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Installing A Home-Run Revised
Second edition 01/2002
This reissue has the following changes.
1. Removal of the goof proof wiring method. This has resulted in troubles for Cayman users.
2. Addition of solutions using the Seicor indoor splitter for condo and apartment environments.
3. Links to photographs and diagrams to clarify installation methods.
Comments reference this document can be e-mailed to the author at Splitpair@adsl4me.net
Installing a home run with an ADSL splitter eliminates many of the "what if's" involved with troubleshooting an ADSL line. The home run itself insures that you have a clean path for the ADSL signal from the splitter to your ADSL modem. The splitter isolates all of the pre-existing IW (inside wiring) and CPE (customer premise equipment) from the ADSL signal and prevents any interference to the ADSL signal that could be caused by the CPE or undetected problems in the pre-existing IW.
The actual task of installing the home run / splitter combo, in most cases, is a straightforward simple job (at least for those of us who do it for a living and have the experience and tools needed). As for the rest of ya, that's what this guide is all about.
Before starting the actual installation, let's go over some of the tools and materials you will need to install your home run.
To begin with, you should have a basic set of hand tools that includes a minimum of the following:
1. Safety glasses.
2. 3/16 inch flat-blade screwdriver.
3. 1/4 inch flat-blade screwdriver.
4. Side cutters or combo cutters and strippers designed to work with 24 gauge solid copper wire.
5. A pair of standard pliers.
g6. Claw hammer.
In addition to the above you may need the following power tools and accessories:
1. 3/8 inch hammer-drill (a battery powered drill is a plus).
2. 3/16 inch x 4 inch masonry bit.
3. 5/16 inch x 18-inch masonry bit. Note: If your home construction is wood frame or is a pre-fab building
substitute a 3/8 inch combo-wood bit for the masonry bit.
4. If home is pre-fab or trailer add a couple of 7/64-inch high-speed steel drill bits. Note: If you're real good with hand tools an awl makes a much better pilot hole than a drill bit in a metal wall.
5. While not a power tool, you will need a six-foot stepladder for a ring run or attic access.
6. If youre planning to use an existing IW for your home you will need a way to trace out the correct IW one easy and inexpensive way to do this is with a battery-powered buzzer. See the end of this document for a parts list and description on making this device.
The materials needed:
1. An ADSL splitter.
2. A roll of CAT3 or CAT5 two or more pair cable long enough to do the job, this cable hereinafter will be referred to as IW.
3. 1/4 inch galvanized wire straps.
Note: Black plastic UV (ultra violet) resistant straps may be used but will not last as long as metal straps, (plus the plastic straps have a nasty tendency to pull loose from the mounting screws over time). If using plastic straps do not use the clear, white or translucent straps, as the sun's ultraviolet light will quickly break down that type of strap.
4. A box of 1/2 or 5/8 inch drive rings.
5. A tube of Dap sealant.
6. A box of Scotchlok UR
7. A phone jack. Note: You may want to buy a two port jack
using one port for your ADSL line and the other for your dialup line. If installing a wall mounted jack, purchase a plastic back box
for the jack as it is a real labor saver. If installing a wall mounted jack without a back box, add a drywall saw to your shopping list.
8. 2 number 10 x 1 1/4-inch pan head sheet metal screws for mounting the splitter. If you intend to mount the splitter on a masonry wall, add 2 number 10-12 plastic anchors and a 1/4-inch masonry drill bit to your shopping list.
9. 10 number 6 x 1-inch pan head sheet metal screws.
10. If your home is of block construction, add 10 plastic anchors for number 6 - 8 screws to your shopping list. Be sure to buy the type that work with a 3/16-inch masonry drill bit.
11. A couple feet of 1/8-inch electricians fishtape
or a stout wire coat hanger.
12. A bag of 8 inch black UV resistant Ty-Raps.
* Not required for an attic run.
If doing a basement or an attic run, add the following:
1. An old pair of pants and a long sleeve shirt.
2. Particle mask.
3. A pair of disposable cover all's.
5. A real good flashlight.
6. At least two pieces of 1/8 inch fishtape one 5 feet and another 15 feet in length.
Planning the installation:
First you will need to determine the general area where you would like the ADSL jack to be installed and then, depending on the construction of your home, you can decide exactly where the ADSL jack will be installed. There are many factors that will determine the final location of your ADSL jack with the primary one being how many roadblocks are between the NID (network interface device) and the desired jack location and how many of those roadblocks you are willing and able to overcome.
There are three practical ways to get an IW from a NID to your modem.
1. An outside of the home wire run aka the ring run.
2. Through the attic.
3. Through the basement or under a pre-fab home.
Let's start with one of the simplest jobs; a "ring-run". That is an IW run on the outside of a building from the NID to a jack, which will be installed on an exterior wall of a room.
Before starting the work, survey the exterior walls of your home to determine how and where you are going to run the IW from the NID to the desired ADSL jack location. Plants and bushes (especially those with thorns) can become roadblocks, as well as screen enclosures and storage sheds. Where aesthetics are of a primary concern, always consider running the wire along the sides and back of your home, away from the street or doing an attic / basement run.
Once you have decided where you will install your ADSL jack, the first thing you need to do is drill a hole
through the wall of your home for the IW.
Before starting this task, check the area where you intend to drill this hole very carefully, both inside and outside your home. Be sure to watch out for anything that might present a hazard such as water, sewer and gas pipes, electrical wires and conduit, cable TV lines and so forth.
If you're installing a wall mounted jack at outlet height, measure the distance from the floor to the center of one of the electrical outlets in the room that the jack will be installed in. Then make a small mark at that height on the wall where the ADSL jack is to be installed. This is where the hole to the outside will be drilled. This step can be skipped for a baseboard jack.
Working from inside the room, using a drill with the correct bit drill a hole either at the top edge of the baseboard or where the wall is marked. The hole should be drilled at approximately a 15-degree downward tilt toward the outside of the wall. The reason for this is to prevent water from tracking inside the home along the wire.
If you're installing a baseboard jack jump to Fishing the IW.
If installing a wall mounted jack using a back box, place the box on the wall, centered over the hole. Using a pencil, mark the location of the mounting holes on the walls. Then (with a masonry drill bit) drill two 3/16 inch holes in the wall on the marks, insert two plastic anchors and move to the next step.
If installing a wall mounted jack without a back box. Using a pencil and the mounting ring for the jack as a template
, center the mounting ring on the hole you drilled and mark out the center of the of the ring and the mounting holes for the ring and for the jack. Using a drywall saw, carefully cut out the opening for the jack.
Using a drill with a 3/16 inch masonry bit, drill four 3/16 inch holes in the wall on the marks, insert two plastic anchors in the holes for the mounting ring only and move to the next step.
Fishing the IW:
Now place a short fishtape into the hole through the wall and "fish" it through to the outside. Be sure to place a bend or kink in the fishtape to prevent it from being pulled too far outside.
Installing the drive rings:
There are two popular ways of installing the drive rings for a ring-run. One camp installs them under the eave on the buildings wall the other prefers to install them under the eave next to the fascia board. I'm a member of the second camp. Why? Installing the drive rings under the eve next to the fascia board hides the wire better and allows for 45-degree bends in the wire where it goes around a corner. The downside to this method is you can get really filthy as all kinds of crap (in some cases literally) shakes out of the eave.
The drive rings should be installed every three feet on straight runs and no more than twelve inches from a corner. It's best to install the drive rings where they are nailed through the eave into a roof truss.
Usually the trusses can be seen though the attic vents or the nails in the eave can be used as guides. There are two ways of running wire around the corners of the building. If your drive rings are installed against the fascia board, use two rings spaced between six and twelve inches from the corner. Do not install a ring at the corner. By using this method, your IW will make two 45-degree bends instead of one 90-degree bend at a corner. The other method is when the drive rings are installed on the building's wall. In this case, you need to apply at least two layers of friction tape or four to six layers of standard electrical tape to the IW where it will contact the corner of the building. In lieu of taping the IW, a short section of
plastic tubing can be slipped over the IW to provide the same level of protection.
Running the IW:
To conserve time and labor you should pull in your IW working from the NID to the jack location as you install the drive rings. When running on the buildings wall, always keep the IW behind other cables and pipes, if possible, without pinching the IW. Avoid running parallel to PVC (plastic) electrical conduit or romex. If that is not possible, maintain at least 12 inches of clearance for the entire run. Though it may be temptingly easy, do not Ty-Rap or fasten the IW to any type of electrical conduit or fixture.
Now that you have the IW run, it's time to trim it out at the jack.
Start by stripping off approximately eight inches of the IW's jacket and conductor insulation. Apply a couple of wraps of plastic electrical tape where the jacket is cut off to prevent snagging and then loop the bare conductors through the fishtape, fold the conductors back and twist them around themselves a few times.
From the inside of your home carefully pull the fishtape and IW through the wall until you have a couple of feet of IW inside the house. Do not pull the IW tight. Cut the IW off the fishtape.
Mounting the jacks:
Wall mounted jacks:
Route the IW through the hole in the back box or center of the mounting ring.
Using two number 6 x 1 inch screws fasten the back box or mounting ring in place.
Remove the appropriate knockout from the base of the jack, route the IW
so it will not be damaged and fasten the base of the jack to the baseboard with two number 6 x 1 inch screws.
An alternative is to mount the jack just above the baseboard using expandable anchors.
Wiring the jacks:
Very carefully strip off eight inches of the IW's jacket and then separate the four pairs, but do not untwist the individual wires that make up the pairs.
How the IW will be connected to your ADSL jack is dependent on the following variables.
Single port jack ADSL line only:
Single port jack ADSL line only crossover / line swapped.
Connecting the IW to the jacks:
Before starting to work with the Scotchlok connectors, read the instructions on the carton! Once the connector is closed it is not reusable and as they are not cheap you will want to get it right the first time.
If installing a wall jack you will only be using one or two pairs at this time wrap the other pairs back around the jacket to prevent any un-intentional shorts before moving to the next step.
Take one of the pairs from your IW and one of the pairs from your jack, give them a couple of twists then cut the ends flush.
Following the color code above, insert the individual wires into the Scotchlok connectors one wire per channel.
Make sure that the wires are fully inserted into the connector (visible through the clear side of the connector) and close the connector with your pliers. Repeat these steps until all your wires are connected.
If using a wall jack, carefully push the excess IW into the outer areas of the back box or into the hollow space between the drywall and the outside wall of the home. Place the jack into the mounting ring and fasten it in place with the supplied screws.
If installing a baseboard jack, wrap the excess wire around the mounting post on the base of the assembly.
Then carefully close up the jack being sure that the connectors are on the side away from the jack and none of the wires will be pinched between the mounting post and the jack cover. Tighten the mounting screw and you're done.
Congratulations. Your inside work is completed, take a well deserved break and then we will move on to the outside work.
Tying down the IW:
Now the work begins. Starting from where the IW exits the wall and extending up to where the IW begins the horizontal run to the NID it needs to be fastened to the wall with the galvanized straps. The first strap should be placed approximately one inch to the left and two inches below where the wire exits the wall, as this will form a drip loop.
The next strap should be two inches to the left from where the wire exits the wall and level to the hole. This strap will be the first in the vertical run. Keeping the IW plumb, the third strap should be placed within six inches of the where the IW will transition to the horizontal run.
Now with the IW secured top and bottom and using the IW as a guide install additional straps every three feet to secure your IW and unless you want to turn you home into an ant farm don't forget to DAP up the hole where your IW exits the wall.
Note: If the vertical run is in a high traffic area (lots of little fingers going by) or can get weed-whacked, a plastic U-Guard or it's ugly cousin a stick of PVC conduit can be used to provide additional protection for the IW.
Heading back to the NID:
Take the IW and your ladder and loop the IW into the drive rings all the way back to the NID but don't run it down the wall at the NID yet.
Installing the Splitter:
Locate a spot adjacent to your NID to install the splitter. If possible, place the splitter far enough from the NID so that the cover of one doesn't block the other when open. Using the 10X 1 1/4 inch screws secure the splitter to the wall. Run your home run IW to the splitter. In most cases, it can be ty-rapped to the existing IW's running to the NID. As mentioned before, avoid ty-rapping it to anything electrical. If you cannot use the existing IW's, reverse the process used to secure the vertical run of the IW at the jack end.
Wiring the Splitter:
Open the NID and locate the wiring for your ADSL line. If you only have one line in your home this is easy. If not refer to the trouble-shooting section of this web site for more information on how to identify which line is which.
Once you have identified the correct wiring unplug all of the modular connectors from all of the Entrance Bridge Networks (EBN) in the NID. This will disconnect all the incoming lines and prevent you from getting shocked.
Carefully make notes of where each wire is connected to the EBN. The goal is to not reverse the connections on any of them. Normally the colors are what one can go by. Note I said normally. I have seen wires in NID's that had no colors at all. Keep the ones on the right and left or top and bottom together and you will avoid any problems when it comes time to tie things back down.
Wiring Up the Splitter:
Now that you have made lots of notes of how the wiring was connected, disconnect all the wires from the EBN of the ADSL line.
Run an IW between the NID and the splitter. Secure or ty-rap this wire where it enters the NID leaving a foot or so inside the NID.
Strip off about nine inches of jacket and connect the w/bl - bl/w wires to the binding posts that the pre-existing IW came off of.
Note: If the pre-existing IW was connected to more than two binding posts remember to tighten down the unused posts as well. If left loose they can become a source of static.
Using Scotchloc connectors connect the w/or - or/w wires of the IW from the splitter to the pre-existing IW's going color for color or using the following color code.
w/or = green or black
or/w = red or yellow
Wrap any remaining conductors of the IW to the splitter around the jacket.
Run the other end of the IW from the NID and your home run into the splitter, then secure or ty-rap them.
Cut the IW's and strip off the insulation as before. Working with the IW to the NID connect the w/bl - bl/w wires to the Network binding posts in the splitter then connect the w/or - or/w to the voice binding posts. If you are installing a two port jack on your home run, connect the w/or - or/w wires of your home run to these terminals also.Connect the w/bl - bl/w wires of the home run to the data terminals and your done in he splitter. Then clean out any trimmings and close the splitter up.
Clean out the NID, reinsert the modular plugs into the EBN (s) and close up the NID.
Connect your ADSL modem to your new jack cross your fingers and pull sync! Happy surfing. You worked for it.
Building a home run in an apartment or condo environment using the existing IW.
In order for this to work properly, three items must be present. You must have an Inside Network Interface (INI) installed,
there must be an existing jack where you want to connect your ADSL modem and there must be a spare pair between the INI and that jack.
The first thing to do is determine where the telephone service enters your home. This is the point where the Telephone Company will have installed the INI.
If you do not have an INI, you will need to have one installed by the Telephone Company, as locating and separating the incoming lines from your inside wiring is not within the scope of a DIY project.
Rewiring the INI.
Before doing any rewiring, check all the jacks in the home to be sure all are in good order. Its not uncommon to find a jack that is out of service and its better to know this before rewiring, rather than finding it dead after the work is done and trying to figure out what went wrong.
Disconnect the feed to the subscriber side of the INI by removing the modular cord located on the bottom of the INI from its jack. Completely remove the plug from the jack to prevent it from creeping back into the jack on its own.
Using a flat blade screwdriver, remove the two screws holding the cover and then remove the cover. Inside the INI you will find your IW in the lower section which I will refer to as the subs side of the INI, and the Telcos wiring in the upper part.
Do not do any rewiring in the upper part.
Make careful notes of how the wiring is connected and then disconnect all the conductors from the subs side of the EBN.
Open up the jack where the ADSL modem is to be installed by removing the faceplate screws and then carefully removing the jack from the wall. Disconnect the IW from the jack and strip off a small amount of insulation from the end of the first pair (w/bl or r/g) and attach your ohmmeter or buzzer to this pair.
Now at the INI, short (that is, connect together the two wires that make up the pair) one pair and only one pair of your IWs at a time until you see the short (zero or nearly zero ohms) on your meter or the buzzer sounds. Once located, mark the IW and/or clearly separate it from the other IWs as two pairs from this IW will be needed to give you the homerun with splitter install, while the other IWs will be bridged to the voice side of the inside splitter at the INI.
Disconnect the meter or buzzer.
Rewiring the INI.
Start by connecting the w/bl - bl/w pair of the IW you located to the ring and tip binding posts of the EBN.
Tighten securely and then using the ScotchLoc connectors, connect the w/o - o/w to the other IWs you removed from the EBN.
Dress the wires back into the INI and replace the cover, but DO NOT reconnect the modular cord at this time.
Installing the inside splitter.
At the desired location of the ADSL Modem, remove the mounting ring of the disconnected jack and set it aside. Connect the w/bl - bl/w pair to the network terminals of the inside splitter and then connect the w/o - o/w pair to the voice terminals. Dress back any remaining pairs to prevent shorts or grounds and carefully push the inside splitter into the wall box and fasten in place with the supplied hardware.
Reconnect the modular cord at the INI and test for sync at the ADSL jack on the inside splitter. Also, dont forget to check all the other jacks in your home for dialtone. If all goes well, you should be done. Happy Surfing.
An analog guy trapped in a digital world helping people communicate.