Topband: Conductivity of stainless steel hardware

Bill Wichers billw at
Sun Jan 26 10:42:52 EST 2014

I've used stainless plenty of times and haven't ever really noticed any problems, but I've never tried to make measurements either. My new vertical matching network I'm building using silicon bronze hardware to bring out the connections but that's mostly just because I can. I don't really expect any practical difference. 

Silicon bronze is mostly copper with some silicon added to make it stronger. It's commonly used in the telecom industry for power connections, but its also used in marine construction and high voltage switchgear. It's readily available from hardware suppliers but it costs more than stainless. If you want the best conductivity and corrosion resistance then silicon bronze hardware is probably your best bet. 


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On Jan 26, 2014, at 9:54 AM, "Charles Stackhouse" <cstack14478 at> wrote:

> I have been building antenna hardware such as transmitting chokes, Beverage transformers, etc. in various plastic boxes. The electrical connections have been to solder lugs fastened inside the boxes to stainless hardware. The actual antenna wires have been connected outside the boxes to the stainless hardware such as eyebolts or bolts with wingnuts. 
> A very tech savvy friend (microwaves, public safety radio) says this is no good. Due to the poor 
> conductivity of stainless steel, RF connections should not be through the hardware but through wires brought out of the boxes soldered directly to the antenna wires. 
> I would appreciated the advice of this group.
> Charlie, W2GN
> _________________
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