Bare vs. Tinned Copper Wire

Bare and Tinned copper are almost always used as the conductor material in any kind of wire. They are great at transmitting energy. Bare and tinned copper wires are used in most homes and industrial applications. These materials also can be used to ground electrical systems. Bare and Tinned copper should not be used to transmit electric currents because they are lacking insulation and someone could get seriously injured if they touched a live wire. These are most typically used in overhead power sources where it cannot be easily reached.

Bare Copper

Bare CopperBare copper can come in many forms. There is solid bare copper, as well as stranded bare copper. The stranded copper is usually much easier to bend than the solid copper. This bare copper is most commonly used as ground wire. It can also be found as a ground wire in other cables such as Romex, UFB, and MC cables.

Tinned Copper

Tinned CopperTinned copper can be used in settings where the wire is going to be constantly exposed to moisture. The tin on the copper strands are meant to help hold the strands together and prevent them from fraying. The tin also helps the copper to be non-corrosive which is why the wire can handle moisture so well.


Bare Copper SpoolBefore purchasing bare or tinned copper, you want to look at where you intend to use the wire first. Then consider which wire would best suit your needs. When looking to purchase the wire, look at how much you need as well. Some vendors will let you buy the wire at custom lengths while others will not. Usually you can buy this kind of wire by the meter or by the spool. Prices also vary depending on who your vendor is so you might want to check out multiple vendors and compare prices before making a purchase. And finally check to make sure that your vendor is credible. You want to make sure that the wire you’re about to purchase is going to meet the standards set by the NEC.

Just to reiterate these wires should be used for ground wire and above head wiring only. It is not safe to have an electric current running through these wires in a place where people can accidentally or easily touch the wires. Also make sure before purchasing the wire that you check out all of your vendor options before making a decision.



Written by: WesBell Electronics

This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 21st, 2015 at 5:23 pm and is filed under Electrical Wire. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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