Cat5e / cat6?

Discussion in '101 Display Basics' started by BoonDogs, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. BoonDogs

    BoonDogs I am self diagnosed with CLAP

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    Is it a bad idea to use cat 5e/cat6 to extend my water proof pigtails and wire a PSU up to a controller? As long as it's 24v / 12vdc there shouldn't be any problems right?
     
  2. scamper

    scamper Senior Elf

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    I have been using cat5 for my pixels wiring, but still need power injection using a heavy duty 2 core cable.
    Main thing to watch out for is if it is solid core, then be careful not to bend/kink it too much.
     
  3. AAH

    AAH I love blinky lights :) Community Project Designer

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    If you are talking power wiring rather than signal then the cat5/6 cable is next to useless. The pigtails will use either 0.5mm2 or 0.75mm2 cable which is good for 5A or 7.5A. Cat6 cable (which is a fair bit thicker than Cat5) is about 0.2mm2 which is "good" for about 2A max. If it's power wiring that you are extending then you are better off trashing a cheap 3 or 4 core mains (240V) extension lead. It's typically 0.75mm cable.
     
  4. nato595

    nato595 Let's do this!

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    I use 4 conductor, stranded, in-wall speaker cable for all my extensions. It's great for power and data in one.
     
  5. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    Ive always been against using CAT5/6 cable for lighting power because it has a low current carrying capacity compared to the current needed to run a standard string, is normally solid core as that is the cheapest and the main reason people want to use it. So what people do is double up and triple up the cores to get a higher current carrying capacity, but by using solid core you then run a very high risk of a core of 2 breaking and then overloading the cable because solid core is designed for permanent non moving installations. In extreme cases this could lead to a fire. The cost of stranded Cat5/6 can be as much or more then just buying the right stuff in the first place.
     
  6. bpj1980

    bpj1980 Full Time Elf

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    Eddy & the others make some great points, Solid core cat5 breaks very easy,
    I myself used Solid Core Cat5 for all my Data last year, got some really good distances out of it for a P12s (not known for distance) i got further using Cat5 that the COAX during my testing, so i stayed with this,
    Let me stress this was for the DATA & - ONLY!, and how i used it was Green (one core) for the Data and the Brown & Brown/White Twisted together for - (two cores) i ran a separate FIG8 cable (think it was rated 15amp but could have been higher, will need to check) for all my Power + & - and injected after approx every 40-50 Pixels, anymore and you could see the brightness of white fading to yellow,
    Also make sure those waterproof pigtails stay waterproof, joining them make sure you weatherproof them, i.e. glue filled heat shrink & silicone, i was surprised with how much water managed to get past my joins last year, had a few pixel replacements along the way, oh well i know for this year...
    good luck with everything for 2016 setup... not long now Jan is almost over.
     

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