400 vs 400 FLEX for UV Protection

Posted by A.J. Farmer on

Mike asks "I need to replace several runs of Times Microwave LMR-400UF. At the time I bought a 500-ft spool of it, they neglected to publish the fact that it is unsuitable for exposure to sunlight and UV. If we have anything here in Far West Texas, it is sunlight and UV. Additionally, I have 6 runs of coax that need to loop around antenna rotors. The cable must be flexible enough to withstand repeated flexing around the rotors.  How suitable will your cable be in meeting my needs? THANK YOU. Have a SUPER DAY."

Good morning Mike, thanks for reaching out! A.J. here (AJ3U). I've visited West Texas and I know exactly what you mean!

We have both a standard 400 and a 400 FLEX (UF). Each has tradeoffs. Both are rated for UV survival.

The 400 has a PE jacket which provides the strongest protection against UV but it also has a solid center conductor which is not recommended for in motion use such as around a rotor. We provide a 20+ year life expectancy on the 400 due to the PE jacket.

The 400 FLEX (UF Type) has a TPE jacket which is softer and will break down sooner due to UV exposure and we give it a 10+ year life expectancy due to this. This softer jacket makes the cable more flexible so that's the tradeoff. It also has a stranded center conductor so you are able to use it around rotors without an issue.

My recommendation is standard 400 from the shack and up the tower and then transition to 400 FLEX for the portion that will be in motion from the top of the tower looping around your rotor to the antennas. This way you get the best of both worlds and if a replacement is needed down the road, you'll only need to replace the looped runs of 400 FLEX and not the entire run down the tower.

I hope that helps! Please let me know if you have any other questions!

A.J. with JEFA Tech (de AJ3U)

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