A simple device ends the frustration of threading small connectors for cable and satellite TV
The night was cold and rainy, and we had just backed into our campsite. Getting set up in those conditions was bad enough, but when the last connection, the cable TV, was to be made, I’d had enough. Trying to thread the coax connectors onto the RV and the pedestal outlets with my wet, cold fingers in the dark almost drove me to a tantrum. Most RVers know the feeling.
Since then, I’ve found a solution by installing the RV Cable Grip on the ends of the RG-6 cable that plugs into the coaxial connection on the side of my trailer and the park’s cable hookup or my portable satellite antenna. This is one of those items I wish I had invented, but credit goes to Jim Wright of J Wright Concepts. A basic idea with a lot of fine-designing behind it, the RV Cable Grip is a plastic device that, with the aid of a tool that comes in the kit, slides over the ferrule on a coax connector and makes it easier to align and tighten.
The kit comes in a small bag that contains two grips, the installation tool, a plastic hex nut and a cup. Easy-to-follow instructions are included, and the company has a helpful video on its website and YouTube.
To install the first grip, the coax connector is inserted so the hex edges line up. Next, the tool is put into the cup with the nut fully retracted and is screwed on the threaded end of the connector until snug. The nut is turned over the cup until the tip of the coax ferrule just starts to become visible. Then the tool is unscrewed from the connector, and the process is repeated with the second grip on the other end of the cable.
One thing we noticed during the install was that the grip can be reused if you happen to break off the center conductor of the coax. If this happens, just pull the connector back through, cut off the bad end, strip and compress another connector on the cable, and reinstall the grip.
This little invention makes connecting the cable much easier, especially after dark, in bad weather and for folks who have difficulty handling small items, such as those with a touch of arthritis in the fingers.
The RV Cable Grip fits standard professional compression ends on coax connections, including those made by Ideal and available with its coax-compression tool at home-supply centers. The grips are not compatible with premade coax cables that have molded ends. If you don’t have the right connectors and don’t want to buy the tools to make your own cables, J Wright Concepts offers 25-foot cables with the grips already attached.
The RV Cable Grip installation kit is available on the company’s website for $16.99. The cable with preassembled grips sells for $28.99.
RV Cable Grip | 916-955-0048 | www.rvcablegrip.com
Chris Dougherty is technical editor of Trailer Life and MotorHome. Chris is an RVDA/RVIA certified technician and lifelong RVer, including 10 years as a full-timer. He and his wife make their home in Massachusetts and hit the road with their travel trailer every chance they get.