3 Types of Bare Copper Wire

3 Types of Bare Copper Wire

We’ve mentioned a few different types of bare copper wire, so let’s break them down a bit further. Soft and hard drawn wire vary in how they’re produced. Each uses a different method to pull solid copper into the shape of the wire, and soft drawn copper also applies a heat treatment for added durability during flexion. The third type of copper wire is stranded, which is made up of a large collection of copper wires bundled together.

All three types of bare copper conduct the same amount of electricity. The differences lie in the type of installation and preference of the user.

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1. Soft Drawn Bare Copper

Soft drawn bare copper wire is the most popular version and probably what you’ll find when searching for bare or solid copper. The term “soft drawn” explains it pretty well, because copper is solid but soft enough to bend and wrap around corners. It is simply shaped and often annealed for durability. Bare copper is used for grounding and overhead drive transmission installations.

2. Hard Drawn Bare Copper

Hard drawn copper wire has a coating over it to give it a bit of protection and to strengthen the wire. You’ll notice when holding it that soft drawn wire is much easier to bend than the hard drawn. Sometimes a stiff wire is easier to install when the application isn’t bending around corners. Both types of bare copper are approved with mil-spec AA59551.

3. Stranded Bare Copper

If you require superior flexibility, consider using stranded bare copper. Using multiple thinner strands bundled together will give the wire more movement and bendability which can be helpful in some situations.