DIY mains cable...

Discussion in 'DIY Discussion' started by julian2002, Aug 4, 2004.

  1. julian2002

    julian2002 Muper Soderator

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    hi,
    i'm thinking of taking a punt on one of these...
    http://www.hificables.co.uk/Product...D/2380/v/360ad650-abfa-472d-aab6-ed8267aad76d

    yes i could probably get all the bits cheaper individually but i've just done a search on shielded cable and places like maplin and rs want upwards of 80 quid for a 50 meter roll - F*CK that. i only need 5, 1m, cables in total (if they are any good).

    what price are decent plugs and iec sockets (like the wattgate from the supra kit)? as they do just the wire for 11 quid a meter which wilst still exhorbitant may work out cheaper for 5 meters (i'm clumsy).

    i've had a brief cast about and found some inca plugs for 20 quid and a cheap furutech for 19.99. so on face falue the supra jobbie doesn't seem too bad.

    basicly i'm fishing for any advice for sourcing the bits for a shielded mains cable (not woven as my naim gear doesn;t seem to like this - and neither anecdotally does my isotek).

    oh yes - is deoxit worth getting and playing with?
    cheers


    julian
     
    julian2002, Aug 4, 2004
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  2. julian2002

    thespirit3

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    I don't have the answer to your question - but, if you're interested in making a good quality mains filter to plug all your cables into - search ebay for items similar to http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=1267&item=3831374777&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW - that's a professional mains filter, and in some respects is probably better than those used in high end mains filters for audio gear. EMC/RFI filters IEC inlets also come up on ebay quite regularly - and changing any mains IEC sockets on your CDP/amp etc to EMC/RFI filtered ones can make a huge difference.

    Also - use one of these to replace your standard wall sockets - http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=16164&item=3831272426&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW - - get any nasty RF off the mains ... supress spikes too.

    All these filters are hugely expensive when new - but for some reason seem to be sold for stupidly cheap prices on ebay. I think maybe the hifi crowd haven't noticed the availability of these things ... but I'm sure that'll change now I've posted here :D

    Normally, typing 'EMC RFI' into the ebay search box will return loads of hits - but at the moment it seems kinda quiet.


    Steve
     
    thespirit3, Aug 5, 2004
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  3. julian2002

    julian2002 Muper Soderator

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    steve,
    thanks for that but i've already got an isotek minisub for mains conditioning. also my amps are really fussy about cables and conditioning so i've got to be a bit careful about what i plug them into. certainly the woven cables i've tried didn't do them any favors.
    cheers


    julian
     
    julian2002, Aug 5, 2004
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  4. julian2002

    michaelab desafinado

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    I'm in a bit of a similar position wrt to obtaining a sensible amount of screened cable. A 50m roll is just f*cking ridiculous :mad: . Fortunately a kind forum member supplied me with a 1m length for me to play with :) . Will get IEC and Schuko (continental mains) plugs from Audusa.com.

    Michael.
     
    michaelab, Aug 5, 2004
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  5. julian2002

    Dev Moderator

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    Hi guys,

    I'd also like to try a bit of BIY, so can we just buy a 50m roll and share it?
     
    Dev, Aug 5, 2004
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  6. julian2002

    julian2002 Muper Soderator

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    i've actually gone against my own advice and leapt for one of these kits and some deoxit - adding the cost of the parts it's actually not a bad deal.
    i'll let y'all know what it's like.
    however if a few more people are up for splitting the cost of a 50 m roll of shielded 4mm 3 core then i'd be well up for it. i'd probably need about 10 meters. the big deal would be sourcing cheap decent uk3pin plugs (the mk's are 9 quid each) and good iec's (the wattgates the kit has are 20 quid a pop from russ andrews! but i've seen some for 7 on audusa - ta michael). so even if the cable comes out at 2 quid a meter to build an equivalent cable would cost about 30 quid! (but only 18 for the audusa option).
    one question. what should be done with the screening? should it be left unconnects or connected to the earth pin and if so at which end?
    cheers


    julian
     
    julian2002, Aug 5, 2004
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  7. julian2002

    kermit still dreaming.......

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    If your after something like toughplugs , then rs components were selling them at a min order of 10 I think .
    So if three of you are getting together to buy the cable , maybe you can do the same with plugs .
     
    kermit, Aug 5, 2004
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  8. julian2002

    BL21DE3 aka 'Lucky'

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    Julian, I believe that you'd want to connect the shielding to the earth pin of the mains plug but leave it disconnected at the end going into the equipment. If I remember correctly that should mean that any junk in the line/from outside gets picked up by the shield and fed back down to the earth and not into the supply of the attached unit. The same basic theory as used in semi-balanced interconnects.
     
    BL21DE3, Aug 5, 2004
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  9. julian2002

    julian2002 Muper Soderator

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    bl21de3,
    sounds like it makes sense. i'll give it a try when i get the stuff together.
    cheers


    julian
     
    julian2002, Aug 5, 2004
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  10. julian2002

    thespirit3

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    Just to complicate things ...

    Most modern houses in the UK don't have real earths. The earth pin is usually bonded to the neutral, which is then itself earthed at the local sub-station. Hence, the short path to earth isn't as short as you'd think (maybe several miles) - a) it doesn't necessarily provide a good earth b) it can drift away from earth (sometimes lethally so - under certain fault conditions) and c) in both a and b it can end up carrying an AC signal (possibly 50hz, possibly RFI). So, it might all be a bit pointless.

    You can install your own earth, but it's not as simple as driving a metal pole into the ground. It can also be quite dangerous - as unless completely isolated from the mains earth, you could end up acting as the least-resistance-path for all the houses in your street.

    But, if you're serious about shielded cables and filtered mains ... it's probably a subject which is worth investigating further.


    Steve
     
    thespirit3, Aug 5, 2004
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  11. julian2002

    penance Arrogant Cock

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    Sorry, but thats not strictly true. Most modern instalations seem to be PME these days, so you do have a permanent mains earth
     
    penance, Aug 5, 2004
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  12. julian2002

    robs

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    Farnell sell shielded multi core mains cable by the meter..CY or summat like that.
     
    robs, Aug 5, 2004
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  13. julian2002

    Jackthebiscuit Allrise

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    Jackthebiscuit, Aug 5, 2004
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  14. julian2002

    themadhippy seen it done it smokin it

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    pme=tn-c-s or earth neutral combined (supply side) seprate (consumer side),the neutral point is conected to earth at the substation and in some case also along the cable length,the olny commomly used proper earth distrabution system is either a tn-s (seprate neutral and earth on the incoming supply), or a tt supply (normally overhead cables)which relies on a local earth,normally an earth rod
     
    themadhippy, Aug 5, 2004
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  15. julian2002

    julian2002 Muper Soderator

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    well the supra kit arrived today along with a small can of deoxit. so i set about building it. the build is fairly simple even for someone with as little diy talent and equipment as myself. (basicly all thumbs, a pair of scisors, pliers, a kitchen knife and some screwdrivers).
    i followed the instructions on the site i bought it from - you have to mangle the mains plug a little to get the wires to fit and the rest was down to good old BF&I.
    i sprayed all the screw contacts liberally with deoxit and assembled it.
    plugged it into a socket in the kitchen with nothing on the end and no sparks, magic smoke or fuse box shenanigans so tried to connect it to my dac. discovered 1 meter may have been a little underoptomistic so after shoving bits of paving slab and the isotek about and much sweating and reaching behind my racks eventually got it to just about reach. plugged in, switched on and viola we have lights on the dac. fired up some music - no music, turn off the mute switch after palpitations stop and music comes flooding out.
    i'm currently listening to some gatecrasher compilations so not the best thing for critical apraisals. i'm reserving my judgement for now but suffice to say my immediate impressions were 'that sounds right'. more later....
    cheers


    julian
     
    julian2002, Aug 6, 2004
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  16. julian2002

    BL21DE3 aka 'Lucky'

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    Glad to hear that you got the kit assembled and working ok. I know the feeling of plugging something in and nothing happening, only to discover you've selected the wrong input on the amp or something equally simple. Did you bother with attaching the shield to earth?
     
    BL21DE3, Aug 6, 2004
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  17. julian2002

    julian2002 Muper Soderator

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    aparently with this cable the earth insulation is partially conductive so is always connected to the shield without specificly being connected.

    if we club together and get some shielded cable i'll probably give connecting it to earth a go.

    i'm going to leave the cable on the dac for a while and then try it on my power amp.
    cheers


    julian
     
    julian2002, Aug 6, 2004
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  18. julian2002

    BlueMax

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    I tried to organise a group buy for the Belden double shielded Teflon insulated cable few weeks ago. Got 6 people interested including myself.
    Will pass on the details if you buy a reel from Anixter UK, the main Belden distributor.
     
    BlueMax, Aug 6, 2004
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  19. julian2002

    julian2002 Muper Soderator

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    blue max,
    do you have a part number?
    cheers

    julian
     
    julian2002, Aug 6, 2004
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  20. julian2002

    julian2002 Muper Soderator

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    i was thinking this:
    http://rswww.com/cgi-bin/bv/browse/...eID=ukie&3269279827=3269279827&stockNo=379671

    which is 136 quid for a 50m roll.

    or
    http://rswww.com/cgi-bin/bv/browse/...eID=ukie&3269279779=3269279779&stockNo=379413

    which is 111.25 for 50 m of 3 core 4mm^2 or there is some 6mm^2 4 core for 170.08

    if termination costs are about 12 quid then a 1m cable for each type costs..

    1 = 2.72 a meter + termination = 14.72
    2 = 2.22 a meter + remination = 14.22
    3 = 3.40 a meter + termination = 15.40

    that's assuming a cheap iec. if you wanted wattgates or furutechs it'd be more like 25 quid each cable.

    i'm leaning towards the 1st type but if anyone can offer good reasons for going with one of the others i'll listen.
    i'd need about 10, say 15 meters for mistakes / experimentation so that would leave 35 meters for others (unless we get a flood of wants) i'd like to have definite homes for at least 20 meters of that (for one roll) before i ordered but if i can get that i'll order it asap.

    any ideas if any of those would be ok as interconnects?
    cheers


    julian
     
    julian2002, Aug 6, 2004
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