How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors

Written by preston manning bernstein
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How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
Ethernet cables are very simple to construct. (ethernet cable 2 image by BlueMiniu from Fotolia.com)

Many people would be surprised at how easy it is to wire their own Ethernet cables and connectors at home. All you need is a basic knowledge of the insides of an Ethernet cable, what types of Ethernet cables and jacks are out there, and how to use a small assortment of tools. The materials needed to construct an Ethernet cable are readily available at many computer stores or electrical or home centres. This article explains how to wire an Ethernet cable at home.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Ethernet Cable -- bulk Category (Cat) 5, 5e, 6, 6a or higher
  • Wire cutters
  • RJ45 Plugs
  • 110 Punch Down Tool

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Instructions

  1. 1

    There are eight colour-coded wires within an Ethernet cable. These wires are twisted into four pairs of wires, with each pair having a common colour theme. These twists are extremely important, as they counteract noise and interference. It is important to wire according to standard in order to get proper performance. There are many standards when it comes to wiring, but straight-through is the most supported of them all.

    How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
    There are many different ways to wire an Ethernet cable. (ethernet connections image by TekinT from Fotolia.com)
  2. 2

    RJ45 plugs are 8-position modular connectors that look like a widened phone plug. These plugs come in a variety of styles, and it is important to know which one you will be using. RJ45 jacks are designed to only work with solid Ethernet cables. Also, most jacks are designed for either T568A, T568B, or both. Make sure you end up with the correct one.

    How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
    Make sure your choice is for the correct jack. (ethernet image by Emmanuel Bergère from Fotolia.com)
  3. 3

    Generally, all fixed wiring should be run as straight through. This is the most versatile, since many Ethernet interfaces can cross and uncross automatically as needed.

    How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
    Straight-through Ethernet cables are the most versatile type of cable. (ethernet cable 2 image by BlueMiniu from Fotolia.com)
  1. 1

    Measure out the length of the Ethernet cable you wish to make. Make sure to make it longer than the length desired.

    How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
    Decide how long you wish to make your Ethernet cable. (ethernet cable image by .shock from Fotolia.com)
  2. 2

    At one end, cut the wire to length. Leave enough length so you have enough material to work with, but not too much.

    How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
    Cut the wire a little longer than the distance you need. (to cut image by Anton Gvozdikov from Fotolia.com)
  3. 3

    Strip the plastic off about 2 inches of the end of the Ethernet cable.

    How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
    Cut off the plastic on the end of the cable to give yourself access to the wires inside. (scissor cut image by Jakub Cejpek from Fotolia.com)
  4. 4

    Align each of the coloured wires according to how the jack is laid out. Insert each wire into the jack using the punch down tool.

    How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
    Make sure you match the colours to their correct spot. (wire image by Dmitri MIkitenko from Fotolia.com)
  5. 5

    Repeat the above steps for the second RJ45 jack.

    How to Wire Your Own Ethernet Cables & Connectors
    Your cable should look like this when completed. (ethernet image by Jaume Felipe from Fotolia.com)

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