For this project, we will need several things. If you have a damaged Cat5 Ethernet network cable, you can simply cut the wire at about 1.5 inches past one of the connectors. You will need an additional three-inch length of a single piece wire to create the arms. If you don't mind having fewer than eight legs, you could cut a slightly longer piece of wire and rip one of the wires out the connector. Spare wire could also be used for the arms. However, if you plan on making a few RJ-45 monsters, cutting an additional 3 inches of wire will give you eight spare "arms."Parts:
If you're starting from scratch, you might need a crimping tool. These are generally expensive and I wouldn't recommend buying one strictly for this purpose. If you want to make your own network cable then a crimper is something worth owning. Some crimp tools have the added benefit of also being able to crimp RJ-11 (phone) connectors. Keep that in mind if you go out to buy one. You will need some cable as well. If your wire is solid core and not stranded, this will result in a very stable monster. My monster used some very old network cable that was left over which simply wasn't good for anything. A quick note on wire: stranded wire can work but the wire will be more flexible and might not hold a pose quite as well as the solid variety. Crimp a connector onto your wire and then cut the wire about 1.5 inches away from the connector. Cut another piece of cable that is about three inches long and remove one of the wires to use for the arms.
All that needs to be done at this point is to strip off about 2/3 of the outer jacketing from the wire with the connector on the end. We will now have an RJ-45 connector with, hopefully, half an inch of jacketing with eight wires sticking out of it. If your wire was twisted, simply straighten it out. Make a small notch in the jacketing close to the RJ-45 connector, in parallel with it. Take the three-inch single wire and tie it in a knot around the jacketing so that the wire sits in the notch and will not slide up or down. Using a utility knife, carefully slice the insulation along the length of the ends of the "arms" and "legs" for about a quarter of an inch. Gently pull the insulation back from the wire to create the claws. If you are using stranded wire, you might want to use individual strands of wire as "fingers." Pose the wires that are sticking out of the body and decorate the "head" as you see fit.My RJ-45 Monster:
If you're very handy with a paint brush, you could paint eyes and little fangs as well. Googly eyes are an added frill that you might also enjoy... be creative and have fun!
RJ-45 Monster merchandise available in the AntiPoetics Online Store.