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How To Make a Category 5 / CAT 5e Patch Cable

Step 1: Before we start building the patch cable you will need to cut a length of stranded CAT5e. When cutting the length of cable you should make sure to measure. Nothing is worse than the patch cable you just built being an inch too short for your application.

After cutting the desired length we will start building our cable by stripping back approximately 1 inch of the jacket.

When striping back the jacket make sure that the depth of your stripper is set deep enough to cut the jacket but not so deep that it nicks the conductors. If you do nick the conductors while stripping the cable, the cable may work fine at first, but after time the conductors will break or even worse begin to short out.

Step 2: Now that we have the jacket stripped back we'll want to separate and straighten the pairs. We will start by pulling the first pair and the last pair to their respective sides (Orange Pair to the left and Brown Pair to the right). Untwist the orange and brown pairs making sure not to untwist the cable any further than you've stripped back the jacket. Now we'll split the green pair. Pull the white/green conductor to the left and the green conductor to the right. This leaves you with the blue pair in the middle.  Untwist the blue taking care to ensure that the white/blue conductor is on the left and the blue conductor on the right.

Note: Normally, it would be unmentionable to untwist the CAT5e pairs. Except when building patch cables. It would be almost impossible to insert the conductors into the proper connector locations without untwisting. (Keep in mind you want to keep as much of the twist of each pair intact in order to meet performance standards.)


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