From time to time I need a way to hook up a guitar speaker to an amplifier for testing. This really is a simple cord with a 1/4″ jack on one end, and female disconnect connectors on the other, however a simple thing when you need it and don’t have it can be annoying.
For the wire I used some old 16 gauge lamp cord that I had laying around. I believe this is an extra length of cord that I trimmed off of the light fixture in the dining room when I installed it. Either way if you are into this sort of D.I.Y. then saving power cords from any appliance, lamp, or anything else becomes a way of life.
Now the price of the lamp cord…Free was right but it actually isn’t a bad option to use. While it might seem obvious to just use some actual speaker wire for something like this unless you spurge for the good stuff, cheap speaker cable is what is called Copper-Clad Aluminum. This means that the wire is actual aluminum with a thin coating of copper on the outside. Since the lamp cord is designed for higher voltage and current ratings it is genuine copper through and through and thus the better option.
You can test this by scraping the bare wire with a knife, if the coating comes off revealing a silver wire then it is copper-clad instead of genuine copper.
Next it was just a matter of attaching some disconnects to the one side to attach to the speaker. I picked up a kit of connectors from harbor freight for around $6 (USD). You can also find these connectors on Amazon if you would prefer that:
Then you just crimp these to the wire with some pliers. Now if you are going to connect this to a amplifier with push terminal connectors then the other end of the wire can stay as bare striped ends. I however want to use this primarily with guitar amps, so on the other end I soldered on a 1/4″ plug.
If you want to see more about the wire then check out the video here: