How To Care For Your Sync Cord Plug [VIDEO]

How To Care For Your Sync Cord Plug [VIDEO]

By Steve Johnson

The Ikelite waterproof sync cord plug and bulkhead connection is one of the most reliable electrical connections underwater today (and for the past 40+ years). Spend three minutes to learn how to properly attach and maintain your electrical sync cords for a lifetime of reliable strobe triggering.



Don’t remove the o-ring to lubricate it. Check the surface of the o-ring for dirt or hair before you lubricate it. Only lubricate the visible surface of the o-ring and along the inside of the threaded retaining ring. Don’t get lubricant inside of the bulkhead or plug contacts.

When you apply lubricant, always use your finger and not a cotton swab or Q-tip. Use only the smallest amount of lubricant on your finger - enough to make the surface shiny without any clumps or globs of lube. Lubricant reduces friction, it does not enhance the seal.


Attaching the Plug

When you attach the plug, line up the contacts before you press the plug into the bulkhead. Press the plug in enough to feel the o-ring seat into the bulkhead before you start tightening the retaining ring. If you can’t feel it, try pulling the strain relief back to get the retaining ring further out of the way. Once the o-ring is seated, tighten the retaining ring all the way down until it runs out of threads.


Dissimilar Metals

You need to show a little extra caution when mixing older and newer plug connectors. Older connectors are nickel plated brass which look silver in color. Newer connectors are anodized aluminum which has the same corrosion resistance at a fraction of the weight. Aluminum connectors are black, or red as in the case of our DS Link TTL Converters.

When you mix brass and aluminum connectors, you need to thoroughly clean and separate the connectors after EACH DAY of diving. Apply a light coating of lubricant to the threads of the bulkhead and the plug retaining ring. This will help to prevent the dissimilar metals from seizing together. If your connectors seize together, it will be necessary to replace both components.

We do offer updates from brass to aluminum bulkheads for our housings and strobes, email us to get yours update today. 



That’s all there is to it. With just a little bit of care your electrical sync cords can provide at least as many years of use as any fiber optic cord. If you have any questions, just send us an email. Happy shooting!


Steve Johnson profile image for ikelite underwater systems

Steve Johnson has been a team member with Ikelite for 28 years. In that time he's worked within almost every aspect of the company but has mainly focused on the service department. Outside of work you can catch Steve scuba diving, snorkeling, spending time with family and his chocolate lab rescue Maplesugar.  




Additional Reading

How to Lubricate Your ULTRAcompact Housing O-Ring [VIDEO]

DS51 Battery Compartment // The 3 Things You Need to Know [VIDEO]

Bent Reflector Replacement for DS160, DS161, DS125 Strobes [VIDEO]

Replacing Push Button O-Rings on an Ikelite Underwater Housing [VIDEO]

Using a Trim Weight System for Balance and Stability Underwater

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