Common Contact System
We use Deutsch’s “Common Contact System” for good not evil.
Connector Terminal Standardization
Deutsch has standardized much of their robust connector system around a common terminal shape. Then they allow the customer to mix and match things like terminal plating (gold or nickel), crimp style (stamped or solid), wire insulation thickness (standard or reduced diameter seals), strain relief (shrink boot adapter) etc. This allows large scale manufacturers to tailor the connectors for everything from critical 24 gauge signal wires to high current large gauge connections.
Robust Harness Build
At Electron Speed, we take this concept one step further. The Deutsch “Common Contact System” was based on a robust military terminal. We can create a military specification wire connection in a readily available housing! Where available, all of the Deutsch DT, DTM and DTP connectors we use come specified for motorsports use: mil-spec terminals, reduced diameter seals (where available) and shrink boot adapters. This allows for higher current ratings, sealing despite thinner insulation and enhanced robustness to vibration.
Easy Trackside Repair
The benefits continue after installation of an Electron Speed harness or connector. Only one kind of terminal and one set of tools need to be carried to service the Deutsch plastic connectors and the aluminum Mil-Spec connectors. When spare parts aren’t available, using a “Common Contact” increases the odds that a competitor can come to your aid.
Deutsch Connector Caution
The biggest downside of choosing a connector that’s part of the common contact system is that caution must be taken when ordering DT, DTM, and DTP connectors. Many vendors use the general purpose configurations to reduce their cost while selling a connector that outwardly looks the same. These parts are good enough for the agricultural applications that Deutsch is targeting. However, care should be taken when using these parts as hard as we do in motorsports. For example, the stamped terminal available for this connector has 66% more voltage drop than the solid terminals we specify. This is more heat in the connector and less signal getting through!
To learn more about the system and how the quality of the terminals effect the specifications of the connector, click here for Deutsch’s technical document.