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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
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A 355nation How To presented by
atxjax

Project Name
Replace stock battery terminals with MilSpec heavy duty terminals

Project Description
I had to replace my battery and I noticed that the stock terminals stayed fairly loose on the battery even when I cranked down on the nuts that are supposed to tighten them down. That was a no go for me. So I decided to upgrade.

Now there are a lot of other terminals out there that can be had on Ebay and other places that have screw lugs that hold the cables in by clamping them down. Didn't like the way they look because they are totally ricer looking. I wanted to maintain a stock look but have something heavy duty. I looked into marine terminals but didn't like the upwards going post and they won't work as they would most likely arc out against the hood.

I came across these milspec terminals that are used by the military on everything from humvees to the duce and halfs and other vehicles. They are very stout and you can add or group together as many wires / cables as you want to one terminal while still maintaining a clean / stock appearance.

Got them on Ebay for roughly $35 shipped. They are available on McMaster Carr for cheaper but I don't have an account and they didn't sell the covers.


Skill Level
Moderate

Project Vehicle
Make: Chevrolet
Model: Colorado
Year: 2004
Engine: 3.5L


Tools Needed
  • Dremel type tool with cutoff wheel
  • Standard socket set that includes both metric and standard sizes will get you by.
  • Vice Grip Pliers
  • Propane Torch
  • Another person to help would be great.

Materials needed
  • Solder (Rosin Core is best)
  • Flux (if you dont get Rosin Core solder)
  • MilSpec Battery Terminal set
  • MilSpec Battery Terminal Covers
  • 2 each 1/0 Tinned Battery Terminal Lugs with 3/8" eyelet.
Project Time
1 hour

Project Cost
~$35

OK, lets begin.

  1. Disconnect both battery terminals and remove battery box top cover, remove battery and remove battery box bottom cover.

    Battery needs to be removed as a safety precaution because in the next steps we will be using a propane torch and the battery fumes if any are present can ignite.
  2. Using the dremel tool with cutoff wheel cut along the edges marked in yellow of the stock terminals just deep enough to get the stock cables out. I wanted to save that little bit of length on the ends. Do this for both the positive and negative sides.


  3. If the exposed cable strands are corroded / dirty scrape them clean or use your favorite method to clean them, like soda, baking soda and water, or my favorite muratic acid ( just be sure to neutralize the acid with water afterwards ). The ends just have to be clean and almost shiny copper looking. Do this on both sides and make sure they are dry after cleaning.

  4. Using a Vice Grip hold on to one of the 1/0 lugs and begin to heat the lug using your propane torch. This is where the other person comes in or you will have to get creative like I did and find a place to mount the vice grip to the truck to hold it rock steady. I don't have a video on how I soldered it but view the following you tube video to teach you how to solder the end on. Watch from the 2.00 minute mark.
    Do that for both sides.

  5. Put battery box bottom cover back in, put battery back in truck, put the top cover back on the battery.

  6. Attach both the positive and negative Milspec terminals to the battery posts. Tighten them down firmly on the posts but don't go batcrap insane on them because the posts will break at the battery before these terminals do.

  7. Slide the covers over the positive and negative cable set first then attach the 3/8ths 1/0 lugs to the 3/8ths bolts on the terminals. The beauty of these terminals is that now you have more room to attach cables / wires. You can tighten the lugs to the terminals as much as you want.


  8. Slide covers over the terminals once they are all tightened up and your done.


    You can add heat shrink between the lugs and the cables but it was an added expense I didn't want to spend more money on. Add whatever other cables you need for your sound system / alarm or whatever through the opening of the covers and put them on the bolt where the lugs are. This is now a nice solid connection and will give you years of hassle free service.

Hope you enjoy.....
ATXJAX
 

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Member's Technical crew
Joined
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12,060 Posts
Agreed, very good mod. Something to do when you do the big 3 grounding upgrade if you ask me!
 

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Dont let the Nation die
2005 GMC Canyon z71 SLE 4x4 3.5L
Joined
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15,948 Posts
i been looking at walmart, advance and autozone. where do you get these?
OP said he got them off ebay, and there were NAPA part numbers listed aswell...


Great mod, tho!! Should see if i can find a few of those at work... :lol:
 

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Premium Member
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10,390 Posts

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Dont let the Nation die
2005 GMC Canyon z71 SLE 4x4 3.5L
Joined
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15,948 Posts
i picked up a set like this, grabbed them out of the spares at work... :)


gonna try to solder these in and see how that goes.
 

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Dont let the Nation die
2005 GMC Canyon z71 SLE 4x4 3.5L
Joined
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15,948 Posts
Longer bolt? How come?
(and thats a google pic. I'll get a pic of mine when i get home)
 

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Dont let the Nation die
2005 GMC Canyon z71 SLE 4x4 3.5L
Joined
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15,948 Posts
these are the ones i picked up
 
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