More Connectors – MilSpec Rotator Weatherproof and commodity Weatherproof Ethernet

Searching for weatherproof four conductor connectors rated for much more than 24vdc at 10 Amps, I came across some surplus Amphenol connectors that should fit the bill. I’ve shot a few photos to show how these work.  These were bought from a surplus dealer via their eBay store.

As the 4o3a Rotator Genius uses CAT5 but screw wired inside the Azimuth sensor located out on the antenna, I wanted a weather resistant Ethernet connector.  This way I could pre-wire the sensor in the workshop and if I ever needed to replace it the change out would avoid getting inside the sensor while up on the tower.

So I picked a commodity Ethernet extender which with a pit of extra work will be about as waterproof as it gets   These came from Amazon

I bought a five pack of the Ethernet connectors with most for future use, and the Amphenol connectors came as two-sets again providing a spare.

As I will be putting up another Skyneedle at my Washington Island home in 2020, the spares will be used there.



3 thoughts on “More Connectors – MilSpec Rotator Weatherproof and commodity Weatherproof Ethernet

  1. Kuby N6JSX says:

    Mil-Spec is not always that great and must be assembled ‘perfectly correct’ and then good luck. I’ve had much exposure/experience with many disappointments on Mil & Aerospace items.

    If you seek keyed and near weatherproof connections – then check for 4/5/8/12 connection automotive trailer connectors. They make them both male and female in-line with leaders wires. That is what my antenna rotor-cheater-cable uses. Allows me to pull the rotor anytime with no loose in connection screws/WX proof. Good enough for 80mph WX behind a vehicle – good enough for a static in air use with drip loops.

    • k9zw says:

      Hi N6JSX

      Trailer connectors seem to use 18 AWG except for the ground which often is 16AWG.

      I’ve not been able to find the current carrying capacity for them.

      The AlfaSpid will be running 24 volts nominal, which is actually closer to 27 vdc.

      Max draw is 10 amp at that 24 volts dc.

      I put in the rotator run with 12 AGW power wires and 18 AGW sensor wires. Considerably more carrying capacity than trailer connectors.

      Intent with the up-spec wire was to control the voltage drop/sense signal attenuation, and to allow for upgrading the supply voltage to 48vdc if the turn-rate ends up slower than what I’d like.

      I’m open to having my math back-checked if you have time. The feed is 220 ft to the tower bulkhead, then 85 ft to the rotator platform, so I used 300 LF to calculate voltage drop.



      I used trailer connectors on the last tower, but there I was running the rotator at 13.8 vdc like the rest of the shack. I had difficulties where the trailer connector wires were spliced into the rotator cable, and eventually used a screw type connector-Buss which had to be waterproofed.

  2. k9zw says:

    Found some specs – 4.2 amps rated except for brake circuits which are 7.5 amp, all at 12 vdc.

    Taking my 10 amp @ 24vdc that become 20 amps @ 12vdc or three to five times trailer ratings (without allowing for any safety margins at any level).

    There is a heavy-duty round trailer connector that is rated 35 amps @ 12 vdc which is 17.5 amp @ 24 vdc.



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