CAT-5 and CAT-6 control cable

IMPORTANT NOTE: The CAT-5 is very a cheap cable which you can buy all over the world. We use the outdoor FTP version for many years at OL7M contest QTH without any problems. Up to 100m+ it works with Stack Matches, 4SQ-8DIR, and also rotators. At the beginning of year 2021 I received messages from fellow HAM with some problems. There remains very low voltages at the end of 100m CAT-5 cable and the relays do not switch. I was looked in to the problem and found it. The issue is that CCA wire is used. This is Copper Clad/Coated Aluminum wire. This is an ALUMINUM wire with a very thin coating of copper. Please, keep in mind that aluminum is only about 60% as conductive as copper.

CCA Cable should be avoided

When network infrastructure budgets are tight, it can be tempting to cut corners where you can. One way we're seeing attempted cost savings is through the purchase of copper clad aluminum (CCA) cabling systems. Offered as a cost-effective replacement for solid copper cable, CCA cable is anything but an effective solution.

While CCA products might look like (and be advertised to function like) standard Category 5 or Category 6 cabling, there are major differences that could pose network problems, concerns about business continuity, and safety hazards.

CCA Defined

This type of cable has an inner aluminum conductor coated with copper, and is much lighter than solid copper cables. Because CCA cable is manufactured at a much lower cost, it offers higher profits to manufacturers that sell the product. CCA cabling does have its place when used in certain electrical applications to avoid problems with aluminum wire connections, but it's not a viable substitute for twisted-pair communications cabling.

Read articles from Belden.com CCA cable 5 reasons to stay awayCCA cable not in my network.

DC Resistance problem

  • - CCA wires has got almost the double DC resistance than Copper wire
  • - Voltage drop is too high and remote box does not work

cca cables vs solid copper wire by qro.cz hamparts.shop


  • - 25 AWG wires
  • - 24 AWG CCA wires for length more than 15m


  • - wires with diameter 24 AWG / 0.5 mm and more
  • - shielded cable - use shield wire as another GND wire - more "fat" = less resistance
  • - for length more than 80m is better to use more fat wires 22 AWG, 20 AWG / 0.8 mm and more
  • - for outdoor installation please use: Jacket Polyethylene (PE) for indoor

cat cables by qro.cz hamparts.shop


Do not buy CCA wires - COPPER CLAD ALUMINUM (CCA).

Examples of the wrong one:

  • Cable type - Cat5e bulk ethernet cable, 500ft roll, connector free
  • Material - Solid CCA (Copper Clad Aluminum) 24 AWG, Waterproof Shielding, Gigabit Network Ready (Not UV rated)
  • Solid UTP - (4-pair unshielded twisted pair) wires for economic use
  • Easy Spool Box - ideal for network installation. Applications include direct burial, outdoors, and other environments where the cable may need a waterproof shield, but NOT meant for direct sunlight
  • Color - Outside jacket comes in a black finish


- Double check material of wires, must be 24 AWG of lower (23, 22 etc.) / 0,5mm and thicker.
- Recommended: Polyethylene (PE) jacket, shielded
- Right cables are: Solarix SXKD-5E-FTP-PE, trueCABLE Cat5e Outdoor Shielded (FTP) with SOLID BARE COPPER CONDUCTORS etc.
- And must be:

Example one:

  • PREMIUM COPPER - Crafted from 100% solid bare copper wire, these cat 5e shielded bulk ethernet patch cables feature a durable design at an affordable price. This Cat 5e shielded bulk ethernet cable combines 24 AWG.
  • MAXIMUM COMPATIBILITY - Use the Cat5e shielded bulk patch cable to universally connect devices on a local area network (LAN) including laptops, PCs and MACs, computer servers, printers, modems, routers, switch boxes, network media players, NAS, VoIP phones, Poe devices and more.

Example two:

  • No connectors are on this cable for special installations. Cat5e 350 MHz Riser Outdoor Sunlight resistant and In-wall CMR rated Bulk 100 feet High Performance cable. All this cables are compliant and provide the highest standard for your professional networking needs.
  • UTP 24 AWG Solid Pure Bare Annealed Copper for the strongest signal you can achieve in networking Pure Copper provides better conductivity and enhanced flexibility with, while providing exceptional transmission and performance with lowest possible signal loss.

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