While PL-259's and barrel connectors may not have enough loss on HF to worry
about, they certainly make nice markers when sweeping coax runs with a TDR!
You can see every connector's impedance bump. Not so with N connectors....
The most common cause of excessive insertion loss I have seen with PL-259's
is a solder ball on the end of the center pin spreading the mating female
contacts. After a few insertion cycles a cheap SO-239 may read 2-5 ohms
through the center pin. Then there are the connectors where someone scraped
all the solder balls off with a knife, taking all the plating with it.
Every ham club should offer classes on how to install coax connectors and
what kinds NOT to buy at hamfest!
It takes a lot of heat to get a connector warm to the touch, due to thermal
conduction of the copper center wire and shield of the coax.
TowerTalk mailing list