Mast cable

Twister_Ken

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Last few inches of my masthead light cable is in a sorry state (where it emerges from the base of the mast and goes through a deck gland to connect up below. Even some bare wire. So I need to repair/replace. Never taken a cable out of the mast (mast will be down, which is why I was jiggering about with the cable in the first place). Presume, if I'm replacing, I can use the old cable as a pull-through. How practical/sensible though would it to go back up the old cable to sound wire, and splice a couple of feet of new cable in using connectors and heat sealing the whole issue, then pulling the joint into the mast? It'll be below any halyards, etc.

And if replacing, what sort of cable to use? As I recall, currently three strand (tricolour in, anchor light in, common out) 12V, 25W bulb.
 

ccscott49

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Replace all of it. Garden cable, for mains in garden etc. It's tinned, flexible, waterproof cable which is best for this job. Stuff I have is very slightly ribbed, yellow insulation, good stuff. I'm sure some B7Q's or garden centres would have it.
 

Topcat47

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I did this last year. I agree regarding the "Garden Cable".

One word of warning about using the existing cable as a "mouse". It is old and the sheathing will be relatively stiff and brittle. If you manage to connect it to the new cable (presumably similar in diameter) it will be difficult to tell whether you've snagged the new cable or just got to a particularly nasty bit of the old. Also I tried to solder the new cable to the old and found the solder wouldn't take. In the end i used a thickish length of auto cable as a mouse, soldered all three ends of the new cable to it, wrapped a bit of heat shrink round it (probably overkill, but the new cable did not snag on it's way in) and if fed in a treat.
 

cliff

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[ QUOTE ]
and you can pull in a spare wire for the masthead television aerial amplifier power supply as well.

[/ QUOTE ]Ooooh, the one I fitted gets its power via the coax so no need for an extra power supply run up the mast - Don't ask me how it works but there is a little box below decks that powers the mast head amp via the coax.
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wooslehunter

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As said, it's best done with the mast down. Take the mast foot off & don't be tempted to "push a bit into the mast and pull some out of the top". You'll get a knot and break the join. I did with a VHF Cable.
 

andf

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Having done this a couple of times now, like most jobs I think preparation is all. I would remove any top or fittings/plates that the mast has so that the ends of the conduit are exposed (assuming there is a conduit, if not, then it is the play of children to pull a new cable up the mast so ignore all the rest!) Attach a mouse to the old cable, I use 2/3mm braided cord but thin wire would do, and pull the mouse in when removing the old cable. By removing the end plates etc you will have a straight run for the incoming mouse/cable which can be laid out in a line on the ground. The job is then to walk to the other end of the mast and pull gently and steadily.

Crianza
 

Vara

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Having done this job a few times,and lost ends in masts a few times as well.
I now dont use the old cable to pull the new cable through but use it to pull a strong thin cord through which is then used as the mousing cable and after the job is done leave it in situ for the next time.
Always have a mast length of galvanised fencing wire handy,for when it all goes pear shaped!
 
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