Recently i watched my coworker disassembling a pc using only one tool. Was it the right tool for the job? Yes and no. It was the tool he had… it worked, however, there exists definitely more than one tool out there that would have made the task easier! This case is definitely one that many fiber optic installers know all too well. As being a gentle reminder, what number of you have used your Splicer’s Tool Kit (cable knife/scissors) to eliminate jacketing or even slit a buffer tube and then make use of the scissors to hack away at the Kevlar? Did you nick the glass? Did you accidentally cut through the glass and need to start over?
Correctly splicing and terminating Fiber drawing machine requires special tools and techniques. Training is very important and there are lots of excellent sources of training available. Do not mix your electrical tools with your fiber tools. Use the right tool to do the job! Being proficient in fiber work can become increasingly necessary as the importance of data transmission speeds, fiber for the home and fiber for the premise deployments continue to increase.
Many factors set fiber installations apart from traditional electrical projects. Fiber optic glass is very fragile; it’s nominal outside diameter is 125um. The least scratch, mark or even speck of dirt will change the transmission of light, degrading the signal. Safety is important simply because you are working with glass that can sliver in your skin without being seen through the human eye.
Transmission grade lasers are incredibly dangerous, and require that protective eyewear is important. This industry has primarily been coping with voice and data grade circuits that may tolerate some interruption or slow down of signal. The individual speaking would repeat themselves, or perhaps the data would retransmit. Today we are working with IPTV signals and customers who will not tolerate pixelization, or momentary locking from the picture. All of the situations mentioned are reason for the customer to look for another carrier. Each situation could have been avoided if proper attention was given to the techniques used while preparing, installing, and maintaining FTTH cable production line.
With that being said, why don’t we review basic fiber preparation? Jacket Strippers are utilized to remove the 1.6 – 3.0mm PVC outer jacket on simplex and duplex fiber cables. Serrated Kevlar Cutters will cut and trim the kevlar strength member directly beneath the jacket and Buffer Strippers will take away the acrylate (buffer) coating from your bare glass. A protective plastic coating is applied for the bare fiber right after the drawing process, but prior to spooling. The most common coating is really a UV-cured acrylate, which can be applied by two layers, resulting in a nominal outside diameter of 250um for the coated fiber. The coating is highly engineered, providing protection against physical damage caused by environmental elements, such as temperature and humidity extremes, contact with chemicals, reason for stress… etc. while minimizing optical loss.
Without it, the producer would struggle to spool the fiber without breaking it. The 250um-coated fiber will be the building block for many common fiber optic cable constructions. It is usually used as is also, particularly when additional mechanical or environmental protection is not needed, such as on the inside of optical devices or splice closures. For further physical protection and simplicity of handling, a secondary coating of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) or Hytrel (a thermoplastic elastomer which has desirable characteristics for use being a secondary buffer) is extruded over the 250um-coated fiber, increasing the outside diameter as much as 900um. This kind of construction is referred to as ‘tight buffered fiber’. Tight Buffered may be single or multi fiber and therefore are seen in Premise Networks and indoor applications. Multi-fiber, tight-buffered cables often can be used for intra-building, risers, general building and plenum applications.
A ‘Rotary Tool’ or ‘Cable Slitter’ may be used to slit a ring around and thru the outer jacketing of ‘loose tube fiber’. Once you expose the durable inner buffer tube, use a ‘Universal Fiber Access Tool’ which is perfect for single central buffer tube entry. Used on the same principle as the Mid Span Access Tool, (that enables access to the multicolored buffer coated tight buffered fibers) dual blades will slit the tube lengthwise, exposing the buffer coated fibers. Fiber handling tools for instance a spatula or a lqzgij will help the installer to get into the fiber needing testing or repair.
After the damaged fiber is exposed a hand- stripping tool will be employed to eliminate the 250um coating so that you can work together with the bare fiber. The next step will be cleansing the optical fiber proof-testing machine and preparing so that it is cleaved. A great cleave is one of the most important factors of making a low loss on a splice or perhaps a termination. A Fiber Optic Cleaver is really a multipurpose tool that measures distance from your end of the buffer coating to the point where it will be joined plus it precisely cuts the glass. Always remember to employ a fiber trash-can for your scraps of glass cleaved off the fiber cable.