Test for fiber continuity without tools

When you have to test the continuity of fiber in a telecommunications closet and do not have any tools with you, finding the appropriate light source or meter can take valuable time and possibly make a bad impression on your customer.

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Bryan A. Ignatow, Sprint Paranet

problem

When you have to test the continuity of fiber in a telecommunications closet and do not have any tools with you, finding the appropriate light source or meter can take valuable time and possibly make a bad impression on your customer.

solution

In a closet that has existing and operating equipment, you can use the light-emitting diode (led) indicators of existing equipment as a light source. Since the light sources can vary in color, you can test multiple fibers at once.

procedure

1 Attach fiber patch cable to both ends of the strand(s) under test.

2 Hold the patch cable up to the existing equipment`s lighted led.

3 Make sure you`re using a "constantly on" led rather than one that blinks.

4 Also, if possible, use exposed leds rather than reflected or guided ones, because the latter have less power.

5 Verify the light at the other end of the cable, but do not look directly into the cable.

6 You can test multiple strands of fiber, depending on the number of led colors present in the closet.

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Click here to enlarge image

Shown here is the basic setup of a fiber-optic link and the instruments you can use to test for fiber continuity, even if you have no traditional continuity-testing tools.

Bryan A. Ignatow is a senior technical analyst with Sprint Paranet (Dallas, TX), a nationwide network services provider owned by Sprint. Bryan can be reached at e-mail: ignatow@ sprintparanet.com. This tip was submitted for the Cabling Installer Tips` Contest at Cabling Installation Expo `98, held last October in Atlanta, GA.

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