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steel cable as a transformer core? Answered

could i use thick steel cable as a transformer core (1 inch stranded cable) if i saturated it in a nonconductive (epoxy? rubber cement? ect..?   material to eliminate eddy currents and molded it into a double C core?

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steveastroukBest Answer (author)2011-12-14

No, because steel is permanently magnetic. Two things will happen - it will constantly blow the fuses, because the input impedance at switch on will be very low, and the core will get hot as it magnetises and demagnetises.

Steve

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pwnag3 (author)steveastrouk2011-12-14

would low carbon steel work, and it will be oil cooled, so heat is not that much of a problem

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steveastrouk (author)pwnag32011-12-14

There's a very good reason why transformers are ALWAYS made with "soft iron", not steel. It'll do SOME kind of transformation, but its always going to have a tendency to blow fuses.

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pwnag3 (author)steveastrouk2011-12-14

i don't use fuses, they blow too often, and i have some high power circuit breakers, but do u have any clue if they make soft iron cables? it's the easiest thing i can think of

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steveastrouk (author)pwnag32011-12-14

The metal sheathing wire AROUND electrical cables is usually pretty soft.

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pwnag3 (author)steveastrouk2011-12-15

good point, ill try and check the local junkyard for soft cables and such, i may also get soft iron sheets and laminate it traditionally, but ill decide later, i like the idea of a transformer made of cable, but it must work so, i'll look for somthing pretty soft, and corroded xD

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Burf (author)2011-12-13

Unless you have a way to pressure inject the insulating material, short of untwisting the wire rope, you'll never get each strand completely insulated.

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69buickgs (author)Burf2015-09-23

You could draw it into the cable using a vacuum. Pull the air out, resin goes in.

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rickharris (author)2011-12-14

+1 all replies.

I can't imagine winding a 1 inch cable round anything It's big enough to moor ships.- How BIG do you intend this core to be?

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rickharris (author)rickharris2011-12-14

I Really Really must read the question thoroughly - write out 100 times Harris.

You do indeed say as a core.

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pwnag3 (author)rickharris2011-12-14

the cable will be the core, im planning on a 9-12 square inch core, planning on a 1:1000 transformer submerged in oil

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frollard (author)2011-12-13

Should work, so long as you laminate it to avoid the eddy's you should be okay. If it forms a complete loop anywhere it will have problems.

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pwnag3 (author)frollard2011-12-13

thanks for backing my theory, i researched this for hours, and found NOTHING about using steel cables for transformers

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frollard (author)pwnag32011-12-13

and as Burf says; it will be VERY difficult to get the resin into the cable unless you unwind the strands and insulate them.

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