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Author Topic: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables  (Read 1038 times)

Andrew Broughton

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‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« on: April 25, 2019, 11:22:15 am »

Discussion with a colleague; he believes that a multi cable will corkscrew when wrapped or handled improperly, whereas I feel that a badly manufactured cable will corkscrew on its own, and it doesn’t matter how it’s wrapped (unless it’s wrapped in a 2” circle or something ridiculous)
I’ve seen the same cable type and brand all used together, and 1 will corkscrew where others don’t.

Cable manufacturers sites seem to support my theory since they talk about how some cables are made cheaply and will corkscrew easily when the inner conductors can move separately from the outer jacket. However, they are usually trying to push their braided cables as the solution...

Thoughts?


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« Last Edit: April 25, 2019, 03:47:20 pm by Andrew Broughton »
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Riley Casey

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2019, 11:30:50 am »

Not just " made cheaply".  I threw away a thousand feet of Belden individually jacketed paired snake many years ago after if started corkscrewing at the ends.  It was an early attempt from Belden at IJP cable apparently and presumably they figured it out but I didn't bother to try their newer versions.

Brian Adams

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2019, 02:00:50 pm »

I work often with a company that has a snake that's corkscrewed really badly. However, it used to be a 250'/30' hardwired split, but a few years ago he cut off the long trunk and now it's a 30'/30' split. Both 30' tails are now super corkscrewed, but the long trunk he cut off is fine. The difference is that the long piece gets figure-eighted into a trunk, whereas the tails usually just get stuffed into their trunk however they'll fit.

This particular snake was made by a well-known company, but it's likely not the highest quality materials. In any case, I think there might be some truth to both sides of your question, Andrew. Coil a cheap cable well and it might never corkscrew, coil a good cable badly and it might. Either way, if you take care of your cables you'll minimize the chances of things like that happening.
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Jeff Robinson

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2019, 02:26:50 pm »

Discussion with a colleague; he believes that a multi cable will corkscrew when wrapped or handled improperly, whereas I feel that a badly manufactured cable will corkscrew on its own, and it doesn’t matter how it’s wrapped (unless it’s wrapped in a 2” circle or something ridiculous)
I’ve seen the same cable type and brand all used together, and 1 will corkscrew where others don’t.

Cable manufacturers sites seem to support my theory since they talk about how some cables are made cheaply and will corkscrew easily when the inner conductors can move desperately from the outer jacket. However, they are usually trying to push their braided cables as the solution...

Thoughts?

Hi Andrew

Cable construction is key to how to handle it. When the cable conductors are bonded to the jacket (most SO/SJO variations are made this way), for hand winding over/under will prevent torsion that causes corkscrewing (I still have cables >40 years old, but then I am anal about this). Elbow wrap guaranties a short life. Some handy manufacturer links:

https://muellergroup.net/downloads/
https://www.sabcable.com/pdfs/white-papers/FAQ_Properly_Selecting_and_Installing_Continuous_Flex_Cables.pdf
http://www.lappusa.com/PDF/engineeringspecguide2014.pdf
https://www.igus.com/info/chainflex-information
https://www.tpcwire.com/products/wire-cable/reeling-cables
https://www.nexans.us/eservice/US-en_US/navigate_-26/Nexans_USA.html

I have bought cables from all these manufacturers over the last 30+ years of selling for industrial applications.
I have not bought from this outfit:
https://www.iewc.com/resources/technical-guide/cable-installation-guidelines

HTH,
Jeff Robinson
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Corey Scogin

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2019, 03:11:48 pm »

I have a cheap extension cord that has corkscrewed so much that it's nearly unusable. Luckily it's short.
Similar power cabling purchased from the same big box store near the same time period has been fine (I'm not 100% sure it was the same brand).
Both sets of cables felt normal when purchased. Both were stored and used similarly.

I think the corkscrew issue is likely most often related to manufacturing defects or poor design.
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2019, 03:53:36 pm »


I think the corkscrew issue is likely most often related to manufacturing defects or poor design.

But were you willing to pay for good design?
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Corey Scogin

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2019, 05:58:35 pm »

But were you willing to pay for good design?

Sure but paying more doesn't necessarily mean better design. I've purchased plenty of similar cheap power cables that have held up nicely.
One can't exactly judge how a given cable will perform long term just by looking at it even if you can look at its cross-section.
There's also always the analysis time + extra money spent on finding a good product that may or may not pay off. Sometimes grabbing a cable from a local chain hardware store is the most logical thing to do.
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Will Knight

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2019, 01:40:54 am »

I recently tossed out 2 cords of different lengths purchased from big box stores within the last 5 years, corkscrewed so badly, they literally tore / split at several points in the line.  Yet an SJO equivalent type cord purchased back in 2008 when I lived in Japan has miraculously held up all these years just fine, even after my son "arm-rolled" the cord several times (until I noticed and taught him otherwise).  Guess as with everything else, it just depends.  And the Japan cord was no pricier than those 2 cords I tossed. 
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Keith Broughton

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #8 on: April 26, 2019, 07:13:50 am »

I'm in the camp of improper or cheap manufacture.
I use a 250' multicore that I built in the late 80s and it has been coiled any number of ways and is still perfect.
When I did get some corkscrew problems with another brand of cable, the supplier admitted it was a "factory" problem and replaced them.
That said, if a cable is constantly coiled "one way" and not unwound correctly, and (or) has a cheap outer layer,  it will twist up a bit but should not look like a telephone handset cord!

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Bob Faulkner

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Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #9 on: April 26, 2019, 10:27:36 am »

Discussion with a colleague; he believes that a multi cable will corkscrew when wrapped or handled improperly, whereas I feel that a badly manufactured cable will corkscrew on its own, and it doesn’t matter how it’s wrapped (unless it’s wrapped in a 2” circle or something ridiculous)
I’ve seen the same cable type and brand all used together, and 1 will corkscrew where others don’t.

Cable manufacturers sites seem to support my theory since they talk about how some cables are made cheaply and will corkscrew easily when the inner conductors can move separately from the outer jacket. However, they are usually trying to push their braided cables as the solution...

Thoughts?


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I think it's an issue with manufacturing and product design (or lack-of).  And perhaps brought on with the "over the forearm" speed-coiling some people (volunteers?) will employ when helping to strike. 

I've had a few "cheap" power cords cork-screw, but what I did notice was the 14ga and smaller (physical size) power cables were really bad with that issue.  None of the SOOW cord I use (10ga, 12ga) has ever done that, and shows no signs of it starting.
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ProSoundWeb Community

Re: ‘Corkscrewed’ multicables
« Reply #9 on: April 26, 2019, 10:27:36 am »


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