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[TowerTalk] Installing Coax Connectors

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Subject: [TowerTalk] Installing Coax Connectors
From: (
Date: Mon, 24 Mar 1997 14:56:53 +0000
> What is the best method of installing a coax connector on RG11 or
> RG8? 

Some people may be horrified at this, but...

For RG8 type coax, I strip approximately (I never measure it) 1¼" of
jacket. With my nifty soldering station (if I'm inside; I'll use my
torch if I'm outside) I tin the braid for about ½" centered about
5/8" from the edge of the jacket. When all is cool, I use a tubing
cutter to trim the tinned braid approximately ½" from the edge of the
jacket. Using a utility knife, I continue at that point to cut
through the dilectric down to the center conductor, and strip it off.
I now have about 3/4" of center conductor, and about ½" of tinned
sheild with a nice, slight taper at the end of the cable. 

I screw on the connetor and solder the center conductor (with
soldering station inside, torch outside). Then I hit the body of the
connector with the torch. This takes a little practice, because the
trick is not to stay too long. Watch the color of the connector body;
it should change once, which is when the solder should flow in to the
holes. Get solder in all four holes.

Did I mention the wet rag? Quench the connector immediately upon 
finishing soldering. Otherwise, the heat will wick up the body and 
begin melting the jacket outside the connector which makes it look 

Did I mention putting the barrel on before the connector? No matter 
how many connectors you do, you will forget 1 in 20 times. 
Fortunately, half of those will be the first connector on a short 

This works with foam dilectric, but you really need to watch
carefully, especially when tinning the braid; don't spend too much
time doing it. It also works with adapters (UG175 and UG176). 

Always, meter the connector to make sure there are no shorts. Always,
always, always do it before attaching the second connector. 

73, Rod N4SI
    The DXer formerly known as N9AKE
         (c) 5 November, 1996

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