Beginner question. I have my circuit working, now I want to wrap up the pi and its cables in a clean fashion.

For the external 5V charger I am using for the LED screen I can branch out, cut the pi usb cable and pair the red (+) and black.

How do I solder the GPIO pins to the gray ribbon?

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On a video I saw that:

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Can someone point me to what I need to that? A GPIO Ribbon cable and some kind of board? How do you call that?

  • The brown board is known as perfboard. It's a non-conductive sheet with a grid of 0.1" spaced holes. On one side of the board every hole has a small copper connector pad around it to solder to. It's cheap, less easy than a breadboard, more permanent than a breadboard.
    – goobering
    Jun 17, 2016 at 0:46

1 Answer 1


I would not solder to the GPIO pins. You can find what we call a header, which is the black plastic thing at the end of your ribbon cable and what seems to be used on the underside of that tiny board in your last picture.

Find one that has the correct number of pins to match what you are needing to do, one side female to snap onto the GPIO pins, the other side male so you can solder directly to it, or solder it to a generic circuit board like in your last picture. You can get a header for your ribbon cable as well, so you can disconnect both the cable and the Pi should you need to.

Here's an example. Any electronics supply shop should have these, local or online.

  • In addition to this excellent answer, one can buy "dupont pins" (male and female) (search that phrase on eBay). Combine those with a crimping tool and some wire, you can create your own "pluggable" individual wires. If that is too much, a ribbon cable (male to female) would be a better alternative and mate the female sockets to the Pi and the male pins to the holes in the adapter cable to which you wish to connect.
    – Kolban
    Jun 17, 2016 at 0:47

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