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When troubleshooting telephone wiring, sometimes you need to work with individual leads.  Also, the typical “butt set” tester includes alligator clips rather than a modular plug.  In both cases, the tool you need to make the connection between the leads and the modular plug is called a banjo.

Banjos, also called “modular test adapters” by suit-wearing folk, are available from a number of makers with 4, 6, or 8 wires.  Most have a clip on the back so they can attach to your bat-belt, and some include handy features like wiring charts printed on the face.

Ideal builds polarity test lights into their “Smart6” adapter, and Progressive (now owned by Greenlee) builds a whole toner into their “AdapToner” series.

Street pricing starts around $20 for the basic models.

AdapToner 8 [Greenlee]
Smart6 [Ideal]
Street Pricing [Froogle]


One Response to Finds: Modular Breakout ‘Banjo’ Adapter

  1. Phillip says:

    I’ve been a telephone tech for 20 years now, I do all my testing and toning with my customized [url=http://www.tempo-textron.com/prod_detail.cfm?cat=800&subcat=803&pid=10464]Tempo LAN Toner 2[/url]. I say “customized” because I took my Dremel tool and cut off those useless allegator clips and then I installed “angled bed of nails” clips instead. The modular plug plugs into all RJ’s, and it is its own breakout unit for testing with the buttset or other instrument. It also has no problem toning CAT 6 when you choose two tips instead of a specific pair. It has a male plug and a female jack so no adapters are needed (except a coax adapter) regardless of the connection.

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