dc voltage loss with fence

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by Rald, Feb 26, 2010.

  1. Rald

    Thread Starter New Member

    Feb 26, 2010
    I read something in an add for electric fence terminators that didn't seem completely accurate and I am hoping to get a peer reviewed check before I spend the extra cash.

    I have a dc electric fence charger for my polywire fence that is set-up with an earth return/ground system. Are there significant voltage losses associated with splicing or using a knot to join (or terminate) wire compared to using a connector designed for such purpose? I understand that the knots/splices decrease the strength of wire, but I did not think that they significantly contributed to voltage loss or to current drain.

    Thanks for any insights.
  2. Wendy


    Mar 24, 2008
    The distance for the ground path will affect the fence strength, but I don't see how splices would.

    Care to point to the link that make any claims like this?
  3. someonesdad

    Senior Member

    Jul 7, 2009
    The currents at the high voltage should be pretty small, so voltage drops are going to be correspondingly small. If you're worried about joint resistance, solder the wire if you can (if it's a galvanized steel wire, it should solder just fine after making the mechanical joint). If you're getting too much voltage loss, then you may have too much current because of leakage through the insulators.

    I tend to prefer crimped joints for outdoor stuff. I have some Starrett compound leverage wire cutters with removable jaws that I grind flat and use for crushing things. This lets me make strong mechanical joints with some aluminum duck decoy fittings I found years ago (boxes of 100 for 25 cents -- a good deal). I use these with 3/32 wire rope and turnbuckles for various things (last use was securing the daughter's tree house in the tree). For your application, I'd consider cutting some appropriately-sized copper tubing, putting the wires in, then crimping. Soldering would put icing on the cake. If you don't have suitable pliers, just pound the tubing flat with a hammer; back it up with a hefty chunk of steel. No need to buy any special connectors.
  4. Rald

    Thread Starter New Member

    Feb 26, 2010
    Thanks very much for the info and practical/cost saving tips. I did not save the add that recommended a certain connector to reduce arcing and voltage loss. A change in the exact phrase used in a Google search brings different hits to the top - I probably phrased my search differently this time around.