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I'm building a circuit by screwing multiple breakout boards into a wooden panel and using jumper wires to connect header pins between different boards. Most of the time this works fine, but sometimes I need to connect a pin to more than one other pin. This can easily happen with i2c, power, or ground.

On a breadboard this would be easy, but I don't have room for one, or at least not full-sized. I could also use solder to bridge some header pins together and make a sort of bus connector, but I don't see a nice way to mount it to keep it moving around. Or maybe I could solder multiple wires together, but that seems likely to result in a tangle.

It seems like this is something people would commonly want to do and there should be a more elegant way, but I don't know the search terms to look it up. What am I missing?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Possibly useful search terms: "tie point block", "contact point block", "distribution strip". \$\endgroup\$ Feb 19, 2020 at 21:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ A "solderless t-tap connector" might be useful. \$\endgroup\$ Feb 19, 2020 at 23:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ Maybe a "wire nut"? \$\endgroup\$ Feb 19, 2020 at 23:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Wire nuts are pretty big compared to the wires you are probably using. Might as well just twist the wires together with some pliers and cover in tape or heatshrink. \$\endgroup\$
    – DKNguyen
    Feb 20, 2020 at 0:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Brian How sturdy will the resulting kludge need to be? \$\endgroup\$ Feb 20, 2020 at 0:49

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Add in even more breakout boards to serve as connective splitting junctions.

If you are using female crimp housings at the ends of your wire then solder rows of headers onto little protoboards with a strip pattern. The strip patterns are probably longer than you need so use a knife to cut them up into smaller segments.

enter image description here Busboard

If using male headers or solid-stranded hookup wire, then you can just buy small miniature solderless breadboards. enter image description here Solarbotics

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  • \$\begingroup\$ They both seem too big, but I found another that's smaller: adafruit.com/product/2463 \$\endgroup\$ Feb 19, 2020 at 20:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ @BrianSlesinsky Wow. That's pretty small. You can also just buy copper plated PCB (or even just copper plate), chop it up, and solder surface mount header pins onto it. You will need a big iron though. \$\endgroup\$
    – DKNguyen
    Feb 19, 2020 at 20:57
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What I've done in the past is to take multiple jumpers, cut the ends off, strip and solder them together. Add some heatshrink. Basically a jumper-wire version of a standard electrician's connection (they would use wire-nuts). (e.g., https://www.do-it-yourself-help.com/how-to-splice-electrical-wires.html)

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You could use a piece of solid wire as a bus bar and use electrical tape to insulate it after you soldered the taps on it. Just slit the tape at the tap locations and wrap it along the length of the bus bar. I would use a 16 or 14 ga wire if you have any house wire laying around.

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