22 gauge wire

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by taylor_up_bnsf, Nov 20, 2008.

  1. taylor_up_bnsf

    taylor_up_bnsf taylor_up_bnsf

    Does anyone know where I can get this size of wire?
  2. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    I would think that Lowes or Home Depot would have it.....
  3. Jim Krause

    Jim Krause Active Member

    Seems to me that I saw some at Radio Shack
  4. iis612

    iis612 Member

    Home Depot and Menards have it, but they do not stock solid wire in this guage. Unless you don't have any issues with using stranded wire, I would try Radio Shack, or on a long shot, if you have a Circuit City nearby, try them. Since they are closing stores alot of their stuff is dirt cheap. However, they may not have solid wire either.

  5. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    Radio Shack has both stranded & solid....
  6. tetters

    tetters Rail Spiking Fool!

    The only place I have come across solid 22 gauge wire only at work. Around here we use it to wire up cctv systems and access control hardware. Thus whenever a job is done, there is plenty left over for me to rescue from the dumpster. Because that is where it will usually end up.

    I'm sure its available somewhere. When all else fails try shopping on-line.
  7. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Go with the stranded anyway... Easier to work with, more forgiving when routing through tight spots and when stripping insulation (a tiny nick might break one or two strands, wheras on solid wire, you may break the entire wire and have to start again).

    Don't ask how I know this... hamr ;)

  8. tetters

    tetters Rail Spiking Fool!

    Andrew is right. I meant to mention that as well. Solid is a pain in the butt to strip and most often just breaks. Plus if you've solder a connection and start to move it around too much it breaks.

    ...and like Andrew....Don't ask how I know that! wall1
  9. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    what gauge is telephone wire?

    That is usually solid wire, though.
  10. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

    You can also salvage larger gauge wire that is made of spiraled strands of solid wire. When you strip out the strands, you have many lengths of 22 ga wire.

    All depends on how you feel about it personally, I guess, plus the advantages and disadvantages mentioned by those more knowledgable than I.

    I would add only one thing - if you are set on 22 ga solid wire, try an electrical supply store that caters to contractors.
  11. YmeBP

    YmeBP Member

    I've gotten solid wire at homedepot, and my local hardware store (true value and do it best), however i'd suggest you try and find a local irrigation company (anyone that installs underground sprinkler systems) these guys have miles of remnant solid copper wire that they will usually give you a good deal on. I got 100 feet of 8 conductor 22 gauge (they use 22 and 24 sometimes) remanants 1x 75ft and 1 x 25 feet for about 20$. Doing some quick math that is 800ft of solid copper wire for 20$ :).
  12. Fluesheet

    Fluesheet Member

    I'll grant the more flexible comment, but I actually prefer the solid - for track feeders anyway. You can squish the wire end flat and bend it parallel to the track base - makes it stay in place well while soldering and keeps the profile low.

  13. YmeBP

    YmeBP Member

    Coming from a not so seasoned modeler, i've had much better luck w/ the solid stuff. It's much eaiser to solder, it holds a little better and i've had more luck with it not breaking. You can also use the little taps that don't require soldering.

    Oh and you can also pick up Ethernet cables cheap at surplus shops and network wiring companies. Ethernet cable is 24 or 26 gauge solid stranded wire, there are 4 pairs of solid copper wire in cat 5e cable.
  14. TCH

    TCH Member

    just curious

    why do you need 22 gauge specifically ?
  15. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I don't know his specific reasons, but for modelers who are going with dcc, 22 ga is the minimum required for drop wires, and larger ga wire is harder to hide when you solder it to your rails to make drops.
  16. sgtcarl

    sgtcarl Member

    I hate when I drop things. :curse:
  17. taylor_up_bnsf

    taylor_up_bnsf taylor_up_bnsf

    Im using it for feeders from my 14 gauge bus.
  18. TCH

    TCH Member

    I don`t want to hijack this thread but I have a question regarding wire.

    would using 2 strands of solid telephone wire be suitable as feeder wires.

    I have used fairly small gauge hookup wire as feeders on some spurs and they seem to work OK.
  19. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Are you doing dc or dcc? In dc the telephone wire will work, but for dcc you need a larger gauge. I'm not sure, but I think 2 strands of telephone wire would be as good as a 22 ga wire, but it might be more bulky particularly where it is soldered to the rail.
  20. YmeBP

    YmeBP Member

    Not sure if you can use 2 separate strands for dcc if they aren't twisted properly you may have an issue w/ cross talk, this is why telephone wire is twisted (you may have seen UTP for unshielded twisted pair) the frequency of the twists affects how the cables handle cross talk.

    My suggestion for dcc would be to look for 22awg wire at any of the places suggested above. I have a decent sized dcc layout i used 22awg solid wire and even though i haven't cleaned the track in a year i can still run my trains :).

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