I stink at terminating coax - AVS Forum
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Old 08-02-2007, 01:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Total rookie.

Please help. I have a compression tool that I picked up at HD/Lowes (Ideal?); some little coax stripper thing (cheap) and a bunch of compression fittings (Ideal also I think is that the right term?). Seems like 3/4 times I strip the wire, use the tool and afterwards the fitting just falls off the wire. The wire is ordinary coax (RG6?), not quad shield (not that I know the difference, but I read the side of the wire, and it didn't say quad. I am trying to terminate wires that are in the wall, then connect to levitron quickport wallplates.

Are their tight tolerances in terms of how much of the coax to strip? Should clamping the compression tool be more violent? Do my tools suck? Do the brand of fittings suck?
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Old 08-02-2007, 03:22 PM
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It makes a difference if wire is quad shield or not. Connectors are generally made for one type of wire or another. The QS stuff is a little bigger to account for the size for the shielding... Make sure your connectors and your wire match and you are in business.

Chris
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Old 08-02-2007, 03:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Okay Chris - I'll run that to ground. All the tutorials I have googled make it look pretty easy, yet my results kept screwing up.

Thanks!
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Old 08-03-2007, 06:31 AM
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Can you take a pic of what your coax looks like after you strip it, before you put a connector on?
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Old 08-03-2007, 07:09 AM - Thread Starter
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Yes I'll take some pics this weekend. I checked and the connector and the cable are both RG-6, not quad. I got some rack stuff in via UPS last night, so I spent all my time rearranging my rack and ran out of time before I could try again on coax.

Thanks for the input guys. I realize this is a rather mundane topic compared to most of the good work being done here.
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Old 08-03-2007, 07:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dc_pilgrim View Post

Total rookie.

Please help. I have a compression tool that I picked up at HD/Lowes (Ideal?); some little coax stripper thing (cheap) and a bunch of compression fittings (Ideal also I think is that the right term?). Seems like 3/4 times I strip the wire, use the tool and afterwards the fitting just falls off the wire. The wire is ordinary coax (RG6?), not quad shield (not that I know the difference, but I read the side of the wire, and it didn't say quad. I am trying to terminate wires that are in the wall, then connect to levitron quickport wallplates.

Are their tight tolerances in terms of how much of the coax to strip? Should clamping the compression tool be more violent? Do my tools suck? Do the brand of fittings suck?

A couple of pointers:

1. Make sure you have the right connector for the coax. Match Quad (4 shields) connectors with Quad coax. Match dual (2 shields) connectors with dual coax.

2. Make sure to prep the coax properly. roughly 1/4" to 3/8" of center conductor should stick out out of the white dielectric. 1/4" of foil on the dielectric should be exposed. All braid should be pulled back over the jacket so that all you see is the foil for roughly 1/4".

3. Make sure to seat the connector properly. The end of the white dielectric should be flush with the inside of the connector where the threading stops. If you look at the end of the connector, you should see a hole in the middle that is smaller than the threaded part of the connector. This is probably 1/4" from the very end of the connector.

4. Before you compress the connector, make sure you do not see any loose braid strands near the center conductor. If the connector is seated properly and you are looking at the end, you should see the silver from the connector on the outside, white dielectric in the middle, and the center conductor on the center.

5. Compress all the way. Make sure you are using a tool that is matched with your connector. Most compression tools are inter-changeable (in my experience), but some are not.

6. If you've done all this and you are still easily able to pull the connector off the coax, you may want to look for a different brand of connector.

Hope this helps,

Carl

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Old 08-03-2007, 08:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Carl - thanks for the detailed pointers. I'll report back on Monday.
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Old 08-05-2007, 08:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

A couple of pointers:

1. Make sure you have the right connector for the coax. Match Quad (4 shields) connectors with Quad coax. Match dual (2 shields) connectors with dual coax.

Check

and check


Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

2. Make sure to prep the coax properly. roughly 1/4" to 3/8" of center conductor should stick out out of the white dielectric. 1/4" of foil on the dielectric should be exposed. All braid should be pulled back over the jacket so that all you see is the foil for roughly 1/4".

3/8" for the conductor, 1/4" for the foil (approx)


Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

3. Make sure to seat the connector properly. The end of the white dielectric should be flush with the inside of the connector where the threading stops. If you look at the end of the connector, you should see a hole in the middle that is smaller than the threaded part of the connector. This is probably 1/4" from the very end of the connector.

Set in place


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Originally Posted by fedders View Post

4. Before you compress the connector, make sure you do not see any loose braid strands near the center conductor. If the connector is seated properly and you are looking at the end, you should see the silver from the connector on the outside, white dielectric in the middle, and the center conductor on the center.



Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

5. Compress all the way. Make sure you are using a tool that is matched with your connector. Most compression tools are inter-changeable (in my experience), but some are not.

Rock and Roll


Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

6. If you've done all this and you are still easily able to pull the connector off the coax, you may want to look for a different brand of connector.

Hope this helps,

Carl

Doesn't separate!

And the tv is working on my wire (the flash made a wierd pattern on the left of the screen, not seen in real life)


Thanks all - extremely helpful!
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Old 08-05-2007, 09:24 PM
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First of all, great pictures - thanks for illustrating this for everyone.

A few quick notes: Looks like you did not pull the braid wires back over the jacket. This is a common mistake, but can make putting the connector on much more difficult as the braid gets bunched up under the jacket. Also, I can tell the coax is probably only 30-40% braid, maybe less. Good dual-shield coax has ~60% braid. Using the e-number, I can tell the coax is made by SHAOXING SHENGYANG ELECTRICAL APPLIANCE CO LTD (likely from China). Because there is not enough braid under the jacket, this may be another reason you are not getting the pull-off force that you should expect. Our experience has been that the dielectric may be undersized as well.

But, I'm very glad to hear that your TV is now working well!

Carl

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Old 08-06-2007, 02:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

First of all, great pictures - thanks for illustrating this for everyone.

A few quick notes: Looks like you did not pull the braid wires back over the jacket. This is a common mistake, but can make putting the connector on much more difficult as the braid gets bunched up under the jacket.

Busted - I did forget that on the one I did while taking pictures.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

Also, I can tell the coax is probably only 30-40% braid, maybe less. Good dual-shield coax has ~60% braid. Using the e-number, I can tell the coax is made by SHAOXING SHENGYANG ELECTRICAL APPLIANCE CO LTD (likely from China). Because there is not enough braid under the jacket, this may be another reason you are not getting the pull-off force that you should expect. Our experience has been that the dielectric may be undersized as well.

But, I'm very glad to hear that your TV is now working well!

Carl

I am SHOCKED, SHOCKED that my electrician cut corners by using inferior materials. Oh well, you can't think of everything. I am glad I ran my own speaker wires and display wires. I am awfully impressed that you can tell all that from my pics. Worth a thousand words and all that.

Thanks again. You have no idea how annoying it was to have the stupid connectors fall off 80% of the time.
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Old 04-14-2008, 11:43 AM
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You have no idea how annoying........

Wanna bet
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Old 04-14-2008, 11:49 AM
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Wow. Where did this thread come from? So old that I forgot I had made comments....

Always good when you agree with your own advice.

Carl

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Old 04-16-2008, 04:47 PM
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THis Thread is VERY Helpful.. Saved me from having to post another Q as I am in the process of doing the same thing right now.. The pics are superbly helpful as well as the pointers..
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Old 04-16-2008, 06:15 PM
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Here is some good info with pics: Linky As well as this: Another Linky
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Old 04-17-2008, 04:19 PM
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Just another bumpity bump 'cause this is such a good thread.

I'd terminated CAT for years, but had similar issues a couple of years ago when I started terminating coax for the first time.

This would have saved me a few hours of time and a few dollars in connectors...

the sticky is about my crappy blues pickin'...
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Old 06-27-2008, 12:29 PM
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I am having difficulty prepping my quad RG6. I have quad compression fittings. After reading this thread and following the links I think I know what the cable should look like. Just to make sure, for quad RG6, I should strip and fold back the metal braid, but keep the metal foil layer on the cable...in other words not try to remove that inner foil layer exposing the white plastic.

The problem that I am having is my coax stripper doesn't seem to strip off enough of the outside casing and metal braid layers. Do I need to get a higher quality RG6 stripper? See link for the tool I am using.

http://alpha.octopart.com/Paladin_Tools__1257.pdf

I have found that after I do the initial cut/strip I have to cut off another 1/8 or 1/4 inch of the outside layer and braid layers in order to get the cable to to all the way up to the end of the compression connector after compressing it.

thanks,
Murray
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Old 06-28-2008, 08:35 PM
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Your stripper is fine. (be careful saying that in front of your wife...)

The key is that the cable has to be pushed far enough up into the connector. If it isn't, when you compress the connector, it won't be able to grab the cable and will easily pull off. In the fifth picture from the top in this Link you can see the white insulating center of the coax pushed all the way into the connector so that it is even with the inside bottom of the connector. Other than that there are just a few rules:
  • Bend the copper/aluminum braiding back, but leave the foil around the white center insulator. I've seen some how-to's that say remove the foil here as well, but I never do.
  • Make sure that a stray braiding wire doesn't some how come out the center of the connector along with the white insulator and short with the copper center conductor.
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Old 06-30-2008, 10:38 AM
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Anyone here stripped and connected Mini Coax before? I just need a guide on the length everything should be in regards to center conductor, braid, etc...

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Old 06-30-2008, 11:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curtis104 View Post

Anyone here stripped and connected Mini Coax before? I just need a guide on the length everything should be in regards to center conductor, braid, etc...

Get a stripper designed for mini coax. I know Paladin makes one (model 1258) that can be adjusted for just about any type of mini coax out there.

Otherwise, the spacing is the same as other coax with 1/4" spacing...

Carl

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