[TowerTalk] Long Cable for Yaesu Rotor

Ralston, William William.Ralston at viasat.com
Sun Apr 20 23:51:37 EDT 2014

Larry K4AB asks:

>I'm planning for a run of 400' and I'm thinking that maybe too long,
>even using the heavier cable.

I've never had a problem with my Yaesu G-1000.  It was fed through a 435' foot run using a mix of two-strands-in-paralleled of #18, single #18, and #12 wire.  It's a bit complex because I have bulkheads with lighting arrestors at both the house and tower, and feed three rotators and a number of control boxes though several shared wire bundles (I'll call them cables).  Before rearranging things, I had 10 different cables providing 50 distinct wires (plus a number of shields/grounds) all run through the 325' underground conduit).  I used heavier wire (or two wires in parallel) for the motor runs.  I did some cost calculations and concluded that, for my situation, using a lot of locally available (big box home improvement store) cable was more economical that any "rotator" cable.

So, here's the details on my G-1000 wiring, it used the following:

18/10 cable is underground rated "sprinkler wire" - 10 insulated #18 wires
12/2 cable is UF ("underground feeder") grade "house wire" - 2 insulated #12 wires plus a bare ground wire

100' (from rotator to tower bulkhead) - 2 #18 in parallel for each line (2 motor lines, 3 indicator pot lines x 2 each for total 10 wires)
325' (from tower bulkhead to house bulkhead) - #12 for motor, single #18 for pot
10' (from control box to house bulkhead) 2 #18 in parallel for motor, single #18 for pot

The 18/10 cable is underground rated "sprinkler wire"
The 12/2 is UF ("underground feeder") grade "house wire"

As a good undergraduate EE exercise you can look up the resistance of the #18 and #12 wire and do all the necessary calculations to calculate the total resistance for the motor and pot lines (they're different) if you like.  :-)

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