I've been using Flexweave (not sure of gauge) for a couple of years on a
dipole. I had a failure after a wind storm where some tree branches had
abraded the cable. I think this is a failure mode to worry about. If
the wire rubs on anything, it will fail strand by strand until the whole
thing gives out. I replaced the failed section with Copperweld - better
than disfiguring the tree.
As others have said, the stuff oxidizes pretty quickly. I found it very
difficult to solder after it had been out in the weather. How do you
strip the oxide off a zillion small strands? (Chemically, maybe?) Solid
or conventional stranded wire is a lot easier to handle that way.
Given the oxidation, you have to wonder what the RF properties of
flexweave are after weathering. It's like Litz wire.
73 Martin AA6E
> Hi Jim, I found your comments below interesting. Do you really see an
> advantage using solid wire over stranded for a given size? I would have
> guessed stranded was more stable and stronger and maybe I have had it wrong
> all these years.
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> e-mail address at w8bya (at) mchsi (dot) com
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> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Jim Brown" <email@example.com>
> To: "Tower Talk List" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> Sent: Saturday, September 02, 2006 11:43 AM
> Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Ernesto ate my windom
>> On Sat, 02 Sep 2006 11:21:01 -0400, Jim Jarvis wrote:
>>> The #14 PE insulated superflex
>> What is "superflex?" Do you mean "flexweave?" I tried some #12 on
>> several antennas, and it broke in less than a year on all of them.
>> I'm a firm believer in POC -- plain ordinary copper -- that I buy
>> from my local hardware or electrical supply store. Antennas that
>> must withstand big stress are #10 solid, the rest are #12 solid.
>> Another important thing I learned (the hard way) is to never put
>> solder where it will stress or move. Put the stress on unsoldered
>> lengths of wire, then loop the wire over to where you're going to
>> solder it (or otherwise secure the connection). Yes, it adds some
>> inductance. So what -- it simply adds to the length of the antenna,
>> so you cut it slightly shorter.
>> If you want to be stealthier, use black insulation or bare copper.
>> Stranded wire corrodes faster. If you must use stranded wire, use
>> very good insulation on it, and pay careful attention both to the
>> stress you place on the ends and the protection of exposed ends from
>> Jim Brown K9YC
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