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Old 12-11-2010, 07:17   #1
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GTO Wire for SSB

Hi,
I was wondering if anyone could tell me if it is possible to substitute the GTO cable that runs from the shroud antenna to the antenna tuner with a no. 6 stranded, insulated copper wire?
Any information would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 12-11-2010, 07:20   #2
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Better to stick with the GTO as it is designed for high voltage. The #6 does not have the right insulation for that.
You can get the GTO from a local sign shop that does neon signs or I got mine on EBay. Worth doing it right as SSB likes things done right and if you want a system to work like it should do it right. The GTO is not expensive.
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Old 12-11-2010, 07:37   #3
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I used #8 wire for 10 years without any problems--the insulation is plenty good enough as long as you are only using 150 watts to transmit. Someone gave me some extra GTO so I switched, but there was no change in performance.
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Old 12-11-2010, 07:48   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailvayu View Post
Better to stick with the GTO as it is designed for high voltage. The #6 does not have the right insulation for that.
You can get the GTO from a local sign shop that does neon signs or I got mine on EBay. Worth doing it right as SSB likes things done right and if you want a system to work like it should do it right. The GTO is not expensive.
We would prefer to stick with the GTO but being in Mexico it may prove very difficult to find it. We thought if we would use the no. 6 in a pinch we could change out to GTO when we get back to the states in another 6 months or so.
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Old 12-11-2010, 08:07   #5
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You can do that I would still check any local sign shops but the #6 will work till you get back just keep it off any grounded parts by a couple of inches. In other words do not wire tie it to the non insulated part of the shroud you are using. use stand offs
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Old 12-11-2010, 08:35   #6
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There's no need for #6, unless you want that particular outer diameter for some reason. #14 would be plenty heavy enough. Agree that the GTO is best because it has high-voltage insulation, but #14 or heavier will work fine as long as you keep your hands off it while transmitting, and keep it away from other conducting items.
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Old 12-11-2010, 10:26   #7
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Have you tried a Neon (Gas Tube) Sign Shop?

GTO stands for "Gas Tube Only."
It has insulation designed to withstand the high open circuit voltages present with luminous tube transformers. GTO-10 is for 10,000-volt and below applications. GTO-15 is used for 10,000- to 15,000-volt applications.
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Old 12-11-2010, 13:10   #8
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For a typical 100w - 150 w transceiver output, you are dealing with +/- 100volts on the feedline. Most folks use GTO because that's what the marketing tells you to use. It is fine for this purpose but certainly not a necessity.
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Old 12-11-2010, 13:27   #9
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Does anyone know of a line plug that works for GTO?
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Old 12-11-2010, 18:35   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S/V Illusion View Post
For a typical 100w - 150 w transceiver output, you are dealing with +/- 100volts on the feedline. Most folks use GTO because that's what the marketing tells you to use. It is fine for this purpose but certainly not a necessity.
This is not the feedline we are talking about. The feedline is the coax from transceiver to tuner. The wire that connects the tuner to the antenna is actually just part of the antenna. High voltage nodes of thousands of volts can exist on this wire which is why you should use high voltage wire if it is attatched to a grounded conductor or where people can easily come in contact with it. I have personally seen holes burnt, due to arcing, through standard 14 gauge 600 volt boat wire that was used for the antenna wire where it was strapped directly to a grounded lower backstay. Here is a caution statement from the very popular SGC-230 manual.

Eric


CAUTION:
Dangerous high voltages exist inside the Smartuner

when it is operated with an HF transmitter. High RF voltages in excess
of 10kv may be expected in normal operation of this unit. In addition
to shock hazard, these RF voltages may produce burns that are very
painful if you come in contact with exposed components. Therefore,
DO NOT operate without the cover secured in place unless you are a
well experienced radio technician or engineer.
As a matter of good installation and engineering practice, exposed
metal antenna elements should be located in such a manner as to
prevent accidental contact with people (especially young children),
pets, and small animals.


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Old 13-11-2010, 03:49   #11
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G'Day Jackie,

While the pukka GTO wire is best, if ya can't get it in Mexico and are worried about accidental contact or arcing, just get some small diameter vinyl tubing and thread it over the wire in exposed areas. Not as tidy, but it will work!

Cheers,

Jim
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