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BNC connectors and cable


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I've been having a PM chat with bobsy about BNC connectors and wondered if anyone has any comments on putting connectors on cable. He swears by crimping, using Radialls, with Canford strain reliefs.


I don't have a crimp tool, and although using the radiall non-crimp types, never seem to quite get it right!


Has anybody got any helpful tips or tricks. I'm pretty good at putting on RF types, BNC, TNC, N etc, but the double screened video stuff never seem to go on properly.


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I had a very similar conversation at work a few weeks ago, with two groups of people. One was the IT network installation technicians - who rarely touch BNC these days, but used to do thousands of them (50 ohm) back in the days of 10Base2 ethernet.


The other group was the AV technicians, who regularly do video cables by the dozen.



Both groups swear by crimping, but it's critical to make sure you have the correct crimp tool for the plug, and the right plug for the cable. All the people I spoke to use RS-branded plugs, and the RS ratchet hand crimper.


Edit: I should have said "the RS ratchet hand crimper for site installations, and a bench-mounted one in the workshop"



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I'm not sure if I said "swear by" or "swear at" crimp BNCs, but...


As Bruce said, what ever brand you choose it is absolutely essential that the cable, connector and crimp tool are all a perfect match. The best ones have removable inserts that let you change them if, for whatever reason, you need to change one element.


Beyond that, I'd also say that for preseverving sanity you also need a specialist, matchine stripper for the cables you use. Mine does all the different layers to exactly the right length in a single action.


The trouble is, gear to do it properly is not cheap. I only have it because of my mis-spent years working on broadcast installations--I'm not sure I could justify the expense just for the theatre work I now do in my semi-retirement.


And, to put is all in perspective, a professional "wire man" doing a studio install can make of a BNC about 5 times faster than I've ever managed it! Practice is also a big part of it!



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Working in a broadcast enviroment I haven't seen a solder BNC in years. Everything is crimped. When I first started out in TV I bought an RG58/59 crimp tool from Maplin which cost about £25 iirc and an rg58/9 cable stripper for about £8.


These weren't ideal but I still successfuly crimp PSF1/3 at home with it.



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Advice: Go out and purchase a Stanley engraver tool, which will cost you less than most crimp tools. On each crimp tool you purchase then engrave both your name, and what the hell it does. After a while they all the coax tools look pretty much the same.


I've got a box with nearly a dozen crimp tools in it, but no-one gave me this bit of advice when I started collecting them...

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