Fiber Optic Cable Splicing

Fiber Optic Cable Splicing.

What is it to splice a fiber optic cable? To state it simply; it is to join the ends of two optical fiber together. When done correctly, this makes for a strong and smooth connection. When light passes through, it is not scattered or reflected at the splice point. This makes for minimal loss.

There a lot of times when splicing is needed. It can be used at a connector to pigtail, to make a cable longer as well as when a cable is damaged, but you are unable or don’t want to replace the entire thing.
Proper and correct splicing of fiber optic cables will make sure that your network will avoid bothersome disruption.

Fusion Splice.
With a fusion splice, the two fibers are melted (fused) together to become 1 cable. Making a joint in this way can be just as strong as the natural fiber. To protect the joint the appropriate heat shrink should be used to cover. Like RPC4950-ND from Digi-Key.

Important steps when splicing is to make sure your cable is

  1. Stripped
    Digi-Key part number PA1177-ND
    Digi-Key Fiber Optic Wire Strippers and Accessories
  2. Cleaned

2805-MCC-POC03M-ND and Data Sheet
For more information take a look at [Fiber Optic Cable Cleaning](
optic-cable-cleaning/5624/2) from our Technical Forum.
3) Cleaved
The secret to a good splice is in the cleaving. A straight cleave on both cables can be achieved with well-maintained equipment and learning proper technique

Digi-Key part 2177-FCL200-ND

Digi Key part 298-16219-ND
To fuse together. You need heat in the form of an electric arc. Laser, gas flame or tungsten filament.
This Fusion Splice from our inventory will complete the process.


Mechanical splice.
This type of splice aligns the two fibers in the correct position. Plastic or glass alignment sleeves just larger than the fibers themselves are used. This type of splice is not permanently joined. The cables are held in alignment.
It is still extremely important to follow the same steps for fusion splicing and make sure your cables are stripped, cleaned, and cleaved properly.

Pros and Cons

Fusion splicing can give you, lower reflectance, high performance, as well as strong and reliable joints. It does require a bit more expensive machinery, a higher initial cost, and some training.
Mechanical splicing gives you the benefit of no expensive machinery needed. Tools required are relatively inexpensive and Minimum training required. It does, however, have a higher insertion loss as well as higher reflectance compared to fusion splicing.

Splicing can be a cost-effective and efficient way to join two fiber optic cables together to form a strong smooth connection with minimal loss and high performance. Fusion and mechanical splicing both have their advantages. With the correct training and parts from Digi-Key, you can complete your projects today.