Strip copper cable

When stripping copper cables, a distinction must be made according to the reasons for stripping. Accordingly, there are tools and machines with which a copper cable can be stripped or peeled.

General information about copper cables

Copper cables are one of the most commonly used metal wires. Copper wire has a very high electrical conductivity, which is why it is used so intensively. In addition there is an equally high thermal conductivity (four times as high as steel). However, the copper wire or strand (copper wire twisted from many small wires) is used in isolation, that is, with a jacket of, for example, PVC or silicone (more heat-resistant).

Copper cable as a source of raw materials

The enormous demand for copper also ensures a relatively high price of copper. In 2010, one kilo of copper cost up to $ 10. But even just before, when the copper price was around $ 2.70 a kilo, it was a worthwhile business to return copper to the utility cycle. In the middle of 2016, the price was again commuted to the $ 5 a kilo. This means that copper is stripped for a variety of reasons:

  • stripping for wiring or soldering
  • Stripping or peeling for copper recovery

Strip wire for wiring and soldering

For stripping copper cables, you can use a conventional insulation pliers. Insulate only as much copper wire as you actually need. Especially with already laid copper cables whose length is fixed, you can not strip as long as you like.

Depending on the application, for example soldering the copper cable or press-bonding, it is better to insulate too little than too much. If you need more stripped copper cable, you can do it step by step.

Especially to consider when soldering copper wire

Please note in addition that not every copper cable may be soldered. In the house installation, soldering is no longer permitted according to VDE.

Stripping or peeling the copper cable for recovery

Of course, if you have the opportunity to collect copper cables to sell to a metal dealer, you will also need to strip the cables. But you will not get far with conventional stripping pliers. Depending on the quantity, you can therefore use machine stripping devices. Here, a distinction is made between manually and electrically operated peeling machines.

Machines for peeling or squeezing copper cables

You also have to differentiate according to the stripping technique. There are devices with one or two fixed blades, as well as roller devices in which the copper wire is pressed and the insulation is broken. The latter method is particularly suitable for thin copper cables.

At the front sits on most machines usually a metal profile with different sized holes for the different cable thicknesses. The blade behind it is adjustable and must be adjusted according to the cable thickness.

Prices, service lives and wear

Then the insulation is cut or peeled. Manual devices are already available from around 50 euros, for electric cable peelers with large throughputs, prices range from the upper three-digit to the four-digit euro range. Rollers that break the insulation have virtually no wear, however, the life of the blades are of course limited and also to renew regularly.

Tips & Tricks

It makes perfect sense to collect cable remnants over a long period of time and then isolate them according to their strengths. Then the use of a cable peeler makes sense.

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