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Author Topic: 5/32 guy cable - what to cut it with  (Read 409 times)
N9CM
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Posts: 2103




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« on: October 04, 2019, 12:32:17 PM »

What would be a good tool to cut some steel cable (have 250 ft and only need 150)?  Don't want to end up with a frazzled end on the cable.
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WA7ARK
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Posts: 741




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« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2019, 01:25:47 PM »

I wind bare-steel wire (aircraft safety wire) on either side of the cut beforehand, and then use my die-grinder with a very thin cut-off wheel.
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Mike, WA7ARK
N9CM
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« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2019, 01:30:41 PM »

Well, don't have that..have dikes, saw, saw zaw, snips, all seem pretty lame when cutting it...once cut, what is good to "seal" the cut end so it doesn't frizzle out?
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WA7ARK
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Posts: 741




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« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2019, 01:36:50 PM »

My MIG welder... Grin

For cutting, a vise and a hack-saw with really fine teeth..., after wrapping the cut site with electrical tape.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2019, 01:39:18 PM by WA7ARK » Logged

Mike, WA7ARK
KM1H
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Posts: 5517




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« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2019, 03:06:38 PM »

Ive used electrical and duct tape over the uncut wire since the 60's and my first guyed tower. When finished seal the ends with Rustoleum or similar.

In the Navy they used White Lead over all the ships guy/support wires
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KD0ZGW
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« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2019, 03:31:52 PM »

"very thin cut-off wheel" - be very careful with these.  they can fracture and throw shrapnel.  I wrap it and use a hack saw.
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KM1H
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« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2019, 03:45:57 PM »

Quote
"very thin cut-off wheel" - be very careful with these.  they can fracture and throw shrapnel.  I wrap it and use a hack saw.

Agree. Those Chinese things and wheels turn at 10000 rpm. I cringe behind a welders apron and clear vision helmet every time I have to use it.

For guy wire I mostly use a vintage USA made, man size  2 handed 24" cable cutter, since most all guys here are 1/4" EHS and not the wimpy 3/16".
I'll also use a 9 Amp Milwaukee Sawzall (about 30 years old by now) with a very fine tooth bimetal blade and a thread lubricant.

Carl
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K3GM
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« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2019, 03:53:49 PM »

A right angle die grinder with a cut off wheel works well.  Also, in a pinch, a cold chisel, mallet, and an anvil will do the job.
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KL7CW
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Posts: 604




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« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2019, 04:13:02 PM »

After years of cutting guy cable with a cold chisel on a block of iron, I bought a cable cutter from an industrial hardware store.  You put your cable under the cutter and bang the top part with a sledge hammer.  Works OK, however it is always a 5 minute struggle to get the blade to retract so you can remove your cable, and the cut is not super clean.  You could try cutting the cable with a dremmel tool and a good blade.  Wear eye protection, do not get in the line with the cutting blade and do not go too crazy with a high RPM speed.  I have not tried the dremmel too for cable cutting, but if you buy one, I am sure you will use it at least once every month.  In the last few days I used it to cut square holes in a chassis, to cut circuit board traces which were not wanted, to remove various lock shackles, and for many home projects.  A package of carbide cutoff wheels does not cost too much, so if you break one, which will happen if you sneeze, it is not a problem.  Just a thought which I have not tried, how about coating the cable in the vicinity of where your cut will be and coat it in something like epoxy.  Then do the cut.  It might work, but might gum up your cut off wheel.       Good luck,  KL7CW
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KD9INX
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« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2019, 07:32:06 PM »

I apply a heavy duty 2” wide heavy electrical type tape, with several wraps, that gives you 2 to three inches with overlaps, with the target cut line in the center of the wrap, cutting clear through it all. You can pick one up at the big box store, and for light duty jobs, the cheap angle grinder that uses 4 1/2” blades will work. Buy the good blades, like Pferd, Milwaukee, Dewalt, Norton , Slicer,  don’t go cheap on blades. If you need experience handling one, use a 1/4” grinding disk , and get the feel, grinding scrap metal, to see how it pulls on both sides. This is a valuable tool, that’s why I go into detail on it. I use a inverter on my truck to make cut offs on bolts, tower legs, etc, where no power close by. Great tool, however!!!
  This tool is dangerous, if not careful. I wear safety glasses, face visor, cotton pants, and jean jacket, plus gloves, frequently a hard hat too. The .045 thin cut off blades cut nicely, but any blade can shatter, and the guard helps , but won’t stop it all. Never run a grinder without a guard, Protective equipment, and toss any damaged blades. Don’t keep using them. Watch where your sparks go, and no bystanders or kids around
    I have a corded and cordless portable bandsaw, but the angle grinder is best, and quickest for me. I have cut lots of guy wire, galv. cable, and suspension bridge type wire rope. After reading all my post, I was going to delete it, and just ask you to find a friend to cut them for you, but maybe it will help somebody else. Sorry, didn’t want to turn you into a steel fabricator.
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W9FIB
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« Reply #10 on: October 07, 2019, 08:37:08 PM »

I use my cutting/welding torch. Cuts the cable and melts the end so it doesn't fray.
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73, Stan
Wisdom is knowledge you gain after you know it all.
K0UA
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Posts: 4801




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« Reply #11 on: October 07, 2019, 08:45:43 PM »

I use my cutting/welding torch. Cuts the cable and melts the end so it doesn't fray.

Yep.  "smoke wrench". 
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73  James K0UA
ARRL Missouri Technical Specialist
N5CM
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Posts: 311




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« Reply #12 on: October 08, 2019, 11:28:08 AM »

In times past, I've wrapped some steel wire around both side of the cut and used some heavy lineman's pliers to cut stranded guy cable.  Worked OK for me.
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N4MQ
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Posts: 352




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« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2019, 04:32:30 AM »

I use heat shrink to protect me and the cable ends. Woody
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N1CX
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Posts: 174




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« Reply #14 on: October 12, 2019, 05:19:37 PM »

I cut it with my teeth. Dentist loves me.

lol

a small pair of bolt cutters.
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