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CAT5 cable


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I'm embarrased to ask this, lol, but is CAT5 cable the exact same thing as Ethernet networking cable ?

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You are correct. CAT5 is just the specification for 4 pair (8 conductor) communications cable with certain characteristics such as so many twists per inch in the pairs. But to answer your question, yes CAT5 cable is standard Ethernet cable. You can buy them premade with the ends on or purchase a bulk spool of cable and the ends and a crimper and make them up yourself for a custom fit.

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Haha, thanks for clearing that up. Here am I am searching for "CAT5" cable and I have two or three long ethernet cables sitting in my basement holding the floor down.

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lol, now all you have to do is find something else to hold the floor down while you use those. Unless you think the floor will stay where it is if you move them. Be carefull!

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cstom2002 wrote:

You can buy them premade with the ends on or purchase a bulk spool of cable and the ends and a crimper and make them up yourself for a custom fit.

If you go the bulk route make sure that you use STRANDED wire rather than solid. Solid cable is intended to be installed in a permanent location (meaning that it won't be moved around). Cables made from solid wire will work for a while but will eventually break if they are moved enough. I once resolved what was thought to be a major network problem (that several people had been unable to resolve) by replacing a 3 foot patch cord that someone made with solid cable.

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Good Point - Unfortunately bulk stranded wire is typically more expensive than solid. I have used solid just because that's what I have, but I do have a small spool of stranded for applications where I need it. Most pre-made patch cords are already stranded wire.

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cstom2002 wrote:

Good Point - Unfortunately bulk stranded wire is typically more expensive than solid. I have used solid just because that's what I have, but I do have a small spool of stranded for applications where I need it. Most pre-made patch cords are already stranded wire.

I believe you are right about the price! I'm not trying to say that solid won't work. I just wanted to make the point that over time it can (and will if moved around enough) break and can cause a hard to diagnose problem. I have seen deals on stranded wire (1000ft box) on eBay. I've never seen a pre-made patch cable made from solid wire but there are always inferior products out there.

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If you are running a number of cables, purchase a CAT 5 Tester. It would be great to know if you miss wired the connector before you trouble shoot during a show.

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