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Where & What Wire?

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  • Member since
    February 2002
  • 8 posts
Where & What Wire?
Posted by BlueMountain on Saturday, April 6, 2002 7:39 AM
I'm a "figure it out as you go" type. I'm currently laying track on my HO railroad and plan to use DCC. I've read up on wiring and I've purchased 14 gauge wire for my main runs but I can't find spools of smaller gauge wire in long lengths (less cost). So three questions:

Q1: Should I use 20 or 22 gauge wire for my feeders from my 14 gauge mains?

Q2: Solid or Stranded for the 20/22?

Q3: Where on the Internet (or around GR, MI) can I get 100' to 500' spool of the wire and "wire terminals" and "suitcas tap-in connectors" that are recommoned in many many MR articles?

Thanks for your time and help!

-Jeff
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 302,230 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, April 6, 2002 2:19 PM
Wire is available in up to 500" rolls in colors from Home Depot. Some sizes of connectors are also available at Home Depot.
  • Member since
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  • 302,230 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, April 6, 2002 2:21 PM
Jeff, did you try an outo parts store for wire? I'm pretty sure you can buy 50' spools at NAPA or Auto Zone but I'm not sure of the guages they carry.......Jamie
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 302,230 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, April 6, 2002 2:22 PM
I forgot to add Home Depot to the list.
  • Member since
    February 2002
  • 8 posts
Posted by BlueMountain on Saturday, April 6, 2002 2:45 PM
I did purchase two 500' rolls of 14 gauge wire (one red, one white) for my trunk lines. Radio Shack, Home Depot (2), nor Menards had long rolls of 20 or 22 gauge wire. Radio Shack had a three roll pack (green, black and red) of 20 gauge at 20' each roll, but that was $4.50 per pack.

Thanks for the help. Still looking. :(

-Jeff
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 302,230 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, April 6, 2002 3:22 PM
Check Lowes they are cheaper sometimes.
  • Member since
    January 2001
  • From: Guelph, Ont.
  • 1,476 posts
Posted by BR60103 on Saturday, April 6, 2002 10:39 PM
Hi Jeff!
You should be able to get the smaller wire at an electronics supply store. If you know someone who is having their office telephones redone, there is usually a pile of nicely coloured wire pulled out and discarded.
Solid vs stranded? Stranded wire is better if it's going to be flexed a lot -- pickup from diesel trucks or the leads for handheld throttles.
I think solid wire is cheaper because there's less manufacturing effort. For track wiring, I would go with whichever turns up.
20 or 22? for HO, I'd go with the larger if you have a choice. Keep the length of it as short as possible - not over 6 inches, better about 3. You're mainly using it for appearance at the side of the rails.
David

--David

  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 302,230 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Monday, April 15, 2002 6:46 PM
Uh, Jeff, are you saying 20-feet is not enough wire for feeders on a DCC layout??? Just how big is your layout? Actually, I realize you probably just don't want to pay Radio Shack's price, but, even if you get it cheaper, you're probably going to end up w/ extra wire that ends up on your shelf.

You can continue to search for a better deal, or you can suck it up, get it wired, and run trains sooner.

Just my two-cents....

Pete
  • Member since
    February 2002
  • 8 posts
Posted by BlueMountain on Saturday, April 20, 2002 3:09 PM
Ya Pete, I might have to get it at Radio Shack. Monday I'm trying an electral supply shop when I get to town.

Oh ya. For my fist layout (second if you count the figure-8 I had 25 years ago) I started out small:
11' x 25'+ room
100'+ of main line
300' of track
30+ switches
1 yard: 5 track, 16' max

:)

Thanks for the help!

-Jeff

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