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What Components Make Up a Cable Support System?

Cable support systems are necessary for several reasons. For a plant engineering project that features several cables, you need to support them efficiently. Although there are several support systems for cables, knowing which components make up cable support is essential. If you’re finding it difficult to choose a support system for cables because you’re unsure which components to prioritize or which elements belong to each support system, read this article to get all the information you require.

What is a cable support system?

A cable support system is a mechanical support that engineers use to collect cables and store them in open areas. It is a component that you may use to support electrical, insulated wires that carry power between a source and an application, such as for programmable logic controllers. What Components Make Up a Cable Support System?  

What are 5 ideal ways to support a cable run?

There are many different cable support systems that engineers use to support cable runs. You may have heard of five ideal ways to support cable runs: cable runways, center rail systems, wire baskets, bridle rings, and wireways.

What is a cable runway?

If you’ve heard of a cable runway, you will already know that it’s a cable support system that supports horizontal and backbone cables from entry to exit. Engineers use cable runways to route data-communications wires since they are ideal for areas that have many cables.

What is a cable center rail system?

Cable center rail systems are a type of cable support system that is cost-effective and easy to install. This system features a center rail component with parallel metal support rungs that extend from it and can be installed in hallways.

What is a wire basket?

For flexibility and ease of modification, wire baskets are the ideal cable support system for your project. You may already know that wire basket cable support systems are elongated baskets that stretch between the source and the application. They are made of metal support wiring components that support cables efficiently.

What is a bridle ring?

A bridle ring is a cable support system with ring and hook components. This system is ideal for small bundles of wires or small branch runs, and you may already be aware that newer models offer a bigger surface for bearing cables. 

What are wireways?

A wireway is a cable support system used in the electrical industry to protect wires. You can use their metallic construction, a wraparound style, to support and safeguard sensitive cables inside a manufacturing or engineering plant. 

What are the various types of cable tray supports? 

Three of the main cable tray supports include ladder cable trays, solid bottom supports, and c-channel cable supports. Looking for more information about these? Continue reading.

What is a ladder cable tray, and what are its components?

Ladder cable trays are the same cable support system as cable runways. The main components of ladder cable trays are straight-length rungs that make it easy to change cables while not modifying other parts. You will find that they have no problems supporting heavy cables and facilitating airflow.

What is a solid bottom cable support system, and when should you use one?

Solid bottom cable support systems can span between five and 12 feet. Engineers use them for routing cabling in the data-communications industry as it’s ideal for cabling with small diameters.  Solid bottom cable support systems have solid metallic bases and can come with metal covers. You can also get solid bottom cable support systems that have cable protection properties, which are available in different materials such as fiberglass and non-corrosive materials. There are also solid bottom cable support systems that feature corrugated bottoms. Their bases are sheet metal that manufacturers press and fit into the cable support.  What’s more, you can also get ventilated corrugated bottom cable support systems, which mitigates overheating.

What is a c-channel cable support?

C-channel cable support systems are c-shaped, as the name suggests. They provide a pathway for cabling and support cabling across long distances. Some c-channel cable support systems are perforated, permitting easy air circulation.  What Components Make Up a Cable Support System?

Which components can you get to install a cable support system?

As a plant engineer, you may know that there are a few essential parts to support or splice your cable support system. Are you familiar with some of these?

1.  Fittings such as elbows 

There are a couple of elbow fitting components that you should be aware of. The first is a horizontal elbow (45) that engineers use to alter a cable tray’s direction by 45 degrees. The second is a horizontal elbow (90) that engineers use to change a cable tray’s direction by 90 degrees. You also have vertical elbows that you can use to alter the direction of a cable tray and direct the route to a different plane. Tee connections are another example of a component that you can use to join several cable trays on the same plane and situated at 90-degree angles.  There are also riser bends, which include internal and external risers. Engineers use these components to alter the cable tray’s direction and guide it from lower to upper levels or upper to lower levels.

2.  Supports, including wall mount and ceiling mount supports

You can connect a cable support system to a wall or a ceiling using wall-mount components, and ceiling mount supports, respectively. These are affixed to the wall or ceiling and efficiently support the cable tray systems' weight.

3.  Splices such as adjustable or standard splice plates

If you need to join two cable tray sections to each other, using splice places is an option for this. You can choose between adjustable, angle, and straight connector components. 

4.  Covers, including solid and peaked covers

Using a cable tray cover component is an ideal option to protect your cables and ensure they don’t sustain any mechanical damage. Solid covers offer maximum-level mechanical protection for your cables and reduce overheating. Peaked covers 

5.  Clips for conduit cable support systems

You can use clip components if you need to convert from a conduit cable support system to a cable tray support system. What Components Make Up a Cable Support System?

Why are cable support calculations vital?

You’ll find that cable tray support calculations are critical for your project. There are a few reasons you should ensure that you make the correct calculations. Your cable tray size may not be enough to support your cables, and they can get damaged due to overheating or unsuitable handling. Since cable tray supporting systems support the structural integrity of your cable management, installations, and maintenance, ensure that you carry out the correct calculations.

How is cable tray support calculated?

You can calculate the number of cables you can support with your cable tray by using formulas that acknowledge cable distances, the size of your cable tray, the bracket type, and the number of cables you have. One such formula that you can use is the following: Fill ratio for cable tray = cable cross section / (divided by) tray cross section Alternatively, you can calculate the cable tray support by acknowledging the types and number of cables that you need and using the 50% ratio when filling your cable tray. This means the maximum number of wires should equal 50% of the cross-section of the cable tray.

What are some other joining components that make up a cable support system?

Keep in mind that there are also other joining components that you can use to affix your cable support system efficiently. Some of the main joining components are threaded rods, roofing bolts, and support brackets.

What are threaded rods?

Threaded rods are a rod that engineers use to affix or hand a cable tray to a ceiling. You may use a threaded rod with an anchor to fasten it to a horizontal support or strut channel. This component features a nut and a washer.

How can you choose which threaded rod to use?

You can select a threaded rod component by factoring in how much the cables weigh and how much the cable tray weighs.

What are roofing bolts?

A roofing bolt has a bulbous bolt head and features a washer and nut. You can use them to fasten cable trays securely and set up your cable support system.

How should you use roofing bolts when installing cable trays?

Keep in mind that when you use roofing bolts, its bulbous head should be situated within the tray and that the nuts and washers are placed outside of the tray. Using this approach will make sure the insulation of the cables remains intact and undamaged.

What are support brackets?

You can use support bracket components to support a cable tray when affixing it to a wall or a ceiling. A few examples of support brackets, such as wall brackets and cantilever brackets.

Get the right components for your cable support system

With the right components, you can easily set up any cabling support. If you’re unsure where to get the best quality components, or you want to find out more about the components that make up a cable support system, the answer is to look at Pro Support Solutions and MEFA’s product offering. We offer specialized plant engineering products that make setting up cable supports effortless. Go to Pro Support Solutions for more information and choose your components to get your project underway.

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