How To – Making Cable Tv Cables

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    Whether you are wiring your whole home or just making a custom cable that runs from your wall outlet to your television the steps and tools you need are the same.

    In this HowTo you will learn how to strip cable ends and use crimp connectors.

    Tools you will need
    RG-6 Crimping tool
    Utility knife or stripping tool
    Wire Cutters
    RG-6 Crimp Connectors

    See the bottom of the HowTo for Tool Links

    First lets talk about Cable TV Wire. There are two different grades that are commonly available at electrical supply centers RG6 and RG9. Both types are practically the same except that the solid core wire on RG6 cable is thicker and it has better shielding. Since there is no reason to skimp on your wiring you should always use RG6 cable for better reception and data transfers.

    You can purchase Cable TV wires in premade lengths of 5 foot 25 foot 100 foot and sometimes a few different sizes between. The times you will most likely want to build your own cables is when you are wiring many rooms in your home, adding cable modems or other devices or repositioning your homes furnishings.

    Because hand made cables can cause problems (signal leaks, lose connections) if they are not crimped correctly you should select a premade cable when you can if it is of good quality.

    Resizing premade cables can be difficult though because the manufacturers often use a more flexible shielding on the outside of the cable which is often difficult to make connections on. This is why premade cables use a molded cable connector which is plastic welded to the cable.

    To make your connections you first need to cut your cable to length. Standard wire cutters work better then most cutters found on crimping tools.

    Once you have cut the cable you need to remove the outside sheathing from the end.

    You should remove about 1/2 inch of the outside cover.

    Notice that the internal solid wire is protected by a solid plastic shielding. This is so the signals in the wire do not cross over or migrate causing interference between the positive and negative signals.

    First trim the outside wires flush with the end of the outside black shielding you just removed.

    Now you want to cut back the inside white solid shielding and leave about 1/4 of an inch exposed. This small part of the white shielding is the most important part if you want to get tight and shielded connections for good reception.

    Now you press on the cable crimp connector.

    Notice that the small white part that you left on will extend into the inside of the connector.

    Using your crimping tool squeeze the connector to make a tight connection.

    Too much pressure when crimping can cause the connector to crack at its base.

    If the connection is lose after crimping never try to make a second crimp on the connector as this will deform the connector resulting in a bad connection.

    If you decide to ignore this advice and make a second attempt at crimping the connector you need to line the crimper and connector up exactly in the same position as it was the first time.

    General grade crimpers and cable ends are available at most home stores.

    Waterproof connectors cost a little more but give great results.

    Hex Crimpers are also often better then standard crimpers when making connections.

    If you will be adding splitters to allow more connections then you should always use a bi-directional 2ghz rated connector if your cable service has Digital Tv Channels, Pay Per View, or Cable Modems.

    Cable Signal Booster boxes are not usually recommended for Cable TV.

    Ideal is one of the companies that produces a number of different crimping tools and parts for cable TV, Telephone and Data Networks.

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