The phone company has installed, throughout the house, shielded Cat 5
cable with 4 sets of wires. One is used for phone service, while each
of the other three is terminated with what looks like a plastic sleeve
imprinted Dolphin (just in case it makes a difference...).
I have a wi-fi broadband router on the second floor (physically
connected to two computers); I also have another computer in the ground
floor den which is currently wirelessly networked with the others. The
phone company's breakout box is in the basement, naturally.
For various reasons, I would like to physically network the first floor
computer. Ideally, I would like to install in the router room a wall
plate with an RJ45 jack, with a patch cord connecting to the router.
Currently, the Cat 5 terminates in a standard RJ11 jack. The same
would go for the ground floor den; there, however, the Cat 5 terminates
in a wall plate with a coax F-type jack at the top and a standard RJ11
at the bottom.
So that's the question - how do I approach a project like this? In
particular, how do I go about making sure that, while I go two floors
down and then one floor up, I am still connecting the same set of
wires to the appropriate terminals in the router room, the breakout box
and the den? What type of tools would I need to accomplish this?
IMO, the surest way, is to disconnect the wires from all equipment. Then go
to one end of any cable and jumper out two wires of that cable. Then go to
all the other ends and put an ohm meter on each cable until you find the one
you jumpered. Then mark both ends of that cable.
Just to be clear, TELCO and ETHERNET in the same cable can be problematic.
I have tried it and the results have been poor.
VERIFY the pairs everywhere. Especially at the outside terminal block.
The devil is in the terminations. I have seen poor terminations take a CAT 5
down so low it was worthless.
Black Box has an excellent catalog with lots of information on the types of
connectors, tools and color codes.
I repeat myself I WOULD NOT run both services in the same cable. Your house
Plan on spending at least $200 bucks for tools and terminals. Just to get
Thanks, SQL, advice and warning both well taken. It sounds like it
would be more effective (and maybe even cheaper) to have someone drop
Cat 5 from the second floor to the first and just disregard the phone
I agree. For most people, even if they've worked with LAN
termination equipment for years, will find it's too easy to make a
mistake in the wiring. You don't want to mix telco conductors with
your computer conductors as the results can range from bizzare to
catastrophic. Telephone wiring is not all low voltage. Do you
really want a 90 V. ring voltage accidently in contact with your
computer's LAN port?
Category 5, 5e, or even 6 wire is cheap. (You generally won't need
the shielded version unless you are in a high RF environment). Buy a
500 ft box and cable up your house as you need it.
While not optimum, I have to disagree. The best solution, of course, is
to run a new cable. However, running a phone line and ethernet in the
same cat5 jacket should present little or no problem IF DONE CORRECTLY.
I've done it many times for the sake of expediency and have never had a
problem. I've even added 12vdc on the 4th pair and still had no
problems. Just make absolutely sure your connections are done properly.
As for tools, www.mpja.com has a very extensive tool kit for $80 that
has more than you will ever need for maintaining the wiring in your home
(http://www.mpja.com/productview.asp?product 043+TL). While I use
better quality "pro" grade tools for regular use, I keep one of these
kits at my second home and another in the trunk of my car "just in
case." They do the job quite competently, are of decent quality and are
ideally suited to occassional users.
What you need: For upstairs and downstairs buy 2 Cat5 RJ45 ethernet
keystone jacks and 2 RJ12 keystone jacks (get 2 colors like blue for
data and black for phone; i.e. MPJA #11082TT & 7182TT), one keystone F
connector (Home Depot), & one 3 hole and one 2 hole keystone faceplate
(MPJA 5944TT & 5943TT). You'll also want to get 4 Scotchlok connectors
for the basement location (Home Depot).
How to do it (using only the tools in the kit): On the 1st flr look at
the phone jack and determine which wires are used for your phone line -
most likely the white/blue pair. The remaining 3 pairs should be just
left loose. You can cut off the "Dolphin" connectors on the other pairs
if you've determined that the wires aren't being used for any other
purpose. Connect the tone generator to one of the orange/white pairs (if
you have more than one pair after cutting the connectors) and turn it
on. Use the wand to locate that pair at the basement phone box. If it's
not loud and clear, go to the top floor location and see if it's loud
and clear at the jack (you may have loop wiring). Now do the same thing
but put the tone gen on the other white/orange pair. What we're trying
to do is see where each end of the cable goes from the first floor
location. If the cable goes to the second floor location then you don't
need to do anything in the basement. If not, repeat the procedure on the
second floor so you can identify the pairs from each location that go to
the basement. In the basement, match the conductor colors of the
white/orange pair and the white/green pairs and connect with the
Do your terminations with the new jacks at both locations upstairs and
check it all with the cable tester in the kit.
You can share the cable for 10baseT or 100baseT, but 1000baseT uses all
4 pairs, so there are no pairs left to share.
If the cable is at least cat3, it will support 10baseT. 100baseT requires
Is this cable home run from each jack to the terminal, or is it daisy chained
from one jack to another?
-- Welcome My Son, Welcome To The Machine --
Bob Vaughan | techie @ tantivy.net |
On Mon, 30 Jan 2006 02:38:30 +0000 (UTC), email@example.com
(Bob Vaughan) wrote:
and with 100baseT, it's more important to wire it right (for example,
receive uses 2 wires. pins 3&6 on a connector must be connected to
wires in the same pair). I discovered this when I converted a
functioning 10Mbps network to 100Mbps. The connection LEDs came on,
but no data was transferred. I needed some correctly wired cables.
Daisy chaining can work fine for phone. It won't for ethernet.
Back when the standard was established most phones, including those on a
PBX, were still analog. The switches themselves were digital but phones
were still analog. The digital cards and digital phones were showing up
"as needed" because they were still very expensive.
You could do a simple continuity check with a 9 volt battery, a couple
of leads with alligator clips on each end, and a cheap voltmeter - all
available at Radio Shack. Connect the battery to a pair of leads
downstairs and see whether you can read 9 volts upstairs.
But are you sure it is Cat 5? You said it's shielded - it seems very
odd that the phone company would install a) Cat 5, and b) that it would
be shielded. Could be but odd.
If the wire is indeed Cat5, be sure to make the splices as short as can
be, untwisting as little of the pairs as possible. The twist in Cat 5
pairs is important. And remember that pins 1 & 2 use one twisted pair,
pins 3 & 6 another, simple continuity with any old pair of wires is not
"But are you sure it is Cat 5? You said it's shielded - it seems very
odd that the phone company would install a) Cat 5, and b) that it would
be shielded. Could be but odd. "
I can only go by what I read on the outside jacket of the cable. It
does say "shielded" and it does say "Cat 5" (although not "5e" or
"5ENH"). I don't know if it answers the question of oddness, but the
last time the phone company (Verizon) was in the house, they installed
their fiber optic service (FIOS), replacing the cable company's
internet connction. (BTW, FIOS is excellent - rock solid 24/7; never
had a problem).
Anyway, as part of that, they also moved the residential phone service
coming into the house from the copper line to the fiber. They MAY have
also rewired the inside lines and installed this odd cable. Just a
A long time ago I remember seeing sheilded cat 5. There is one big
problem with sheilded. You can only ground 1 end not both. I've also
seen cable that is sheilded and looks like cat 5. The problem with
this stuff is the impedance of the cable is out of spec and will cause
all sorts of problems.
Linux Home Automation Neil Cherry firstname.lastname@example.org
http://www.linuxha.com/ Main site
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