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Technical Tips from Mark W. Persons

Grounding in a wooden equipment rack

If you have a wooden (non-conductive) equipment rack in an RF environment, you need to take special precautions.  Yes, rack rails are metal and should be good conductors.  However, they are paint-covered and often remain insulated from the equipment they support.  An excellent alternative is to screw a piece of wire-braid to the rear of the wood rack side and install jumper wires to the equipment as shown to the left.  It is quick and easy to do.  The results are worth the effort ten times over.

The wire-braid used here was removed from a piece of RG-8 coaxial cable.  The jumper wires are Belden 8723 two-pair shielded cable.  All five conductors were stripped bare and crimped into the terminals at each end.  I like to use jumpers that are insulated, as these are, so there is no chance of accidentally shorting something to ground that is not intended to go to ground.    

The stories go on and on.  Stop in again sometime.  I'll leave the soldering iron on for you. 
Mark W. Persons   ham W0MH      

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