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  #1  
Old 05-03-2013
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Running Wind Instrument Cable

I have a dilemma on this; I'm installing a new Raymarine (ST60+) wind instrument and need to run the cable down the mast. Mast is ~60' tall with an existing wind instrument cable running up but it's from an old Signet system. I'm afraid that if I try and pull the new cable down using the old as a messenger that it will either get hung up (say if there are wire ties bundling it to other wires) or I will lose the connection to the messenger on the way down.

We tested the wires from the old cable for continuity and they all test good. Would it be better to make a splice onto the old cable; or try pulling the new one? If so what sort of multi-pin connector would be best aloft? Would a waterproof junction box be easier/better to install?

There is also a VHF antenna wire exiting at the same location as the transducer cable; so these two could be bundled. Would it be better to pull both down and install a messenger line to pull the new transducer cable/VHF combo?
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Old 05-03-2013
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Re: Running Wind Instrument Cable

Why not just wire it up with the old cable and see how it works? If it doesn't work, then go ahead and pull the new cable. I wouldn't bundle the antenna coax with anything else, as you might get cross-talk.
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Old 05-03-2013
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Re: Running Wind Instrument Cable

One issue is that the new cable is about ~100-150' long so I'd be adding it's resistance to that of the old wire (measures 1ohm per strand at 60'). I have not measured the resistance of the new cable yet.

The coax antenna was installed with the old anemometer cable ~30 years ago. I could try running the anemometer cable down the mast from the top by replacing a wire for the tricolor; but then there would be an issue with E/M interference with those wires, right? At least the VHF wire is passive unless I am transmitting, correct?
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Old 05-03-2013
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Re: Running Wind Instrument Cable

I just went through the same installation. I did not have a old wire so I tried all the normal methods (piano style chain on a rope messenger etc..). All of my messengers got hung up on internal bits and pieces in the mast (winches, lines, deck plate, compression post entrance etc.). We ended up using the VHF coax (thick RG-8 stuff). Still had to cut the connector off the end and hold our breathe hauling (not pulling, hauling) the line through. Of course then I had to solder the new connection back to the VHF.

I strongly recommend a good tight flexible connection of old to new, then pull through. If you loose the old - it had to come out anyway and you can always fetch the new back out.
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Re: Running Wind Instrument Cable

so did you pull a messenger up the mast with the coax to get it run and then pull the coax/anemometer back down with it? If that's the case then maybe I have two chances of getting the new anemometer cable pulled through (one with the coax and one with the old anemometer cable). The coax looks to be as old as the anemometer; probably time to replace it too anyway. What sort of messenger did you use? Is small 1/8" cordage like messenger string for halyards OK or should it be heavier? What do you suggest for attaching to the wire or coax?

Last edited by KeelHaulin; 05-03-2013 at 03:02 PM.
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