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Author Topic: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB  (Read 15465 times)

coolsnakeman

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Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« on: July 16, 2009, 09:36:12 PM »

Hey guys,

First time posting so here it goes. I don't usually ask questions on forums as i am very technically minded and usually have the answer but this time around it looks like i have been beaten. I currently have sky broadband as my SP. I had logged a ticket with them in regards to a slow connection. Please see my router stats below and remember i am 1.7Km line distance from the exchange including the corners:

ADSL Link     Downstream     Upstream
Connection Speed    8096 kbps    768 kbps
Line Attenuation    47.0 db    28.5 db
Noise Margin    6.9 db    14.0 db

I ain't checked that since the LL5 engineer and those noise margins have actually dropped from 9db to 6db. Now as i currently do technical support for BB myself i know that sky put what is called DLM onto there customers line's those of which are LLU which gives this a 10 day training period almost like BT's IP profiling in the first 10 days but slightly different. I was in my test socket for just over a month while sky where trying to work out what was wrong with this connection and why the attenuation was so high on such a short line as for this line you should expect 12.5Mb or higher and sky offers up to 16Mb on the package i am on. Now i had the following done:

Spare router with a filter, RJ11 cable and power pack tested for 24 hours and still the same
Tie Pair shift and still the same
LL5 engineer who fitted an NTE2000 and also fixed some joints at the exchange

Now the LL5 engineer had found i have aliminium cabling from the exchange to the cabinet and copper wire from there to my premises. Because of this sky are unable to do anything further for me and the engineer advised there was no spare copper wire or something to that affect. Now i am underground cabling so the LL5 engineer was unable to dig up the ground without permission. I have been getting negative feedback from my colleagues in work and even someone that works for BT BB technical that BT will not budge to change that aluminium cause it cost to much money unless i am able to really convince them it is service effecting to my phone line (slight hiss on the phone line but not severe). So basically what i am looking for is advise on if anyone has EVER been successfully in convincing BT to change this cabling without having to go to Ofcom or a local MP with a partition. My exchange is due to go FTTC in quarter 1 of 2010 so that should be exciting so i could end of having to wait till then.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2009, 08:27:26 PM by coolsnakeman »
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kitz

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Re: Aliminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2009, 12:28:11 PM »

Hi coolsnakeman and welcome.


>> i have aliminium cabling from the exchange to the cabinet and copper wire from there to my premises.

I'm afraid this is bad news for you and theres quite a lot of lines in the UK that still have some sort of aluminium on the line which adds extra resistance and a higher attenuation reading.  Sometimes you may be lucky and their may be a spair copper pair or one that is slightly better..  but if the aluminium run is before the cab then youre often a bit out of luck :/

>> really convince them it is service effecting to my phone line
Usually this is due to moisture ingression on the joint which often occurs when aluminium is on the line.

In the UK theres nothing to actually set the standards as to what speed you should get for the line length and the only guidelines are those laid out in irrc SINET - SIN 351.  As long as the line is able to meet those standards for voice then its considered acceptable.
Its been a long hard struggle for many to get anything above 500kbps and to aim for 2Mb (as walter will verify).

Its true that the cost of replacing would be very high and this is the reason they dont/wont.  I havent ever heard of anyone getting it replaced without forming some sort of campaign.  There was an area near here that had TPON and it took about 4 years and campaigning  by several hundred people on the estate that were affected before BT installed a copper overlay.  I was told the cost once of this and iirc it was something like 80,000 for only a short run.

>> My exchange is due to go FTTC in quarter 1 of 2010

I know this isnt much help to you but... If you have an FTTC date then at least that is something and far more than lots of other aluminium lines do and there is a glimmer of hope for the future. 
Sorry that I cant give you any more positive news :(
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coolsnakeman

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Re: Aliminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2009, 02:12:46 PM »

Awk well not to worry it was to be expected anyhow so i kinda set myself up so i wasn't to disappointed. It just can be fairly frustrating considering that if that part of the line was replaced for copper i would more than likely achieve the 16Mb that sky are  offering. The only thing i am worried about is the fact that this is causing a considerably amount of throughput issues for me as there is a large amount of errors building on my line due to this aliminium so it is possible that this could cause future drop outs. I wasn't 100% sure on the FTTC so i think i will go back to samknows and check it again. I will continue to complain to BT and see if i can maybe squeeze something out of them (doubt it) but its worth a go. I will keep ya's posted and let ya know if i have started a campaign as i haven't gotten around to asking my neigbours if they are suffering the same issue.
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coolsnakeman

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Re: Aliminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2009, 02:46:52 PM »

Sometimes you may be lucky and their may be a spair copper pair or one that is slightly better.. 

I think the engineer had actually mentioned there was no spair copper pair. Just checked samknows and the exchange at the minute is only enabled for WBC but samknows doesn't seem to mention FTTC. Was suppose to be migrated for 21CN for my PSTN in quarter 1 of this year but that seems to have been delayed.
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Ezzer

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Re: Aliminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2009, 06:16:40 PM »

There are a few ways an engineer can tell whats avalable to a cab cable wise.

"the prints" which are both at the exchange and the laptop I can see what cables are listed to the cab from the exchange (e-side) and from the cab to the dp; typicaly the block at the pole or underground distribution point (d-side). some cabs have more than one cable and thus may be of a different material in parts, diameter wires.

"S.E.A.M." an on line method of looking at the pre measured line loss fo any e-side cable (taken off a load of us in openreach, thanks Offcom  >:()

Or We can call the dsl helpdesk so they can look up seam for us and give us another range if the line loss is better.

Physicaly clipping on a pair on a different cable and measuring it either with a dsl signal or using the hawk.

 the cost of running new/replacement cable is a lot. E-side cables are usualy quite large, so adding to the cost, and the're perssurised with the relaven monitoring equipment on them. saying that things do happen. I'm eagarly awaiting the completion of 4.5km of 0.63 copper 100pair cable to be completed to one cab in this area. Don't know what the cost is but it must be huge. Although its intended to remove something called a gerfeller and tranfer those lines to a normal telephony service (gefellers are very rear now) hopefully it' going to give me an option of swapping e-sides for a lot of people via that route at a hamlet with particular problems due to the current line loss. and if I was planning FTTC for east anglia I certainly know the first place i would put down for it
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coolsnakeman

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2009, 08:26:46 PM »

Something tells me you work for openreach loll So thats where you get all your knowledge from. Its just a shame the way openreach engineers don't have alot of say on what goes on in regards to the line plants because of LLU. I can remember speaking to the PSTN engineer that installed my phone line and he was basically telling me all about not charging customers for replacing sockets in the house that are beyond the test point. He kind of got himself into trouble for that lol. He also mentioned there was days where you where able to not charge the customer and openreach had more freedom to do things. Well perhaps if those days where still there that OR engineer that checked my exchange would of happily went and got an LN engineer to sort out a change in cabling from the exchange to the cab. I have yet again sent another e-mail to BT's complaints department in regards to this so i am awaiting a response. Also have a fault open on my line but off course the line is TOK as i could of told them it would. I have been reading some of your posts in some of the other topics and i must say you know your stuff. I would let you fix my broadband any day if you lived in belfast that is lol.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2009, 08:29:03 PM by coolsnakeman »
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kitz

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2009, 11:44:42 PM »

heh Ezzer is our 'resident REIN specialist' :)

...  and possibly a tad too modest to say that he knows a wee bit more about the workings of adsl than the average openreach engineer.
.......... so I'll say it instead  ;D


------------------------
and whilst on that subject it should be stressed that lack of knowledge its not always the fault of the engineers themselves.   
The segregation of the many different BT departments means that they often dont know what goes on outside their own sector. 
Strict time-slot allocations dont always make it easy for them either...  because if they havent finished a job within the slot then they have to leave.

When I last visited an exchange there were a few different BT type bods 'allocated' to my visit. Both the Openreach Frames and Field engineers happily tagged along too when I spent time with the BTWholesale guy in charge of the dslams/msans..  as this wasnt normally an area in which they would be involved in so they were interested too.
Even the BTw guy didnt know certain info about backhaul provision and the BTw backbone..  and its often a case of gleaning information from different people, departments and resources in order to be able to slot the whole lot in place.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2009, 11:56:53 PM by kitz »
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coolsnakeman

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2009, 12:39:13 PM »

Oooooo we have a resident rein engineer very interesting lol. I feel sorry for rein engineers though because they do have such a hard job when it comes to finding the REIN. Yeah i know what you mean about the slot times. Sky pay openreach for 2 hours to complete there job and sometimes that in itself can be very difficult and frustrating for our customer as if the engineer runs out of time they need to call us back to book another engineer. Since LLU there have been alot of restrictions put in place which i am sure you's would feel it was for the worse rather than the best.
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coolsnakeman

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #8 on: July 25, 2009, 07:42:20 PM »

Well just an update now to see i am bricking it as i have just gone ahead and booked an engineer for this friday coming between 1-6pm. I do have that noise on my line and i guess i have the right to have that investigated. I have tested my phone on its own at the test socket and the background noise is still there even with a spare phone. I was actually able to slightly hear another conversation on the spare phone and could also hear an echo of the cars driving past outside my apartment. I went onto the phone again tonight to littlewoods and when the girl answered the phone i was an echo this appears to be only when the phone is first answered then it settles down and the noise then appears on the line. Any ideas as to what this could be i would suspect the aluminium is contributing to this.
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kitz

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2009, 11:47:57 AM »

Good luck.

>> i would suspect the aluminium is contributing to this.

Aluminium is more susceptible to moisture ingression, which often is a cause of the additional noise.



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waltergmw

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #10 on: July 27, 2009, 02:02:03 PM »

Unlss the design of telephones has changed, there is a small amount of feedback from the phone microphone into the earpiece so you can adjust the volume of your voice.
That might explain the echo coolsnakeman was hearing?

To avoid that problem when I'm doing a quiet line test, I try to put my fingers over the microphone and then keep them very still.

Kind regards,
Walter
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coolsnakeman

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #11 on: July 27, 2009, 06:47:24 PM »

Cheers kitz and walter. I have a feeling the engineer is going to TOK and i am going to be hit with a nasty bill. I was informed by complaints to contact faults about this so i have to start somewhere. If my needs are not met then its back to complaints to claim the money back. May not be to easy to do but i will try my best. Cheers again guys for your knowledge and i will keep you updated.

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coolsnakeman

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2009, 07:12:52 PM »

I have decided not to go ahead with the engineer for tomorrow cause the chances are i will be charged and nothing will be done so i have created a new plan. Originally i was going to go to virgin media but i have called them to find out i can't get virgin media cause i live in a new build so that is out the window. So i have cancelled with sky and requested a Mac code and i am going to go with BT and complain to them about slow speeds. Hopefully because i have broadband with BT they will actually push to get the cabling changed for me as i was advised by the girl from BT retail they would probably do more. Plus i have a friend that works for BT broadband higher tech support so that will come in handy for an engineer ;D
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kitz

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2009, 02:47:23 PM »

May be an idea to mention to the engineer when he comes that you are a bit concerned about the charges.. and make sure you stress that you have done everything you can yourself to try an eliminate problems with your internal wiring and tested from the master socket etc.

Then offer Tea & Biccies..   I believe that a bacon butty trick has also been sucessfully used a few times too ;)

I'm nor sure if its worth mentioning possible moisture/aluminium... some engineers like it if you know a bit and open up.. others may see it that youre being a bit smart and trying to tell them their job :/

Good Luck.
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kitz

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Re: Aluminium from Exchange to CAB
« Reply #14 on: July 31, 2009, 02:52:43 PM »

Wooooooah just seen this.

Quote
Hopefully because i have broadband with BT they will actually push to get the cabling changed for me as i was advised by the girl from BT retail they would probably do more.

That is false.. in fact if OFCOM hears of it, then who ever said it could be in serious trouble.
BT Broadband is a completely separate section of BT.. all the different departments are chinese walled.

BT Openreach who are in charge of 'the final mile' have nothing to do with BT Retail (BT Broadband) and BTB are NOT allowed to imply that they do.
As Ezzer will confirm, most often the engineer doesnt even have any idea who the ISP or Telco is, he just gets issued a job to investigate.
BT Openreach are not allowed.. nor do they give special preference to BT Broadband customers.

Who ever said that to you.. it was probably just a ploy to get you to sign up.. and its not true.
Youd stand more chance with one of the better ISPs than BTB because at least they have an understanding of how adsl works.. and will push BTw harder.  Once you get with BTB, you may find that their support is not perhaps able to do what was promised.
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