'Do not' - trust your cable meter.

Discussion in 'Chit-Chat' started by Wetstuff, Oct 2, 2018.

Share This Page

  1. Wetstuff

    Wetstuff Young grasshopper

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2017
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    8
    Location:
    Salisbury Maryland
    I have been kind of rolling naked in cactus with my NVR, camera and cable issues. I've had lotsa 'No Link' (..or is it Data?) issues. I finally get a POE setup to work and a G-D mouse chews the cable. And of course - that's not the first thing you think of after having numerous other issues...

    I am a cable master at this point. I can almost repeat the B-color code upon demand ...but, I had some serious issues about a week ago. After all the prior issues, I bought myself a cable tester. G-D'it! I was going to get this right!

    And it worked good ...'till it didn't. 'Sombitch would give me a 'no light' on #7 ...and weakness on 5 & 6. I put on one new connector - same result. ...300' away I put on a new end at the other end - same result. G-D'it!

    I think I did that a couple of times before I remembered I had a short commercial cable. "# 7 was out and 5&6 were weak". Sheee'it! When your tools mislead you, you know you picked the wrong job.

    But I cannot be without one, so I got another tester and will keep the short cable in my box to 'proof' the meter before I test a cable. I thought I would post a picture of the criminal - it's the cream colored one. The orange seems to be very closely related, but I have my short cable ...and I hope not to need this often.

    Jim
     

    Attached Files:

  2. smole

    smole n3wb

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2017
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    2
    You should've gotten one of these.

    I've got one and it works great + gives out POE readings + RG59 (analog camera cable) + it does telephone cable readings (not that i need them).
     
  3. J Sigmo

    J Sigmo Getting comfortable

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2018
    Messages:
    392
    Likes Received:
    301
    It's always a royal pain when your test equipment lies to you. I feel your pain. I believe it was Reagan who famously said: "Trust but verify." :)

    As you go through years of troubleshooting, you learn two things:

    1. Always be very suspicious of "coincidences".

    2. Never completely discount the possibility of a coincidence.

    Oh, and you're right about rodents. The little buggers just LOVE to chew on wire.
     
  4. Mr_D

    Mr_D Getting comfortable

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2017
    Messages:
    451
    Likes Received:
    321
    Location:
    Southern California
    Simple testers aren't very reliable. Better ones will test for split pairs which is very important. Really good ones will test for all kinds of other stuff but are also very expensive. I have the second kind.
     
  5. Wetstuff

    Wetstuff Young grasshopper

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2017
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    8
    Location:
    Salisbury Maryland
    Mole and D.... I am kind of a tool hound. I work in fabric, so I got LOTSA tools ...I dabble in wood and metal, so I have some of that stuff - saws, grinders, welders, etc ...and even a couple of electrical specific tools. ....but, I have found places like Amazon and Harbor Freight great for crappy, easy to learn, job-specific tools that I 'perhaps' will need 2-3X a year. I bought a decent digital clamp meter - now I have to find a night school class on how to use it...

    Thanks, guys. Even tho' I piss-n-moan, it's nice to get up in the morning and (try to ) learn something new.

    Jim
     
  6. TonyR

    TonyR IPCT Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2014
    Messages:
    2,459
    Likes Received:
    2,028
    Location:
    Alabama
    I'm a big proponent of using what works for you. Since we are all unique in our DNA, we are have different talents and degree of expertise. That being said, I have the first kind....the simple, cream & green under $10 'el cheapo' from China. I've been using it almost 10 years, hasn't lied to me yet. For me, it's been a helpful, go/no-go tester. It seems when you've done several hundred RJ-45 terminations, you get to where you can do them, and do them well, blindfolded. At least I can. And no, I didn't start out that way. I made my share of bad ones initially but climbed the learning hill quickly and have been on the plateau for some time now. I would guesstimate that all of these several hundred terminations out there are still performing reliably because the folks that I did them for still have my phone number. Perfect? No, not by a long shot. But very good at it.

    My point? Use what works best for you. If you're really good at something, you need less supervision....if you're prone to stumbling in the process and have less than desirable results too often, you likely need a better tester...at least until you get better at the task.

    The best way to get good at anything is practice.....and more practice.

    BTW, I suck at plumbing and woodworking / carpentry. Being a homeowner for over 40-odd years, you get to try your hand at all the skills. I'd rather get a root canal than tackle a leaky sink drain tailpipe or unclog a sink drain. For me, building a birdhouse presents as much of a challenge as would a 3 story mansion. :facepalm:
     
    JDJ, looney2ns and actran like this.
  7. TechBill

    TechBill Getting comfortable

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2014
    Messages:
    964
    Likes Received:
    316
    I use the cream and green one too. It does the job for me which is to make sure there is no break in the line or if the wires are in the wrong order after I make the cables.

    I never saw the need to buy a higher end tester which does more detail test like the data traffic quality etc for home uses. But for business or commercial installments where you have to run thousands of feet worth of cables then it would be worth the investment. If I suspect I had a bad cable, I'll just yank it out and insert in a new one since in my home, the longest cable run is probably less than 50 feet.
     
    looney2ns likes this.