Was playing around with a magnet today and to my surprise, I can pick up one of my ethernet patch cables with the magnet. Copper, aluminum, and plastic don't do that, so it must contain steel wire? Is this common? None of my other cables do this.
The magnetic cable is light grey or tan in color and has no markings at all. I'm assuming this qualifies as a "cheap junk" part?
Heater wrote:Yeah. Cheap crap. Probably normal now a days.
Heck, you can pick up "copper" coins with a magnet now.
Many UK coins are nickel/copper plated steel or similar nowadays. It's cheaper to make and more robust.
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There isnt a whole lot of need for copper in the middle of the conductor since, at Cat5 and up, all the signal is in the outer layer of the core. So, a steel centre makes the cable stronger, easier to install, cheaper and STILL do the job. Whats not to like?
I didn't know that. I have found a particularly thin Ethernet cable and a USB cable that are magnetic. I cut away some of the PVC sleeve on the Ethernet cable to check the twisted pairs inside and they are the magnetic bit.