How to terminate fiber optic cable

Written by wanda thibodeaux
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Fibre optic cables are being used in an increasing number of applications, especially in networking for computers and cable/internet. Preparing these cables, however, takes time, and one of the biggest steps in preparing a fibre optic cable is cable termination. Learning how to terminate fibre optic cable can allow a person to modify his own network or devices or find a job within the technical or telecommunications industries.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Fibre optic cable
  • Cable stripper
  • Epoxy
  • Cable crimper
  • Curing holder
  • Curing oven
  • Fibre cleaver
  • 5-15 micron film
  • 5 micron aluminium oxide film
  • 3-6 micron diamond film
  • 1 micron diamond film
  • HX film

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  1. 1

    Strip the end of the cable down with the cable stripper.

  2. 2

    Inject epoxy into the connector ferrule.

  3. 3

    Insert the fibre optic cable into the connector wall. The bare core of the wire should protrude about 1/2 an inch from the ferrule front.

  4. 4

    Crimp the cable with the cable crimper. This makes the connection between the connector and the jacket secure.

  5. 5

    Place the cable in the curing holder. The connector should face downward.

  6. 6

    Cure the cable in the curing oven.

  7. 7

    Cleave the fibre with the fibre cleaver. Get as close to the ferrule tip as you can.

  8. 8

    Polish the tip of the cable using the 5-15 micron film, 5 micron aluminium oxide film, 3-6 micron diamond film, 1 micron diamond film, and HX film in order. You essentially are sanding down the cable tip.

Tips and warnings

  • When you strip and crimp the cable, make sure you dispose of the trimmed-off cable properly. Even though the cables are very tiny, this is what makes them dangerous if inhaled or if they get under the skin--it is similar to fibreglass in that regard. You may want to wear a mask while working and wear a pair of gloves.

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