In a message dated 99-06-30 12:03:33 EDT, firstname.lastname@example.org writes:
> > The stuff is probably conductive only when it's under compression.
> > No matter... it will be under compression when you reassemble the
> > antenna and clamp the tubes together. The major function of the
> > paste is to prevent the aluminum from oxidizing, making the
> > electrical connection between the tubes pretty much weatherproof.
> Hy-Gain people (the real Hy-Gain, not the new one) don't even recommend
> conductive paste. They recommend plain aluminum anti-oxidant you can
> buy at your local electrical wholesaler or elsewhere.
Actually, conductive paste is a misnomer. The 'vehicle' part of the
anti-oxidant (most of the product) does not conduct. It's the particles in
the vehicle that, under compression (nut and bolt, hose clamp, rivet, etc.),
penetrate the outer oxidized skin and provides a conductor between the pieces
of metal under compression.
The vehicle also prevents oxygen from getting into the joint and - of
course - oxidizing it.
If you were to stick a couple of probes in a glob of any antioxidant
and test for continuity, it wouldn't be conductive.
Be sure to read the label to make sure you've got the right product for
aluminum or copper. Most will do both.
Cheers, Steve K7LXC
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