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How to shorten a TV cable

Updated February 21, 2017

A large amount of TV cable protruding from your television or wall can be unsightly and annoying. Luckily, shortening your TV cable, or coaxial cable, is a relatively simple process that you can do on your own at home. So before you call the cable repair person or put some random plant or piece of furniture in front of that coiled TV cable, grab a couple of tools and shorten it yourself.

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  1. Count the inches for your desired length of cable from one end of the cable that already has a connector on it. This keeps you from reattaching two connectors. Cut the cable with your wire or cable cutter at this desired point in length.

  2. Expose the inner, silver wire insulation by removing the plastic coating with the "outer" setting on the cable or wire cutters. Gently twist and pull the outer coating with the cutters until the inner wire is revealed. You will need about an inch of wire insulation for the next step and for attaching your connector.

  3. Use the "inner" setting on the cutters to strip down the silver wire insulation about a quarter of an inch and reveal the copper wire. Use the same gentle twisting and pulling technique as when you removed the outer plastic covering. Make sure you leave the white insulation around the copper wire and don't cut it off to expose only the bare copper wire.

  4. Put your F-connector over the copper wire and silver insulation wire to attach it to the cable. Depending on your type of connector, either screw it on or gently clamp it on with the upper "crimp" portion of your cutter. Just tighten the connector a little to secure it.

  5. Warning

    Make sure your TV cable is not connected to the wall or your television set before you do any work on it.

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Things You'll Need

  • Coaxial cable
  • Cable or wire cutters
  • Screw-on or crimp F-connectors

About the Author

Ally Tracy

Ally Tracy began writing in 1988. One of her poems, "A Kiss," was published in an edition of the "Norton Anthology," and her work includes numerous screenplays, short stories and children's stories. Tracy holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Southern California and a Master of Arts in psychology from Ryokan College.

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