Coax and grounding antenna mast Ques. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 02:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Can you use RG-6 18 AWG copper clad steel coax wire as a ground wire for an antenna mast? The only difference I can see is that it would be coated instead of bare wire. I've never seen this done, so if I do it I want to make sure it is doing it's job properly. Of course I would expose plenty of the copper on the ends even more so than needed for TV connection.
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post #2 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 02:58 PM
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Not for a proper (safe) ground. 8 AWG solid copper to an earth ground is recommended.
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post #3 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 03:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks Ratman. Even radioshack only sells 17 AWG, so I guess lowes would have what I need...

The site below says 17 AWG C.C.Steel, and 8 AWG aluminum... that's why I was asking about the coax 18 AWG.

http://www.mikeholt.com/mojonewsarch...s~20020303.htm
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post #4 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 04:02 PM
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You could double up on the CC RG-6 18-gauge. It is really not for grounding but for bonding together for potential difference's. The only real grounding is on your Electrical side.

All Comments made are my own and not of my employer.
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post #5 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 04:04 PM
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17 AWG Copper-Coated Steel meets NEC 2008 requirements. See Article 810.21(H).

Bare vs coated doesn't matter for the mast ground. Either is permitted under NEC 810.21(B).
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post #6 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ybsane View Post

You could double up on the CC RG-6 18-gauge. It is really not for grounding but for bonding together for potential difference's. The only real grounding is on your Electrical side.

This sounds like the best way to me. I can buy 100 ft of RG-6 and use two lines of this for ground, and of course the third line goes to the TV but first to a grounding block. It will look neater too I think. I am installing it for a friend, so I want it to look good.
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post #7 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 05:11 PM
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If you're going for looks, have at it. But, why run three cables when two will suffice.
If you want to do it properly and for safety... better to go with grounding both the coax feed and a mast ground with the proper gauge wire. You can get 8 AWG solid copper at Lowes or Home Depot.

If you are doing this for "a friend", better draw up a release form to cover your butt in the event of a problem. Just sayin' ....
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post #8 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 05:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Maybe I'll go into the attic instead! Lightning is very bad around here, and grounding is not necessary there.
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post #9 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 06:08 PM
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Unless "the code" has been changed in its latest revidion, the mast must be grounded with 8 gauge aluminum, 10 gauge copper or 17 gauge copper clad steel. It can be insulated or bare and straned or solid, and it must be grounded to the ground electrode system.

I have never heard of anyone "satisfying" the mast grounding requirement by grounding with two 18 gauge copper clad steel groundwires. Doing so does not meet the code's explicit mandate. I don't know the coax's center conductor steel to be the same grade of steel as that used in the 17 gauge wire. I can cut the 18 gauge center conductors with paper cutting shears but I don't think I can cut the 17 gauge "messengered" grounding wire with them.

The term "coated" should not be confused with "insluated".
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post #10 of 11 Old 02-25-2012, 08:35 PM
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My antenna comes into the garage where it connects to a powered signal booster. There is a ground wire (green) connector that I have connected the ground wire to what was the cable connection coming into the house (which we canceled 25 years ago). I'm assuming that however the cable company grounded their cable and the wire they used is sufficient for my antenna. My guess is that if our antenna ever gets hit by lightening we'll be fine but the neighbors cable will go out
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post #11 of 11 Old 02-26-2012, 06:15 AM - Thread Starter
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I have my own antenna and dish grounded with 8 AWG aluminum that I bought at Lowes 15 yrs or so ago. I have not seen that they carry this anymore however, unless it is in the wire section now instead of the antenna section. I was hit by lightning once indirectly as the lightning hit a tree and killed it in the backyard. The lightning melted the aluminum ground wire right at the grounding block because when I looked at it, it was broke into. The lightning also fried the Directv LNB and receiver, BUT did not hurt the OTA antenna or TV, and the antenna was 25 ft higher up than the dish... Can't figure that out, unless it's because I grounded the antenna correctly? The RG-6 coax from dish LNB to receiver was burnt black at the conductor.
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