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Author Topic: Liquid electrical tape - worth a try ?  (Read 14314 times)
KQ6Q
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Posts: 991




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« on: July 21, 2012, 09:40:18 PM »

While browsing at Home Depot today, I ran across a product called Liquid Electrical Tape.
I have a lot of PL-259 type connections in my rooftop antenna farm - has anyone tried
this product ? I've been using CoaxSeal, but it's a mess to remove after a few years in the sun.
Would this be better, or worse ?
Comments please!

Fred, KQ6Q
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K1CJS
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« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2012, 06:00:21 AM »

Liquid electrical tape does do a better job of sealing connectors, but can be just as bad if not worse than coax seal--right from the get-go.  What is recommended by quite a lot of hams is a layer of quality electrical tape, not the cheap stuff, then a layer of cloth based tape--what used to be called friction tape.  The electrical tape seals the connection, the friction tape prevents the electrical tape from drying out and/or coming undone.
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KQ6Q
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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2012, 09:11:31 PM »

Thank you! I also noticed plastic electrical tape in a variety of colors - but if I'm covering it with friction tape - haven't used that in years - it doesn't matter a lot what color the plastic tape is. The sun out here is fierce - I have some counterpoise wires made with speaker wire with clear insulation - which was clear, is now dark brown!
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N6DZR
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« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2012, 12:35:35 PM »

I gave up on coax seal because it was too messy. Sometimes I use liquid electrical tape, but usually for things like crimped connectors on wire antennas and such. For coax I have switched to 3M Temflex splicing tape (model 2155). This provides the weather seal. Then I cover it with 3M Super 33+ electrical tape for sun protection. This combination has worked well and is easy to cut open and peel off if needed. I get both of these products from the local Home Depot.

-Jeff
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AG6WT
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« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2012, 02:53:18 PM »

I use 3M super 33+. I start with a winding around the coax below the connector then flip the tape roll over and wind over the connector with the adhesive side out (i.e. the tape is not sticking to the connector). Keep winding until you get to the other side of the connector. Then flip the tape roll over (sticky side down) and continue winding tape back down to where you originally started. When you get to the end, cut the tape, don't tear it by pulling, then repeatedly squeeze the tape to seal it all up. It's an effective and fairly durable seal. To remove it, slice it with a utility knife and peel it off. Since the inner winding is facing away from the coax and connector, it won't be all gummed up with adhesive.

Liquid tape works well also but it is not as easy to remove as the tape. But it is much, much cleaner than Coax Seal!
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KI6NQT
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« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2012, 07:22:16 PM »

Tried the liquid tape and did not last long before the sun and weather destroyed it.  Use rubberized stretch tape, it is great.
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WB6BYU
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« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2012, 08:03:19 PM »

I use Liquid Electrical Tape for connections that I can't wrap with the rubberized
tape.  Make sure you stir it well first, otherwise the first connection will be very
well sealed and the rest barely at all.

But the stretchy  rubberized tape is what I use almost exclusively now - I did a
couple joints in the rain on Field Day.  There are a number of varieties, including
silicon-based "Rescue Tape".  They should have some at Home Depot beside the
regular electrical tape.
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K1CJS
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« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2012, 06:49:27 AM »

There is also self-sealing silicone based tape on the market.  That stuff works well too, and you do have to cut it off the connections you have it wrapped on since it seals to itself.  I don't think its as messy as coax seal, but it does do a comparible job.
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W1EL
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« Reply #8 on: July 25, 2012, 10:25:17 AM »

A single layer of Scotch 33 or 88 over the connector before putting on the coaxseal or rubber tape will make removal a lot easier. At work we use the barrier layer, rubber tape x 2 layers, then 2 layers of 33 or 88 on the outside. I can't recall the last time we had water inside.

GL from Maine!
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W1NK
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« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2012, 10:56:25 AM »

I've used the liquid tape on exposed solder connections like a radial ring or the crimped lugs on my radial plate.

A year (?) or so age there was an article in NCJ in which coax connectors were first wrapped with "mil-spec" PTFE (plumber's tape), then a double layer of Scotch 33+, and finally a layer of the Scotch rubberized tape.  This was done on PL259-barrel connector-PL259 junctions.

W1NK
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W0FM
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« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2012, 03:05:23 PM »

My experience with the Liquid Electrical Tape has led me to limit my use of it to rather low voltage, non-critical applications.  The brand I used (name escapes me) turned out to brush on very thinly, even after much stirring.  Eventually, I got in the habit of putting on a light coat and letting it fully dry before adding 2 or 3 more coats.  After two coats, I could still see through the color (I've tried black, white and red) to the actual metal in the connection.  I'm sure the can must have a voltage rating on it, but I wouldn't take the chance.

I pretty much only use it on connections in which I cannot get a good tape wrap.

73,

Terry, WØFM
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AC4RD
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« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2012, 09:23:50 AM »

Just MHO, but check out the "raincoat tape" sold by High Sierra Online.  The stuff makes a FANTASTIC seal, and it comes off cleanly when you need it to.  (In fact, if you peel it off carefully, you can re-use it multiple times.)  I've been using it for a few months and it's GREAT stuff for all sorts of connections.  No idea how long it will last in the weather, but it looks and works great after 3 months in the North Carolina sun and rain.  No adhesive--it's a silicone that sticks to itself; available in lots of different colors.  This "raincoat tape" is GREAT, and at a pretty reasonable price!  Smiley
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W0FM
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« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2012, 11:25:41 AM »

"Raincoat Tape" sounds very similar to "Rescue Tape" which is a very nice and versatile product that I use in the car, on the boat and at home.  Might be the same with a different name.

Terry, WØFM
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W0FM
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« Reply #13 on: August 16, 2012, 11:30:55 AM »

Same stuff.  Google "Rescue Tape" then "Raincoat Tape".   
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AC4RD
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« Reply #14 on: August 17, 2012, 09:07:11 AM »

Same stuff.  Google "Rescue Tape" then "Raincoat Tape".   

Thanks, Terry--I hadn't heard of "rescue tape" before! 
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