What Is M13486 Wire?

M13486 wire is a special-purpose wire originally intended for low-tension military applications. The original wire specification is for a synthetic rubber insulation Hypalon manufactured by Du Pont. M13486 electrical wire is robust, tough, and intended for use in vehicles, aircraft, and ships. It's extremely resistant to most chemicals, oils, and fungi. Although the updated specification dates back to 1968, this heavy-duty wire remains extremely popular. M13486 is one of a range of military specification wires carried by AWC.

15 items

  • M13486/1-9
    $0.00 / 1000 FT
    • Approx LBS/MFT: 104
    • AWG Size: 8
    • Cond. Material: Tinned Copper
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  • M13486/1-10
    $0.00 / 1000 FT
    • Approx LBS/MFT: 152
    • AWG Size: 6
    • Cond. Material: Tinned Copper
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  • M13486/1-11
    $0.00 / 1000 FT
    • Approx LBS/MFT: 221
    • AWG Size: 4
    • Cond. Material: Tinned Copper
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  • M13486/1-12
    $0.00 / 1000 FT
    • Approx LBS/MFT: 352
    • AWG Size: 2
    • Cond. Material: Tinned Copper
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  • M13486/1-14
    $0.00 / 1000 FT
    • Approx LBS/MFT: 478
    • AWG Size: 1/0
    • Cond. Material: Tinned Copper
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  • M13486/1-15
    $0.00 / 1000 FT
    • Approx LBS/MFT: 586
    • AWG Size: 2/0
    • Cond. Material: Tinned Copper
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  • M13486/1-17
    $0.00 / 1000 FT
    • Approx LBS/MFT: 871
    • AWG Size: 4/0
    • Cond. Material: Tinned Copper
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M13486 Wire Construction

While the wire specification allows for single and two conductor constructions. The single conductor construction is more common. The specification allows for two variations, one with a sheath or jacket and the other with a combined sheath and insulation.


The conductor uses stranded, tinned copper wire. A unique feature is that the specification requires a minimum strand quantity for each American Wire Gauge (AWG) size, and it also specifies the strand AWG size. Copper is soft drawn or annealed to ensure flexibility and durability in use.


A mechanical or chemical separator is placed over the conductor to prevent deterioration of the synthetic rubber insulation and to assist wire stripping for all sizes except 18 and 20 AWG.


The wire insulation is a chlorosulfonated polyethylene (CSPE) synthetic rubber. The synthetic rubber comes from raw polyethylene that's treated with chlorine and sulfur dioxide, usually under ultraviolet (UV) radiation, together with chlorosulfonyl compounds. This surface treatment improves the vulcanization properties of synthetic rubber.

M13486 Applications

The tough synthetic insulation resists abrasion and is waterproof. It withstands chemical attacks and oils, coolant, and hydraulic fluids. The military uses this wire for vehicles including wheeled and tracked military vehicles, trailers, and special-purpose ground-based vehicles. Other applications include military aircraft and naval vessels. M13486 wire remains flexible at temperatures down to -65ºC and the insulation can handle a maximum temperature of 90ºC. You can use the wire on external vehicular installations.

M13486 Specifications

Military Specifications: MIL-DTL-13486/1
Chemical Resistance: Excellent
Oils and hydraulic fluid resistance: Good
Mold and fungus resistance: No fungal growth
Wheather resistance: Waterproof
Maximum temperature rating: 90°C
Minimum temperature rating: -65°C
Voltage: Low tension
Order quantity: Minimum order quantity is 100 feet
Color: Black
Size: From 20 AWG to 4/0 AWG size

Can You Use M13486 Wiring Indoors?

This wire doesn't conform to National Electrical Code (NEC) requirements for use in buildings. It isn't rated for domestic and commercial AC voltages and does not have the appropriate fire and flame retardant properties.

Can You Use M13486 Wire on Vehicles?

M13486 wire is suitable for low-tension vehicle circuits, and its robust synthetic rubber coating resists abrasion, dirt, and oils.