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Advice for making my own coax cables?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Tools, tips or comments on making my own coax cables?

I'm wanting to learn how to make them and wanted to make the best available.

I'd also like some suggestion as to what kind of cable I should use for the "main" coax coming into the house and going to the structured panel. Should I run 3 coax cables from outside to the inside structured panel...for future proof? I'm not sure what I might need 3 coax's for but maybe if one gets cut or goes bad I have 2 others? Ideas?

Thanks!
post #2 of 13
Your CATV company will determine what is best from the pole or pedestal to your home. As for inside the home, RG-6 will work fine, unless you are near a Hamshack or Am/Fm transmitter, then you may need to go with RG-6QS, which is harder to terminate the ends properly.

You also really need only one coax to the house, unless you are going to be doing Satellite, then you may need two. What really are you going to do once you do the coax? Are you also running Networking, whole house audio, video cameras, etc.? If you are, figure min. two Cat-5e or Cat-6 to each jack location that has a coax running to it. There is more to it, then just throwing stuff together, due to you really need a plan in what you need for connections for each room, and how you are going to do it.
post #3 of 13
Normally, RG-11 is run from the street or pole to your demarc location. And is supplied form the cable company, as well as it's terminations.
Satellite rund RG-6(Q) from the dish to the distribution panel or demarc depending on installation. I like to run a couple of RG-6Q lines to a likey dish location while I can.

You can run 2 coax runs and a couple cat5e runs from the demarc location to the structured wiring panel. These 4 lines will cover most anything that comes your way.

I always run RG-6Q cable and have come to terminate them quite easily, although they tend to turn the ends of your fingers raw if you are doing a lot of ends.

I use Cable Prep 6590 combo kit for stripping and compression to do my ends.
http://www.specialized.net/Specializ...pper-5845.aspx

You will also need to get the appropriate ends for whichever cable you use, quad or not.
post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks, is there a certain wire cutter that is recommended? I have seen some that do both cuts at the same time and other tools that you cut the end and then go back and cut the jacket down to the foil.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post

Your CATV company will determine what is best from the pole or pedestal to your home. As for inside the home, RG-6 will work fine, unless you are near a Hamshack or Am/Fm transmitter, then you may need to go with RG-6QS, which is harder to terminate the ends properly.

You also really need only one coax to the house, unless you are going to be doing Satellite, then you may need two. What really are you going to do once you do the coax? Are you also running Networking, whole house audio, video cameras, etc.? If you are, figure min. two Cat-5e or Cat-6 to each jack location that has a coax running to it. There is more to it, then just throwing stuff together, due to you really need a plan in what you need for connections for each room, and how you are going to do it.


I was going to start running the coax cables first to the structure panel...get all of those done and then start some cat6 cable runs.




Would you guys ever recommend this....

I was considering taking "ALL" of my electronic equipment (not much but 3-4 cable boxes, 1 bluray player, Pioneer SC-05 receiver, Apple tv, maybe 1-2 other devices I can't think of) and putting them in a central location. Now instead of running coax or cat5-6 to each room location run just some good quality HDMI cables to each of the rooms where the devices need to be. Then each room gets a RF remote that is programmed to work just the devices it needs for the room.

I'm thinking this would save a bunch of cable runs of coax and cat5-6 and I wouldn't have to have a bunch of wall plates with all kinds of inputs/outputs. What do ya think...doable? Not recommended? Advice?

I've really thought a lot about this and it would seem to work out pretty nice for my setup that is not to extravagant but would still function pretty well, I guess.
post #6 of 13
You are describing distributed video. It is common in high-end custom AV installs.

Thousands of forum threads cover this topic, here at AVS and elsewhere.

Search for HDMI matrix, hdbaseT matrix, and HDMI problems.
post #7 of 13
Run all the RG6 and Cat cables anyway, you never know what might happen. And it's cheap. Plus it is really the standard for wiring now anyway.

As to having a centralized media location, you can certainly do that as well but if you are going to have a main surround system, in the living room per se, and 3 other rooms with cable boxes, I would not do the central system as the costs are much higher to do it correctly without other issues coming into play.

for eg: to run an hdmi cable a long distance for a cablebox, you will need a hdbaseT balun for reliability, plus 2 hdmi cables for each end, and ir system if you don't want to have a rf remote to control it (say if the rf can't reach that location). These products alone can cost anywhere from $700-$800 depending on manufacturer. And all you are really doing is finding a different place for the cablebox rather than in the same room as the tv.
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by todd1010 View Post

Thanks, is there a certain wire cutter that is recommended? I have seen some that do both cuts at the same time and other tools that you cut the end and then go back and cut the jacket down to the foil.

You just need a good sharp cutter to cut the cable to length and use the coax stripper to prep the cable for the connector. The compression tool then compresses the connector to seat it onto the cable. check Youtube for examples.
post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by ifor View Post

Normally, RG-11 is run from the street or pole to your demarc location. And is supplied form the cable company, as well as it's terminations.
Satellite rund RG-6(Q) from the dish to the distribution panel or demarc depending on installation. I like to run a couple of RG-6Q lines to a likey dish location while I can.

You can run 2 coax runs and a couple cat5e runs from the demarc location to the structured wiring panel. These 4 lines will cover most anything that comes your way.

I always run RG-6Q cable and have come to terminate them quite easily, although they tend to turn the ends of your fingers raw if you are doing a lot of ends.

I use Cable Prep 6590 combo kit for stripping and compression to do my ends.
http://www.specialized.net/Specializ...pper-5845.aspx

You will also need to get the appropriate ends for whichever cable you use, quad or not.

Actually RG-11 is only used for long drops. Most normal drops (less than 200' or so) use RG-6. And as pointed out elsewhere, 'Quad' cable is a waste of cash unless you live around strong RF signals. Barring that the picture quality of either is fine.
post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by olyteddy View Post

Actually RG-11 is only used for long drops. Most normal drops (less than 200' or so) use RG-6. And as pointed out elsewhere, 'Quad' cable is a waste of cash unless you live around strong RF signals. Barring that the picture quality of either is fine.

When I am running wire for a whole house, I don't want to be having to re-wire anything IF there are rf issues in the house or area. Plus it's only a $40 difference for me between quad and non-quad for 1000'. So it's really a no brainer for me. If I spend a little more, I know that I won't have any issues later. Which saves me time, money and labor.

In my area, I have yet to see a cable street or pole drop use anything but RG-11.
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by ifor View Post

In my area, I have yet to see a cable street or pole drop use anything but RG-11.

Around my area, Ariel runs are RG-6, buried is RG-11 or RG-6, depends on what is on the truck. As for using RG-6Q, because you assume there is going to be rf interference is over kill. If you use a good quality coax, the shielding will be enough in standard RG-6.
post #12 of 13
As far as tools go, monoprice has a good video on terminating RG6 and the compression tool and cable stripper used in the video both work very well. Check their youtube channel.

As far as cable goes, quad shield RG6 in bulk is cheap so I'm not sure why you wouldn't run it.
post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by todd1010 View Post

Now instead of running coax or cat5-6 to each room location run just some good quality HDMI cables to each of the rooms where the devices need to be. Then each room gets a RF remote that is programmed to work just the devices it needs for the room.

Instead of running HDMI cables, you could instead run Cat6 and use baluns. This would be much more flexible as category cable can be used for so many different things. Also, I would run at least one coax to each display. You may want to have an antenna feed or something direct to the TV in the future. This is what I'd do:

- 3x Cat6 minimum (more is better)
- 1x RG6 minimum
- 1x empty conduit (just in case)

The Cat6 can be used for HDMI (with HDBaseT baluns including IR), ethernet for smart TV (may be included in balun), USB over Cat6 for HTPC control etc etc. If you miss anything, which is pretty much inevitable, the conduit makes pulling new cable easy.
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