IVB\’s Home Theater and Home Automation

You don\’t have to spend a lot for that smarthome.

Telco progress: Phone line hardening, RJ31, and Elk/DSL issues

Posted by IVB on September 17, 2006

Awesome day, even if I didn’t get nearly enough done as I wanted.  Clearly the hours of learning about how phone lines/telco paid off as it only took me 3 hours to:

1) Determine which of the 2 demarc blocks was main line, which was alternate
2) Pull telco line out of house, encase within flex metal pipe that I got from HomeDepot, secure to both outside and inside of house, cut the excess pipe [and dang, is it hard to do that]
3) Connect Elk RJ31X block
4) Run telco wiring to Elk
5) Mount Leviton 12-way structured media center panel
6) Run telco wiring to SMC
7) Jury rig an RJ11->RJ45 cable, so I could test it out with an analog line
8) Reconnect it all, and the phone actually works!

The one thing my research didn’t turn up is that I cannot connect a security panel right off the RJ31 then send to telephone lines for distro if I have DSL. If I turn on the Elk, my DSL dies as the alarm panel is interfering with it.( See http://www.homephonewiring.com/splt-alarm.html Here’s a good diagram of how to do it, (See http://www.hometech.com/techwire/dsl.html#CC-SPSH70SR1 ) Here’s the DSL whole house filter that I just ordered from HomeTech[/url] to deal with this for me.  This is the “cleanest” way to go, rather than some hokey inline filter, figured as long as I’m doing this whole thing I may as well do it right. Also while I’m “doing things right”, I’m going to move my DSL modem/router to the “right” location in the basement with the other stuff, not in the MBR like it currently is. All in all, the project has another few hours before I can declare complete. I wouldn’t call it “over allocated time”, as I didn’t think I’d be able to move that router so soon. The wife is going to love that as it gets the MBR that much cleaner.

Here’s what the outer telephone line now looks like. Note that it comes into the house about 4′ up, so it used to be pretty insecure. That’s what all the houses are like in our neighborhood. I pulled on it pretty hard, no chance that the average joe will be able to yank that tube out with a standard pull. I’m sure a pro could do something if they really wanted in my house, but if you turn to the right, our neighbors have an unsecured phone line and a 50″ plasma in plain view, so my theory is that I just want them to move to an easier house.


I also bit the bullet and ordered an $850 in parts machine to make up for the $215 geeks.com PC that didn’t work out. Clearly several levels higher than what I got, but I figured that rather than get another machine that’s an outdated machine, I may as well get a basic Core2Duo setup. It’s pretty basic, only 1 stick of 1GB RAM, but an Abit AB9 mobo with bigtime RAID on the mobo, and a fanless Gigabyte Geforce vidcard, so I can put it in the office and satisfy the wife’s desire for quiet as well as my need for a 2nd video renderer.


One Response to “Telco progress: Phone line hardening, RJ31, and Elk/DSL issues”

  1. Great to see that this website is still here, and including some great postings. Thanx for letting me know and maybe you want to exchange links with me?


    With lovely greetings,

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