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I've manage to build myself an RFID music player which I'm pretty chuffed with. It's definitely a bit home made but it woks and I'm proud of it. I don't know what plug type to buy to sort my problem below:

As you can see from the second photo, my wiring is a big mess. I've wired up all the components on the lid (the RFID reader, three buttons, and a speaker) with 21 single plug wire connections. As you can clearly see from the photo, it's a dogs breakfast of wires. Worse, the wiring is fragile and connections can break when I open and close the box.

The fix, I think, is fairly simple: to wire up a multi-wire plug connection between the lid and the box. That is have all the wires from the lid feed into one side of a plug, and all the wires on the bottom feed into the other side of the plug. That way, I can bundle all the wires up and attach them neatly out of the way, with the only moving part being the large multi-wire plugs.

I would really like one plug (male and female) with at least 21 pins, or few smaller pinned plugs to clean everything up. I don't know what to search for - when I google search for plugs, wiring harness, connections, etc, I get a variety of plugs and wires that just don't seem quite what I'm looking for.

Ideally, I'd like to be able to set up the plug by just screwing in each of the bare tinned wire ends. That way, alls I have to do is cut each single wire plug off, strip back the wire, tin it, then screw it into the plug in the right spot. Do that 21 times for each side and hey presto: 2 neat plugs.

Can someone please let me know what plug type I need? Or any other helpful suggestions?

RFID Music Player

Terrible wiring!

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  • The reason there is unshrunk heat shrink wrap on the wires is that I thought shrink wrap would make the single wire plug connections a bit more permanent. I only actually shrunk the two loose connections, and decided against shrinking the rest lest it prevent me removing the connections should I need to. Apr 27, 2023 at 22:52
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    please do not add explanations into a comment ... use the edit button and add it to your question ... anyway, your question is not about arduino
    – jsotola
    Apr 28, 2023 at 0:46
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    I would also suggest just using pin headers and female dupont connectors. You can get them with like 2 rows of multiple contacts (as you need it). Thats the easiest for the typical 0.1" pitch and they are durable enough to hold for the limited number of times, that you need to disconnect them.
    – chrisl
    Apr 28, 2023 at 9:21
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    gentleman, sorry, I reopen the question. I think it is on topic here. It is too basic for EE SE. simple circuits and wiring a project around Arduino is 'Arduinoing'
    – Juraj
    Apr 28, 2023 at 11:45

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You could have use say 4 long stand-off spacers and mounted the circuit board on the underside of the lid (as you have done with the RFID reader), possibly inverting it for easier access to the arduino usb socket and SD card, so the lid could be removed without stressing the wiring. If you had used a printed circuit board then edge connectors would have been a possibility. I suppose you could use 0.1" header pins on the circuit board and use DuPont or similar connectors.

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