Pulling cable is more likely than not going to involve a significant amount of force. Cables are designed to handle a certain amount of pulling tension during installation and in everyday wear and tear, but cable lubricant can make a big difference in reducing the stresses on your crew and your cable.
What type of cable lubricant, how much to use and how to apply, all depend on the kind of installation you will be doing. Regardless a little more cable lubricant is usually better than a little less.
Cable lubricant is a must-have if you do not want to ruin a cable during pulling. And it will save you a great deal of time and money during installation. Cable installers use a number of methods to apply cable lubricant sufficiently. How and how much cable lubricant is to be used depends greatly on the type of job you are undertaking: small wire pulls through tubing will require relatively less cable lubricant and the initial pull with cable lubricant will be sufficient to coat the inside. Alternatively, a broad electrical cable in an underground channel spread over a several meters, with bends and an abrasive surface, will require liberal use of cable lubricant through the pull.
Pre-lubricating narrow and short run conduits is a great way of maximizing your cable lubricant. It reduces wasted lubricant, but what method you choose to adopt can deliver differing results. The old ‘rag soaked in cable lubricant’ method is simple and easy; simply soak a rag thoroughly in cable lubricant, attach it to the pulling role and pull it across the length of the conduit. That should be enough for simple jobs. Beware, however, that if the rag is dry by the time it reaches the end of the pull, it can leave your cable at risk. Repeating the exercise in this instance may be a better idea.
For downward facing access holes, simply pouring cable lubricant is a feasible way of reducing friction. If its viscosity is sufficiently low, the cable lubricant will be pulled down by gravity in a vertical channel and potentially coat significant parts of the tunnel. This may need to be supplemented by an implement which can spread the lubricant evenly across the entirety of the pull.
For large cable pulling jobs, the approach to using cable lubricant is decidedly more industrial. Cable lubricant is applied judiciously as the cable is pulled gradually. Every inch of the cable is coated as it enters, either by hand or by machinery, ensuring that no part of the cable is starved of cable lubricant or can be damaged by friction. This approach is used for large cables to be pulled across uneven pulling spaces, for cables which are extremely sensitive to pulling forces and heat damage.
Not just cable lubricant methods, be sure to get the most appropriate cable lubricant you need. Our cable lubricant range comes in a variety of forms. Getting the one most suitable for you will mean saving on time, money and effort.