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Old 4th October 2005, 01:48 AM   #1
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Default qustion on tube grade wiring

hey can I use cat 5 wiring to re-wire an old '36 RCA superhet reciever?

all the insulation on all the original wiring is cracked and FALLING OFF

will cat 5 copper wire ( the actual wires inside the outer sheath) handle the voltages and amperages I need it to?

many thanks,

TSD88
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Old 4th October 2005, 03:30 AM   #2
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The copper wire from cat5 cable was never meant to handle the voltages found in vacuum tube equipment. It might work if you were careful to keep the wires away from each other, and any other parts. That said, I would NOT USE IT. 600 volt rated wire is available from many distributors, and it is cheap. I just restored a similar RCA, and the wiring was in similar shape. If the radio is in good shape (mine wasn't) and you want to preserve the originality, you can get cloth covered wiring from Antique Electronics Supply (tubesandmore.com).
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Old 4th October 2005, 04:30 AM   #3
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no thanks, saftey and PRICE over originality

I found 22 gague solid copper wire at radio shack. 5$ for 90 feet ( 3x30 foot spools of diff. colors)

it is good up to 300 volts @ 7 amps


do you think this is fine? the old looks ( but I'm not sure) like 20 or 18 gague.

p.s

would like to see pics of yours, I'll do likewise!
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Old 4th October 2005, 05:54 AM   #4
wa2ise is offline wa2ise  United States
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Some Radio Shack wire I've seen didn't stand up to soldering iron temperatures too well. The insulation melted near terminals, etc when installing it onto thoe terminals.
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Old 4th October 2005, 06:32 AM   #5
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ah, well it doesnt need to be pretty , and I can always leave on excess insulation. All I need to know is if it will handle the voltage/amperage inside the radio with plenty of saftey margin
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Old 4th October 2005, 02:02 PM   #6
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I know that the Radio Shack wire is only rated for 300 volts, and there is about 300 volts running around in that radio, but that is what I used in my radio. It was cheap and I had it, so I used it. I figured that it was much better than what was in there. The wire that Antique Electronics sells is modern insulated wire, with a cloth covering, to look original. I have not tried it, since my radio was not in great shape.

I got the radio at a flea market for something like $20. I don't remember the actual price, but I only buy cheap radios. When I got it home, I couldn't wait to get it working, so I used what wire I had to replace the really rotten ones. Some of the original wires remain. I replaced all of the coupling caps and electrolytics in the radio. They were ALL dead. It began working as soon as I did that, original tubes still glowing.
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Old 4th October 2005, 03:00 PM   #7
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Hi,
I use the wire that Antique Electronics sells. I do like it. It does help preserve the look in a radio in good condition. It looks pretty funky in the new stuff I build as well.
I should ask around for modern wire I guess. But I like the look of this stuff.

-Chris
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Old 4th October 2005, 04:01 PM   #8
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Mine was my grandpa's, I think he did some work on it too. The power filter caps have been replaced and the rectifier has been modified with two diodes on the under side and a huge 4-value ceramic resistor ,wired in paralell, wired series with them. Other than that it looks original. It works fine, tranny overheats after half an hour though and I have to shut it off for fear of hurting it.

Oh, and I need to buy a 6d6 off of ebay, stupid things metal cap on top broke off ( it was already loose)


Heres another question, the resistors all look to be wire-wound. What can I replace them with, and what should the power rating on them be? ( without having to measure voltage drop, my mm busted the other day and I can't figure out whats wrong with it! cept for the fact that its a $15 one...dont laugh)

I have to get my wire at radio shack or do-it-best, no time or money to order. We're going shopping today anyway and we'll be out there. Should I get 20-18 gague instead just to be safe?
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Old 4th October 2005, 04:51 PM   #9
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I took this problem once to my local electronics shop....

my amp runs @380v and i asked him if u could use a 250v ac @ 10amp rated 7-pin connector for a connection to an external psu without danger...

he said because of the (relatively) low currents in tube amps that it should be of no concern....

else he'd pay for the damage....so i guess scaling down can be applied to this?????
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Old 4th October 2005, 07:53 PM   #10
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Your 250 VAC wire is okay as the peak voltage rating is 353V (250 * 1.414). Current has no bearing on the voltage rating at all!

-Chris
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