself or to get them manufactured? The connector plug is like any other USB, HDMI, DVI, or similar THT plug, it is just of a completely custom design.

  • \$\begingroup\$ If you need less than a few thousand (maybe even tens of thousands) of these then there is no point to get them manufactured unless you are willing to pay thousand (and maybe thousands?) of dollars for a handful. You would need a well equipped machine shop that can also plate stuff. Replacing the connector on the old device itself is not an option? Or using one of your salvaged connectors to make a permanent adapter? \$\endgroup\$
    – DKNguyen
    Jan 24 '20 at 20:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ I do only need a couple thousand of them. It would be a fairly small production run. It seems that I need too many to just salvage them and too few to get them manufactured. Perhaps I can find a smaller, local machine shop that would be more likely to help as I doubt it would make sense for me to buy the equipment just for this project. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kyle
    Jan 24 '20 at 20:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ Well, I meant a machine shop for like a handful since they would basically be making them one-by-one and charging you a lot for each one, but still less than the set up costs for a mass production run. But if you need a couple thousand an actual connector manufacturer might take you up on it, and charge a premium. Maybe ask Molex, Tyco, Hirose, Samtec, or someone. \$\endgroup\$
    – DKNguyen
    Jan 24 '20 at 20:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ I see. Are you aware of any connector manufacturers that might do something like this? I haven't been able to find a custom connector manufacturer that makes the style of plug I need. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kyle
    Jan 24 '20 at 20:29
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ And what is "THT Plug"? While board-mounted plugs do exist, is much more common to see THT Jacks or In-Line Plugs. You cannot expect meaningful advice without at least a picture of the connector. Unless, of course, your question is about custom connectors in general, in which case the answer is "sure, for half a mil you can get anything" \$\endgroup\$
    – Maple
    Jan 24 '20 at 20:57

Certain manufacturers offer small runs and custom connector services. Check Samtec, but be ready for tooling and MoQ charges.

  • \$\begingroup\$ From Samtec's custom products page, it looks like they could potentially manufacture what I am looking for. Do you know what they or similar manufacturers tend to charge? \$\endgroup\$
    – Kyle
    Jan 24 '20 at 20:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kyle I just know that if for a machine shop to get a die or mold made to expect it to be at least $10k. \$\endgroup\$
    – DKNguyen
    Jan 24 '20 at 21:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ And there's likely to be several tools involved here. A die for the upper housing, for the lower housing. A mold for the plastic spacer. Tooling for pins if they need to be bent. ... \$\endgroup\$
    – The Photon
    Jan 24 '20 at 22:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ From my last project with them (~10 years ago), if the connector is based on some other connector, it gets cheaper. If the pin forms are standard, it gets cheaper. If the pitch is not too tight, it gets cheaper. The project I did was around 20K USD, including an MoQ of 4K. \$\endgroup\$
    – Lior Bilia
    Jan 25 '20 at 11:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ @The Photon This particular connector makes use of everything you mentioned, so it would definitely require a more expensive tooling setup. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kyle
    Jan 25 '20 at 18:14

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