Where to find copper wire?

Wondering where to find copper wire for your generator, transformer, or other application? For solid copper insulated wire, view our product lines below. For other types, including aluminum, plastic or rubber insulated, bare or stranded wire, call us for a quote!


View our Copper Wire selection here:

Soderon 155 » GP/MR-200 »

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Why Choose Copper Wire?

Copper is the most frequently used metal in electrical wiring. Only silver has a higher conductivity rating, but copper is much cheaper due to it being a non-precious metal.

Because it has lower conductivity than copper, aluminum wire must have a cross section 1.6 times larger than an equivalent copper wire in order to create the same current capability. This makes copper wire less cumbersome than aluminum wire and, in most cases, more efficient.

Copper can also withstand more extreme conditions because it is 300% more durable than aluminum.

TEMCo offers two types of wire produced by Essex: Soderon 155 and GP/MR-200



Applications

Copper wire is used in applications which require tight coils of wire. It can be used in a wide variety of applications. TEMCo is where to find copper wire to use in your generator, inductor, motor, transformer or jewelry making.


  • Generators - A generator is used to convert mechanical energy to electrical energy using copper coils that spin inside large magnets. Smaller generators coils might be self-excited, meaning that the generator is powered by the current the generator itself is producing. Large power generators will often be powered a self-powered smaller generator that, in turn, powers the coils of the larger generator.
  • Inductors - An inductor is a passive electronic component that stores energy in its magnetic field. Its main function is to stop an instant change in current. The number of turns in the inductor coil, along with the radius of the coil and the core material of the inductor, will affect the wire’s inductance. Inductor wires are copper or aluminum with a thin insulation, also known as magnet wire. It will be coiled around a core made of air, ferromagnetic or ferrimagnetic material, while inductions with low frequencies have cores made of laminated steel.
  • Motors - Motor wire will be found in electric motors, which are used to change electrical energy into mechanical motion. The wire will be made of either copper or aluminum. Applications that use electric motors include fans, blowers, pumps, machines, household appliances, power tools, and disk drives.
  • Jewelry and Crafts - Jewelry wire can be made of either non-precious metals like copper and brass, or precious metals like sterling silver or gold. There are numerous types of wire that are used to make different pieces of jewelry, depending on their gauge and hardness.
  • Transformers - A transformer is used to transfer electrical energy between two circuits through a coil. Transformers also isolate circuits, and change voltage before electrical energy is transmitted over long distances through wires. Transformers use magnet wire.


Where to find copper wire for Motors Where to find copper wire for Transformers Where to find copper wire for generators

Specifications


Solid vs. Stranded Cu Wire

Whereas stranded wire contains multiple bare wire strands braided together to form a larger wire, solid wire is one single piece of copper wire.

The main difference between the two types of wire is elasticity. Solid wires are inflexible, so they will be used in environments that will not necessitate frequent wire movement . Stranded wire is much greater flexibility, which increases as the number of strands goes up. There will be at least seven wires in a stranded wire: six of them will be wrapped around one in the middle.

Stranded and solid wire also differ in their durability. Stranded wire is resistant to metal fatigue because of its flexibility, while it is more likely to corrode because of its surface area. Fatigue is caused by wire overuse, resulting in the cracking of wire material.

The wires that TEMCo sells are solid, but we can give you a quote on stranded wire as well.


Solid Copper Wire Stranded Copper Wire

Pictured above: Solid copper wire (left), stranded wire (right)


Shape

Common copper wires shapes are square, round and rectangular. The shape will factor in the tightness of the coil.

Because of its edges, square wires will be wound tighter than round wires, simply because they have less space between the turns. Confined spaces and in applications where higher power is required are where to find copper wire that is square.

Rectangular copper wires can be wound even tighter because they are flat, leaving no spaces between the turns.

Round wire, on the other hand, will have the most space between the wires.

The Soderon 155 and GP/MR-200 that TEMCo currently offers are both round wire.


Rectangular Copper Wire Round Copper Wire

Pictured above: Rectangular wire (left), round wire (right)


Color

Colored copper wire is made so that it is easier to differentiate wires coming from different circuits. Beyond that purpose, color is purely aesthetic. No aspect of the wire, either its temperature rating, diameter, weight or current, will be affected by its color.

In cases where a specific wire color is preferred, or needed, by a customer, there are some manufacturers that are able to provide customers with a wire in that particular color.

TEMCo offers red and green Soderon 155, while the GP/MR-200 will be natural/amber.


Where to Find Copper Wire Color

Insulation

Insulation protects bare wire from coming in contact with itself while it is being wound. The turns of bare wires, which are not insulated, are not able to come in contact with each other since they would short out. Insulation is imperative for coils that requires hundreds, possibly thousands, of turns of wire.

Wires can come with double coated insulation, which serves to strengthen, and increase the durability, of the wire. The wire will also take on the properties of both insulations.

TEMCo is where to find copper wire with dual insulation, since both the Soderon 155 and the GP/MR-200 are dual insulated wires.

The polyester-imide insulation and polyamide-imide overcoat that the GP/MR 200 comes with gives the wire an increase in dielectric properties and in chemical resistance to solvents and refrigerants. The Soderon 155 wire’s polyurethane insulation and polyamide overcoat, enhances resistance to solvents and increases its windability.



Insulated Magnetic Coil Wire Bare Magnetic Coil Wire

Pictured above: Insulated wire (left), bare wire (right)


Wire Diameter

American wire gauge (AWG) rating of the wire, used in the U.S. and Canada, represents standardized specifications of solid, round wire. Look at the gauge of your wire. This is where to find copper wire diameters.

Standard wire gauges start at 0000 and go up to 40. Beyond a 40 gauge, the wires become so small that the diameters are theoretical.

As the gauge increases, the diameter actually becomes smaller. Therefore, the 0000 gauge wire has a diameter of 11.684 mm, while the 40 gauge wire has a diameter of 0.0799 mm.

Soderon 155 and GP/MR-200 are available in any gauge.



Weight

Much like diameter, wire weight can be determined by finding the gauge. Also, like the diameter, it will decrease as the gauge increases.

The smallest wire gauge, 0000, has a weight of 640.5005 lbs per 1000 feet. The largest standard gauge wire, 40, has a weight is 0.0299 lbs per 1000 feet.



Temperature Rating/Thermal Class

The temperature at which a wire will have a service life of 20,000 hour service life is known as the temperature rating. It can be determined by wire insulation and is measured in degrees celsius.

Operating the wire at lower temperatures will extend the service life, while increasing it will lower the service life.

130°C, 155°C, 180°C and 200°C are some common temperatures found in different types of insulation.

TEMCo is where to find copper wire with 155°C and 200°C temperature ratings. Soderon 155 has a temperature rating of 155°C and the GP/MR-200 has a temperature rating of 200°C.



Bondable Copper Wire

Bondable wire has an adhesive film that is activated by heat. The film can be epoxy, polyester or polyamide, and will go on top of the regular insulation. The film bonds the wire turns together, creating a self-supporting coil which gets rid of the need for the bobbins.

There are three ways you can create a bonded wire. Solvent bonding does not use heat, instead apply the solvent by dipping the completed coil into it. Oven bonding and resistance bonding use heat, with an oven or an electric current, respectively. Oven bonding process can take from up to 30 minutes to finish,with time varying based on the coil size. Resistance bonding time and voltage is totally dependant on the coil design.



Soldering Process

When a wire is attached to another wire, or a circuit board, it needs to be soldered, or fused. Soldering involves taking a melted down metal with a lower melting point, usually tin or lead, and applying it to the end of the wire so that when it resolidifies, the end of the wire will be merged with the other application.

Insulation sometimes needs to be removed from a wire before being soldered, but not in every case. It depends on the wire being used. The GP/MR-200 wire that TEMCo sells requires the insulation to be removed first, but the Soderon 155 wire does not, since the insulation acts as a flux.



Where to Find Copper Wire

If you're wondering where to find copper wire, TEMCo is the best place for you.

TEMCo supplies insulated, solid round wire, but if you need any other type of wire, don’t hesitate to call TEMCo a quote. Check out our inventory below, or give us a call today!

View Soderon 155 Wire Selection View GP/MR-200 Wire Selection

Call us at 877.474.8209