Cable lacing is not commonly understood by people that are not in the telecom business.
It is truly an art form that was taught through on-the-job training without any existing instruction manuals™ as it was simply handed down from generation to generation of quality installers.
Cable lacing is seen in older central offices and larger PBX environments. It is a manner of organizing power cable for aesthetics on an engineered DC Power job site.
Different Styles of Stitching of Cables
Most common on telecom Central Office installation or DC Power engineering are the Kansas City stitch and the Chicago stitch. Lacing twine does not create obstructions along the length of the cable, avoiding the handling problems common with cables dressed with plastic or velcro cable ties.
Cable lacing with the #9 waxed twine is used to bind together a group of cables using a series of the above-mentioned stitching styles. Lacing was widely adopted in equipment installation in Central Office Environments. Central Office Power Cables are laced into smaller bundles and referred to by the appearance of the final product, either branching upwards resembling a “tree” or downwards resembling a cascading “waterfall”.
This isn’t done for any structural support but primarily for aesthetics; in order to position the cabling, and to form & shape the mass of cables/bundles. Maintaining a tight, neat and permanent appearance is the end goal and unlike zip-ties the lacing is easier to remove, so replacing cables is simplified, without a lot of cutting.
Why is It Important to Have an Organized Cable Run?
In a Central Office installation it is a quick sign of professional work to see the mass amounts of cable runs lined up neatly in place and in order. in an effort to save time plastic cable ties became an easy way to bundle and caught on as the most time practical approach during installation. but again, as a sign of professional installation and now commonly required on sites is the use of lacing cable with #9 waxed polyester twine. It is commonly the differentiating factor at quick glance of a job well done.
Some large companies are taking interest in how laced cables can reduce the incidence of diver cables and choked cables common when using cable ties. This, combined with careful attention to cabling bend radiuses, can improve the performance of the cable, resulting in fewer faults and more satisfied customers.
This cable lacing, securing and positioning dc power cable with the lacing twine is an art form. One must practice and learn from an experienced tradesman, the different types and styles of knots and twines until the desired end result is produced. The more skilled you become, the faster and easier this procedure becomes.
Benefits for the Installers and Telecom Service Providers
The telecom providers take pride in their central offices and as more and more cabling is required as equipment is added and re-configured the importance of the cable organization becomes quickly apparent. When done correctly, this will set your contractors business apart from the hastily installed job.
I would love to see examples of some tight knot cable organization, and examples of your style. Lets see what you got!!