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MECA Electronics Attenuators

Copper Wire Properties & Gauge Conversions

Values presented here are standards available for many independent publications, but ultimately they all originate from the American Wire Gauge (AWG) system (also aka the Brown and Sharp gauge). It has been in existence since the mid 1800s in the U.S. and Canada.

Note that as wire gauge number is increased the wire diameter decreases. Although it might seem somewhat backward, there is a good reason for it. Originally, it was related to the number of time a wire needed to be drawn through an extraction die in order to achieve the final wire size.

By definition, 36 AWG is 0.0050 inches in diameter, and 0000 (four-ought) is 0.4600 inches in diameter. The ratio of these diameters is 92, and there are 40 gauge sizes from #36 to #0000, or 39 steps. Using this ratio, wire gauge sizes vary geometrically according to the following formula: The diameter of a 36 AWG wire is:

AWG wire diameter equation for solid wire - RF Cafe

Accordingly, the ASTM B 258-02 standard defines the ratio between successive sizes to be the 39th root of 92, or approximately 1.1229322.

AWG wire gauge equation for solid wire - RF Cafe

Stranding designation of a/b means a number of b gauge wires. E.g., 7/44 means 7 strands of 44 AWG solid wire.

Note: Just a 3 dB change in power represents a doubling (or halving) of power, a change of 3 wire sizes represents approximately a doubling (or halving) of cross-sectional area.

See wire gauge conversion chart at bottom of page. Values given at 25 °C, and are based on ideal parameters of pure copper.

A circular mil is the cross-sectional area of a circle with a diameter of 1 mil (1/000th of an inch).

AWG
(solid)
Approx. O.D.Circular
Mil
Area
Weight
(lbs/1000 ft)
Weight
(kg/km)
Resistance
(Ω/1000 ft)
Resistance
(Ω/km)
Max
Current
(A)
Inchesmm
400.0031450.079889.8880.02990.0445104934420.09
390.0035310.0896912.470.03770.056283227290.11
380.0039650.100715.720.04760.070866021640.13
370.0044530.113119.830.06000.089352317160.17
360.0050000.127025.000.07570.11341513610.21
350.0056140.142631.520.09540.14232910790.27
340.0063040.160139.750.1200.1792618560.33
330.0070800.179850.130.1520.2262076790.43
320.0079500.201963.210.1910.2851645380.53
310.0079500.226879.700.2410.3591304270.7
300.010030.2548100.50.3040.4531033390.86
290.011260.2860126.70.3840.57181.82681.2
280.012460.3211159.80.4840.72064.82131.4
270.014190.3604201.50.6100.90851.51691.7
260.015940.4049254.10.7691.1440.81342.2
250.017900.4547320.40.9701.4432.41062.7
240.020100.5105404.01.221.8225.784.23.5
230.022570.5733509.51.542.2920.466.84.7
220.025350.6439642.41.952.8916.153.07
210.028460.7229810.12.453.6512.842.09
200.031960.811810223.094.6010.233.311
190.035890.911612883.905.808.0526.414
180.04031.02416244.927.326.3920.916
170.045261.15020486.209.235.0616.619
160.050821.29125837.8211.64.0213.222
150.057071.45032579.8614.73.1810.428
140.064081.628410712.418.52.538.2832
130.071961.828517815.723.32.006.5735
120.080812.053653019.829.41.595.2141
110.090742.305823424.937.11.264.1347
100.10192.5881038031.446.80.9993.2855
90.11442.9061309039.659.00.7922.6064
80.12853.2641651050.074.40.6282.0673
70.14433.6652082063.093.80.4981.6389
60.16204.1152625079.51180.3951.30101
50.18194.620331001001490.3131.03118
40.20435.189417401261880.2490.815135
30.22945.827526401592370.1970.646158
20.25766.543663702012990.1560.512181
10.28937.348836902533770.1240.407211
00.32498.2521055003204750.0980.323328
000.36489.2661331004035990.0780.256283
0000.409610.401678005087560.0620.203245
00000.460011.682116006419530.0490.161

Wire Gauge Conversions to Diameter in Inches

All Units Are in Inches

GAUGE #AWGW & MSWGBWGU.S. Standard
7/00.65130.4900.500 0.5000
6/00.58000.4600.464 0.4688
5/00.51650.4300.432 0.4375
4/00.46000.39380.4000.4540.4063
3/00.40960.36250.3720.4250.3750
2/00.36480.33100.3480.3800.3438
1/00.32490.30650.3240.3400.3125
10.28930.28300.3000.3000.2813
20.25760.26250.2760.2840.2656
30.22940.24370.2520.2590.2391
40.20430.22530.2320.2380.2242
50.18190.20700.2120.2200.2092
60.16200.19200.1920.2030.1943
70.14430.17700.1760.1800.1793
80.12850.16200.1600.1650.1644
90.11440.14830.1440.1480.1495
100.10190.13500.1280.1340.1345
110.09070.12050.1160.1200.1196
120.08080.10550.1040.1090.1046
130.07190.09150.0920.0950.0897
140.06410.08000.0800.0830.0747
150.05710.07200.0720.0720.0673
160.05080.06250.0640.0650.0598
170.045260.0540.0560.0580.0538
180.040300.04750.0480.0490.0478
190.035890.04100.0400.0420.0418
200.031960.03480.0360.0350.0359
210.028460.031750.0320.0320.0329
220.025350.02860.0280.0280.0299
230.022570.02580.0240.0250.0269
240.020100.02300.0220.0220.0239
250.017900.02040.0200.0200.0209
260.015940.01810.0180.0180.0179
270.014200.01730.01640.0160.0164
280.012640.01620.01480.0140.0149
290.011260.01500.01360.0130.0135
300.01030.0140.01240.0120.0120
310.008930.01320.01160.0100.0109
320.007950.01280.01080.0090.0102
330.007080.01180.01000.0080.0094
340.006300.01040.00920.0070.0086
350.005610.00950.00840.0050.0078
360.005000.00900.00760.0040.0070
370.004450.00850.0068  
380.003960.00800.0060  
390.003530.00750.0052  
400.003140.0070.0048  
410.002790.00660.0044  
420.002490.00620.0040  
430.002210.00600.0036  
440.001980.00580.0032  
450.001760.00550.0028  
460.001570.00520.0024  
470.001400.00500.0016  
480.001240.00480.0012  
490.001110.00460.0010  
500.000990.0044   
510.00088    
520.00078    
530.00070    
540.00060    
550.00050    
560.00040    
  • AWG = American Wire Gauge (Brown & Sharpe)
  • W & M = Washburn & Moen (steel wire gauge)
  • SWG = Imperial Standard Wire Gauge
  • BWG = Birmingham or Stubs Wire Gauge
  • US Standard = United States Standard (Revised)
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