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Re: [TowerTalk] Aluminum clad wire

Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Aluminum clad wire
From: "Roger (K8RI)" <>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2010 04:17:26 -0500
List-post: <">>

On 12/30/2010 10:14 PM, WA2PUQ wrote:
> All:
> There has been quite a bit of conversation regarding the use of wire nuts on
> aluminum wire.  While it will probably not be a problem with ham antenna
> uses, I have seen wire nuts with burned insulation because the aluminum
> wire, even while twisted together, had the mentioned steel spring in the nut
> being used as the only connection between those wires.  The spring makes a
> fine toaster element and the nuts looked it.
> The reason is that the aluminum oxidizes almost immediately after the
> insulation is removed even if the wire is scrubbed to clean it (that's why
> it lasts so long without rusting).  The trick here is to use a piece of
> green ScotchBrite impregnated with Alconox.  The scrubber strips the oxide,
> the Alconox keeps it from returning so the wires actually make a usable
> connection when twisted and nutted.  And no, the flooded wirenuts are not
> the answer if the wire is not treated as described above.
> For aluminum house wire remediation a new crimp tool and sleeve has been
It's against code around here.
I don't think I could sleep at night in a house wired with aluminum.


Roger (K8RI)
> introduced by the Burndy corp. which is available only to certified
> electricians on a rental basis at several dollars per connection.  There is
> also a three cavity flooded set screw locked wiring device (Alumicon comes
> to mind) at 5 bucks per connection, but you don't need the expensive
> crimper.
> I had to learn about this as my brother in law has an AL wired house and we
> had to make a few repairs there.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Hans Hammarquist"<>
> To:<>
> Sent: Thursday, December 30, 2010 3:29 PM
> Subject: [TowerTalk] Fwd: Using aluminum wire [or aluminum clad wire]
>> It is the square, hard pin that is the secret behind the good and reliable
>> connection of wire wrapped connections. You will not even get a close
>> result if you wrap a wire around a round pin. (Been there, done that, and
>> that was tin plated Cu wire on tin plated Cu pins.) You have the same
>> mechanism with wire nuts. Inside the nut is a spiral spring made of square
>> wire. The sharp corners will press themselves into the softer metal in the
>> conductor and form a "gas tight" connection.
>> I wonder if we can use wire nuts to make the connections to Al wires in
>> antennas. Simple and cheap. Any comments?
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