Falconer Electronics, Inc (FEI) is known for Wire Harness Assembly Excellence & Reliable Performance. Our team at FEI assembles custom wire harnesses in a variety of lengths, wire gauges, and colors. Depending on the need, the length of our wires can vary from as small as 3 inches to as long as required. We also offer a variety of wire gauges, from a minimum of 24 gauge up through the larger 00 cable sizes. As a result, we can implement into our harnesses to best meet the needs of our customers.

Our mission is to produce superior wire harness assembly built to our customer’s specifications and expectations. With over 30 years of experience, our expert staff will produce wire harness solutions at the most economical cost while maintaining the highest quality of workmanship and on-line delivery. Especially important, customers consistently rate our accuracy of products and services at near perfect levels.

Wiring Harness News: Falconer Electronics

The team at Falconer Electronics is extremely excited to announce that we made the front page of the most recent Wiring Harness News! 

If you are a Wire Harness fanatic like we are and you subscribe to the Wiring Harness News, you will find this article front & center on the latest issue. 

Click here to view: 

Streamlining Inbound Marketing:

Falconer Electronics Develops In-house Quote Tool

 

 

Below includes the text of the article: 

Streamlining Inbound Marketing:

Falconer Electronics Develops In-house Quote Tool

Falconer Electronics has been a successful manufacturer of custom Wire Harnesses and Ground Straps since 1985. Yet, like many companies in the contract manufacturing arena, attracting new customers who fit their core competency became a challenge. As Roger Hall, Founder and President of Falconer Electronics explained, “There is a tendency to try to be everything to everybody. Someone knocks on your door, you respond, and you end up chasing things that aren’t really in your wheelhouse.” By embracing eCommerce and Inbound Marketing strategies, however, the company is changing this tendency, and focusing on its core strengths.

“To start, we decided to make an investment in creating two robust software tools to help streamline the purchasing process for our customers,” Roger revealed. The Ground Strap Quote Builder and the Wire Harness Estimator were created as a result. Because of the simplicity of their design, and the relative few inputs for configuration, the Ground Strap Quote Builder was an easier task. “Customers input data regarding specific requirements, and then receive a near-instant email quote on those customizations. The entire five-step process is simple and takes about 60 seconds or less,” he outlined. The five inputs are: RoHS compliance (yes/no), width and length of braided wire, A and B side terminal selection, terminal orientation (selection from seven illustrations), and finally, the specific quality needed. The Quote Builder includes video instruction with each step.

The Wire Harness Estimator works in a similar fashion, but as Roger advised, “Due to the near infinite number of variables in building a wire harness assembly, this tool provides an estimate only.” The tool allows the customer to enter their wire harness assembly information which includes adding actual manufacturer part numbers into the program. Once complete, the user receives an estimate instantly via email. “This creates immediate engagement with the customer,” he elaborated, “which typically converts to a Request for Quote soon after.”

According to Roger, the tool works great for new customers who want to compare prices with their current vendors. In addition, new product developers, engineers and those in purchasing who need a ballpark price promptly, find the Wire Harness Estimator extremely helpful. The development experience has been helpful to Falconer as well. “By creating these tools, it’s really helped us narrow down what we do and given us a more concise focus,” he continued.

“As a wire harness or ground strap assembly manufacturer, you don’t have a proprietary product per se,” Falconer Electronics eCommerce Consultant Curt Anderson suggested, “but you have a proprietary process.” He refers to what they are doing with these tools as, “scaling your proprietary process,” and he added that, this fall, Falconer will piggyback with some marketing firms to do workshops with other companies in their area. “In the workshops, we’ll be exploring how these tools help create a sales funnel to narrow focus so that you’re not chasing leads or product lines that aren’t a good fit.”

Curt explained Falconer is really trying to change the old school, back and forth, quote process. He sincerely hopes their efforts are a beacon for others. “Our goal is to encourage other U.S. contract manufacturers to embrace eCommerce strategies, as well as explore offering an online quoting tool to help reduce the cumbersome RFQ process.” He is convinced that allowing customers to make an easy and efficient buying decision lends to a healthy competitive advantage. “Especially as we all work together to strengthen the foothold of USA Made products in this highly competitive global market,” he concluded.

If you would like to see the tools in action, visit the Falconer Electronics website at www.falconerelectronics.com, or email [email protected] [email protected]

Crimping wires is a core function for all Wire Harness ManufacturersConsequently, at Falconer Electronics we like to say that crimping wires with strict accuracy and precision is an art form. 

Developing a highly skilled staff takes years. It requires a keen eye along with a steady presence and laser focus when crimping wires. 

As terminals and connectors continue to decrease in size, crimping wires with precision demands skill, dedication and stamina. 

Our team works closely with each customer to ensure that all crimped wires comply with industry standards and customer requirements.

Many factors contribute to crimping wires that meet rigorous industry standards.

Customers provide the necessary drawings and instructions with specific details for sizes, crimp height and pull strength.

Additionally, wire insulation and connector compatibility also both serve as critical functions for successfully crimping wires.

Above all, our goal is to ensure product integrity with electrical requirements on each and every wire harness assembly.

Crimping Wires to IPC Standards 

Crimping Wires at Falconer Electronics

Crimping Wires at Falconer Electronics

With over 30 years of experience in cable and wire harness assembly, crimping wires is a daily activity that our team takes tremendous pride in performing meticulously.

In a previous Wire Harness blog post, we discussed IPC Wire Harness Assembly standards.

The IPC/WHMA-A-620C serves as the only industry-consensus international Wire Harness Assembly Standard for the performance and acceptance of cable and wire harness assemblies. 

As an IPC certified Wire Harness Manufacturer, Falconer Electronics strictly follows the IPC/WHMA-A-620: Requirements and Acceptance for Cable and Wire Harness Assemblies.

To learn more, click on these links below: 

IPC = Association Connecting Electronics Industries: http://www.ipc.org/

WHMA = Wire Harness Manufacturing Association: http://whma.org/

Crimping Wires Do’s & Don’ts

The IPC/WHMA-A-620 standard provides the necessary guidance on crimping wires that are acceptable vs defective.

Here are a few examples of Wire Harness Assembly Do’s and Don’ts: 

Crimping Wire Do’s:

  • Insulation crimp tabs fully wrap as well as support insulation
  • Insulation fully enters and extends past the insulation crimp tabs
  • Prepared wires must also be in solid working condition – cannot be scraped, nicked, severed or damaged
  • Wires retained in the connector
  • Crimp indent is centered
  • Insulation crimp must also provide a minimum side report of 180 degrees 

Crimping Wire Don’ts:

  • Wires should not be flattened, untwisted, buckled, kinked or otherwise deformed.  
  • Insulation should show no signs of pinching, pulling, fraying, discoloration, charring as well as burning.
  • The insulation crimp also needs to fully support and wrap insulation without causing any damage or breaking the insulation.
  • Broken insulation can expose wires causing safety issues as well as potential hazards.
  • No cuts or breaks in the insulation
  • Insulation also cannot be charred
  • Insulation melted into the wire strands
  • Wire not secured by crimp
  • Contact has visible cracks and fractures
  • No Birdcaging – in other words, no wire separation

However, these are just a handful of the requirements.  

To learn more about the Wire Harness Manufacturer’s Association and A-620 Standards, please click here: http://whma.org/training-materials/a-620a-standards

Reference: IPC/WHMA – Requirements and Acceptance for Cable and Wire Harness Assemblies

Wrapping It Up 

Lastly, to learn more about Wire Harness Manufacturing, check out these helpful links: 

In addition, check out these helpful links on Ground Straps: 

Falconer Electronics has served as a Custom Wire Harness Assembly Manufacturer since 1985. Producing high quality wire harness assemblies takes a tremendous amount of time, skill and expertise.

However, many companies do not possess the experience, skilled staff or proper equipment to manufacture wire harness assemblies internally. Therefore, when selecting a custom wire harness manufacturer to partner with, it is crucial to team up with a company that you can trust. In addition, delivery times, quality, reliability and quick turnaround play key factors with your decision as well.

Custom Wire Harness Assembly

Crimping Wires at Falconer Electronics

There are many functions of a custom wire harness assembly that continues to be primarily manufactured by hand. Due to the challenging task of assembling cables and wires, it is difficult to fully automate the process. This is particularly common when dealing with high mix and low volume projects. 

All sorts of enjoyable activities go on at a Wire Harness Manufacturer. For example, Wire Harness Manufacturers handle a wide variety of custom wire harness assembly services including:

  • Cutting individual wires
  • Crimping individual wires
  • Twisting wires
  • Soldering wires
  • Applying heat shrink
  • Crimping terminals
  • Sleeving individual wires 
  • Assembling wires into housing and connectors
  • Plus much more

The Custom Wire Harness Assembly process is typically not economical to outsource overseas to foreign competitors. Especially since many companies rely on short lead times and quick turnaround. Low volume wire harness assemblies are difficult to predict demand.

Teaming up with a custom manufacturer in the U.S provides the necessary flexibility to receive product on time while not overstocking. Turning over inventory quickly while maintaining low inventory levels drastically helps improve your profitability. In addition, speed and agility lends a tremendous competitive advantage to your company. 

Quality Control with Custom Wire Harness Assembly

Producing high quality wire harnesses is a core competency and strength at Falconer Electronics as we enter our fourth decade.  Testing and Quality Control of every product is an absolute top priority. Customers consistently rank our services at near perfect levels. Our company commitment is driven by producing the highest quality of product every time. 

Companies have trusted the team at Falconer Electronics throughout many industries such as auto, rail, military products, health care, industrial work lights and much more. 

Please contact our customer service team with any questions. 

Wrapping It Up

Lastly, to learn more about Wire Harness Manufacturing, check out these helpful links: 

In addition, check out these helpful links on Ground Straps: 

 

 

Wire Harness Safety

Welcome to National Electrical Safety Month. Yes, May serves as the month to promote National Electrical Safety. Of course, we all should adhere to electrical safety each and every day. As a Wire Harness Manufacturer, we can certainly attest to the importance of Electrical Safety. Especially when it comes to Wire Harness Safety which plays a critical role with electronics. 

First, let’s look a little deeper at Electrical Safety. For companies in electronics manufacturing, contributing to consumer safety is paramount. Numerous agencies and organizations exist that are dedicated to electrical and workplace safety.

For example, the Electrical Safety Foundation International (EFSI) is the premier non-profit organization dedicated exclusively to promoting electrical safety for home, school and the workplace. EFSI founded National Electrical Safety Month. As an organization, EFSI promotes electrical safety in the spirit of bringing awareness and education for businesses as well as all consumers.

Below includes the National Electrical Safety Month Safety Advocate Guide which can be downloaded by clicking here

SHARP Program

Participating in the SHARP program also supports our company policy on safety. The acronym SHARP stands for Safety & Health Achievement Recognition Program. The SHARP program works with small businesses who have made a commitment to operate an exemplary injury and illness prevention program. There are many benefits with belonging to the SHARP program:

  • Protect employees from workplace safety and health hazards
  • Follow OSHA guidelines on safety best practices to protect workers
  • Boosting morale by creating a safe and dynamic work environment for employees
  • Reduce workplace injuries 

Wire Harness Safety

Wire Harness Safety

Let’s dig specifically into wire harness safety. Many companies find tremendous profit potential by outsourcing wire harness assembly services to custom Wire Harness Manufacturers.

Factors include efficiency, price, experience, as well as possessing the proper tools and resources. 

Another important factor that plays a role with a company deciding to outsource their wire assemblies includes safety as well. 

At Falconer Electronics, we are dedicated to ensuring the safety of our employees as well as all products that we produce.

Serving the electronics industry since 1985, our team has developed the experience and expertise to deliver products in the safest manner possible. 

In addition, Falconer Electronics exhausts every effort for accuracy and reliability.

For example, this includes instituting wire harness safety during the assembly process.

Furthermore using the proper equipment and tools to tackle each project is another significant benefit with creating a safe work environment. 

Over the past three decades, Falconer Electronics has teamed up with the top electrical vendors based on durability and reliability to provide safe products.

 Wire Harness Safety: IPC/WHMA-A-620 Standard 

Falconer Electronics also strictly follows industry guidelines and regulations for wire harness safety.

IPC/WHMA-A-620 serves as an industry standard that provides criteria for commonly used wire harness assemblies.

The standard is a “collection of visual Quality Acceptability Requirements for Cable, Wire and Harness Assemblies.”

Additionally, to learn more about the IPC/WHMA-A-620, click here:  http://www.ipc.org/ContentPage.aspx?pageid=IPC-WHMA-A-620

Let’s look at a few defects that hamper wire harness safety. For example, loose cables and wires can prove to be extremely dangerous. Yet, wire harness assemblies provide the necessary protection to contain loose wires. Also, handling the proper energy load is crucial. Otherwise a short can occur causing serious damage to the wire or even cause an electrical fire. 

A few other possible causes of defects:

  • Short circuiting of wires & cables
  • Damaged insulation
  • Overloading of electrical accessories
  • Conductor deformation
  • Wire separation 

Above all, any of these culprits can create an unwelcome or hazardous event.

Wire Harness Safety

Wrapping It Up

Lastly, to learn more about Wire Harness Manufacturing, check out these helpful links: 

In addition, check out these helpful links on Ground Straps: 

Following IPC Wire Harness Assembly Standards offers tremendous benefits for Wire Harness Manufacturers. 

The Wire Harness Manufacturer’s Association and the IPC (Association Connecting Electronics Industries) combined forces to create the “IPC/​WHMA-A-620A Requirements and Acceptance for Cable and Wire Harness Assemblies” which is an amazing resource for Wire Harness Manufacturers

The IPC/WHMA-A-620C serves as the only industry-consensus international Wire Harness Assembly Standard for the performance and acceptance of cable and wire harness assemblies. 

As you well know, manufacturing products based on strict industry standards creates a healthy competitive advantage. 

This also ensures high quality products which in turn creates satisfied customers. 

Consequently, manufacturing Wire Harness Assemblies falls in this category. 

Especially since Wire Harness Manufacturing comes with many challenges. 

There are many moving parts (no pun intended). 

In particular, electrical components keep getting smaller and smaller. 

This invites many demands for Wire Harness Manufacturers to stay current with proper crimp tools and equipment due to decreasing sizes. 

In addition, staff training also plays a critical role. 

As a result, keeping current with Wire Harness Assembly Standards keeps a company aligned with customer expectations. 

For that reason, closely following IPC/WHMA-A-620C Wire Harness Assembly Standards serves as an absolute top priority for Wire Harness Manufacturers

IPC/WHMA-A-620C: Wire Harness Assembly Standards 

IPC Wire Harness Assembly Standards

Creating a wire harness assembly without following a standardized guide could lead to disaster. 

Above all, poor assembly methods creates extremely unhappy customers. 

The guiding principle of the IPC Wire Harness Assembly standardization efforts include the following: 

  • Show relationship for Design for Manufacturability and Design for the Environment 
  • Minimize time to market 
  • Contain simple language 
  • Focus on end product performance
  • Include a feedback system on use and problems for future improvement 

Most importantly, the standard creates a consistency among manufacturers and purchasers. Maintaining a consistent level of acceptability helps prevent misunderstandings between parties. 

Additionally, the IPC standard follows all procedures to qualify for ANSI approval

Above all, this book deliver priceless information for seasoned veterans as well as those brand new to creating a wire harness.

For example, manufacturers, engineers and new product developers will find information in this book invaluable.

This book covers a wealth of topics including preparation, soldered and crimp terminations, insulation, slices and much more.

The IPC/​WHMA-A-620A provides helpful information on Wire Harness Manufacturing Terms and Definitions.

To learn more, click on this helpful link: Wire Harness Manufacturing Terms, Tools, and Tips of the Trade.

IPC Wire Harness Assembly Standards

Furthermore, this book offers guidance on the requirements and acceptance for cable and wire harness assemblies using Wire Harness Manufacturing Association Technical Guidelines.

The book explains proper methods of soldering and terminating wires. It also extensively covers electrical testing methods.

In addition, the book provides hundreds of helpful photos displaying clear details on acceptable results versus defective production.

If you or your company are new to producing wire harnesses, you will find the IPC/​WHMA-A-620A Requirements and Acceptance for Cable and Wire Harness Assemblies extremely beneficial. 

IPC EDGE Offers Online Video Training 

As a non-profit trade association, IPC now offers complete library of training videos for Wire Harness Manufacturers and companies performing Electronics Assembly.

Most importantly, this electronics assembly training video series is industry developed and award winning. 

The videos offers operator-level training in areas such as Hand Soldering, Wire Harness Assembly, ESD Control, Rework and Repair as well as IPC-A-610 Criteria. 

Furthermore, instructional videos from IPC serve as a powerful tool for basic training and orientation for new employees. Videos from the IPC EDGE learning portal can be viewed right on site at your facility or classroom. 

Meanwhile, click on each link to a preview on the IPCS Wire Harness Assembly Process on YouTube: 

56C – Wire Harness Assembly

 

58C – Wire Crimping

59C – Wire Preparation

62C – Connector Assembly

152C – Terminology Training for Wire Assembly

167C – Coaxial Cable Assembly

Finally, IPC EDGE offers other video training categories at IPC EDGE including the list below: 

  • Electronics Assembly Inspection
  • ESD Fundamentals
  • Hand Soldering and Rework – PTH and SMT 
  • Intro to Electronics Assembly (Pre-Employment Training)
  • Training & Reference Guides

Wrapping It Up

Lastly, to learn more about Wire Harness Manufacturing, check out these helpful links: 

In addition, check out these helpful links on Ground Straps: 

Wire Harness Manufacturing

Wire Harness Manufacturing is our foundation. It’s in our blood. Dating all the way back to 1985. The Team at Falconer Electronics Inc. (FEI) takes tremendous pride in manufacturing amazing products for our customers. In addition, as a Custom Wire Harness Manufacturer, assembling and delivering superior products is our mission. Actually, we are wire harness geeks so we call it our Crusade.

Wire Harness Manufacturing: Steps for Success

  1. Superior Quality
  2. Maintaining Impeccable Customer Scorecards
  3. Fast Turnaround Times
  4. Competitive Prices
  5. Highly Skilled and Seasoned Staff
  6. FREE Instant Estimates (click here)
  7. High Productivity
  8. Agility and Flexibility
  9. Company Culture Dedicated to Customer Satisfaction
  10. Lastly, a Commitment to Safety

The Secret to Success

Our wire harness assemblies can be found all over the country. Especially in the following places:

  • As you walk around Walmart or Lowe’s, you will walk past our wire harnesses. They can be found in the commercial power strips and electrical retail fixture displays.
  • If you drove past a semi-truck today (or if one went flying past you). Our wires may have been waving to you.
  • Our wires are in some dentist offices (not during a root canal – we refuse to contribute to that type of pain).
  • If you rode on a train today. Our wires may also have been riding along with you.
  • Another example includes our proprietary line of magnetic work lights and trouble lights
  • ATM Machines
  • Heating Systems
  • Handicap Accessible Transport Vehicles
  • Electrical Signage at retail cash registers as well as self check-out kiosks 
  • Along with Much More…

Try Our Custom Wire Harness Estimator

Receive an Estimate Sent Directly to Your Email Within Seconds

Helpful Guide of Wire Harness Manufacturing Terms, Tools and Tips 

Are you new to the Wire Harness process? Our team created a helpful guide below.

The Wire Harness Manufacturing Guide includes:

  • Wire Harness Terms
  • Tools
  • Tips of the Trade

Additionally, the list below includes a number of Wire Harness Manufacturing Terms and definitions.

Wire Harness Manufacturing IPC/WHMA-A-620 Standard 

All of the Wire Harness Manufacturing Terms below are from the IPC/WHMA-A-620. This serves as an industry standard. Therefore, providing criteria for commonly used wire harness assemblies.  Consequently, the standard sets a “collection of visual Quality Acceptability Requirements for Cable, Wire and Harness Assemblies.”

To learn more about the IPC/WHMA-A-620, click here.

Wire Harness Manufacturing Terms and Definitions

American Wire Gage (AWG)

A standard system for designating wire diameter. Primarily used in the U.S.

Bellmouth

The raised portion at the front and/or back of the wire barrel crimp that provides a gradual entrance and exit for the wire strands without causing damage.

Birdcaging

Wire Strands that have separated from the normal lay of the wire.

Braid

Woven bare metallic or tinned copper wire used as shielding for wires and cables and as ground wire for batteries or heavy industrial equipment. Also, a woven fibrous protective outer covering over a conductor or cable.

Cable

A group of individually insulated conductors in the twisted or parallel configuration under a common sheath.

Cable Assembly

A cable with plugs or connectors attached.

Conductor

An uninsulated wire or the conductor of an insulated wire suitable for carrying electrical current.

Conduit

A tube in which insulated wires and cables are passed.

Connector

A device used to physically and electrically join two or more conductors.

Contact

The conducting part of a connector that acts with another such part to complete or break a circuit.

Continuity

A continuous path for the flow of current in an electrical circuit.

Crimp

Final configuration of a terminal barrel formed by the compression of terminal barrel and wire.

Crimp Height

The measurement of the overall wire barrel height after crimping the terminal.

Current

Total current is the combination of resistive and capacitive currents. Resistive current is present in both AC and DC DWV tests. Additionally, the capacitive current is present only with fluctuations in applied voltage (Ex: AC testing).

Dielectric

Any insulating medium that intervenes between two conductors.

Double Crimp

The process of two or more mechanical crimping operations on the same location in a single terminal.

Ferrule

A short tube. Used to make solderless connections to shielded or coaxial cable. Also, a terminal crimped onto the stranded wire to allow insertion into terminal blocks.

Grommet

A rubber seal used on the cable side of multiple contact connector to seal the connector against moisture, dirt or air.

Harness

A group of wire and cables, usually made with breakouts. Furthermore, with a rubber or plastic sheath tie them together. A harness also provides interconnection of an electric circuit.

Insulation

A material that offers high electrical resistance making it suitable for covering components, terminals, and wires. This material also helps to prevent the possible future contact of adjacent conductors and a resulting short circuit.

Insulation Crimp

Area of a terminal, splice or contact formed around the insulation of the wire.

Jacket

An outer covering, usually nonmetallic, mainly used for protection against the environment.

Lanyard

A device attached to certain connectors that permit uncoupling and separation of connector halves by a pull on a wire or cable.

Multiple-Conductor Cable

A combination of two or more conductors cabled together and insulated from one another and from sheath or armor where used.

Polarization

A mechanical arrangement of inserts and/or shell configuration that prohibits the mating of mismatched plugs and receptacles.

RF Connector

Connector used for connecting or terminating coaxial cable.

Ribbon Cable

A flat cable of individually insulated conductors lying parallel and held together by means of adhesive film laminate.

Strain Relief 

A technique or item which reduces the transmission of mechanical stresses to the conductor termination.

Stress Relief

A predetermined amount of slack to relieve tension in component or lead wires.

Terminal 

A device designed to terminate a conductor that is to be affixed to a post, stud, chassis, another conductor, etc., to establish an electrical connection. Some types of terminals include ring, tongue, spade, flag, hook, blade, quick-connect, offset and flagged.

Tubing

A tube of extruded non-supported plastic or metallic material.

Wire

Slender rod or filament of drawn metal.

Wire Diameter

The overall conductor plus insulation thickness.

Types of Wire Terminals 

The definition of a terminal is:

A device designed to terminate a conductor that is to be affixed to a post, stud, chassis, another tongue, etc., to establish an electrical connection.

Wire Terminals come in many different shapes and sizes. This is due to the size of the wire and screw. Also, there are several types of terminals.

Wire Harness Manufacturing Terminals Include:

  • Ring
  • Spade
  • Hook
  • Quick-disconnect
  • Bullet
  • Butt terminals
  • Flagged

Wire terminals are available in insulated and non-insulated. The insulation provides a protective cover. Therefore, serving as a non-conductor. Furthermore, the type of project that is being done will determine if you need insulated or non-insulated terminals.

The insulation spares the wire from water and moisture as well. Also, it protects against extreme heat or cold. Wire insulation is typically available in vinyl, nylon and heat shrink.  Non-insulated terminals provide much more economic value with its low cost. Also, they are commonly used when extra protection is unnecessary.

When purchasing various Types of Wire Terminals, make sure that your purchase meets industry standards as well as project requirements.

Wire Terminals

Ring Terminals

Types of Wire Insulation

A ring terminal is a round-ended terminal that easily allows a screw or stud to be attached. Ring terminals also called ring connectors, come in various sizes. It is crucial that the ring terminal is compatible with the wire gauge and stud size. Ring Terminals are either crimped or soldered to the wire. Available in insulated or non-insulated.

 

Spade Terminals

Spade Terminals are also called spade connectors or fork terminals due to the shape of the terminal. A spade terminal is available in various sizes depending on the gauge of the wire and stud size. Additionally, the open-ended spade terminal is convenient to use allowing easy attachment or removal from the screw. Especially for wire harness projects that are tight on space for installation. They are also available in insulated or non-insulated.

 

Hook Terminals

Similar to the Spade Terminal, Hook Terminals are convenient to use with an open end (imagine a tiny version of Captain Hook). These terminals are produced as insulated or non-insulated. Hook Terminals offer a simplistic yet durable connection for a variety of projects.

 

 

Quick-Disconnect Terminals

A quick-disconnect terminal provides convenient and reliable usage while also offering an easy connect and disconnect between two wires. They are commonly found in auto, industrial and consumer products. Products can be insulated or non-insulated. Quick-Disconnect Terminals additionally deliver a stable and durable connection.

 

Bullet Terminals

Types of Wire Terminals

Bullet Terminals (also called bullet terminals) make an easy, reliable and secure connection. It is simple to disconnect as well. Bullet terminals also connect with the male and open-ended round female connectors creating a high-quality connection. Therefore, the connection with bullet terminals helps prevent corrosion and other potentially harmful materials from entering a wire harness.

 

Butt Terminals

A Butt Terminal connects or terminates single or multiple wires. Butt Terminals help prevent abrasion and cutting. Additionally, this extra protection helps keep out moisture, corrosion, and other negative elements. Butt Terminals serve as a simple solution to extend wires due to the ability to mate and connect wires. Simply install each wire on the open end of the connector, then crimp both ends of the terminal to secure the connection.

 

Flagged Terminals 

Flag Terminals also called flag connectors to offer a convenient and secure connection. Flag terminals work well in tight spaces as well as when a quick-disconnect is too large. Provides a quick and easy connection and disconnect. Also available in insulated and non-insulated.

 

Wire Insulation

Wires can be found… seems like… everywhere. Any electrical product that demands a current flowing will typically require a wire (or cable). Even when you hear something is “wireless”. In this instance wires power the device sending a signal. Electricity traveling through wires bring each of us tremendous joy and pleasure.

Examples of electronics containing wires:

  • Computers
  • Internet routers
  • Also, music players (MP3 and iPods)
  • Communication devices (Cell Phones)
  • Vehicles
  • Appliances

Actually, can you imagine surviving a single day without electricity? Well, in the early stages, electricity did not travel so safely through wires. Thankfully electricity travels safe and sound through wires protected with wire insulation.

Wire Harness Manufacturing

The explosive growth of electrical products well over a century ago drastically increased the use of wires carrying electricity. Unfortunately, uncovered or exposed wires were responsible for dangerous situations.

Furthermore, exposed wires led to electrical shocks or fire. However, the addition of a non-conductive cover was a brilliant move to protect and strengthen wires. The application of Wire Insulation protects wires greatly reducing potential hazards and threats.

You can take a look at wire insulation in the 19th century.

Check out this cool video on porcelain insulators. Thanks to Thomas Edison Tech Center.

 Wire Insulation Evolution

Due to increasing demand, electrical products require a solution to protect wires. The solution is affordable and efficient. Also, with the early growth in popularity, wire harness assembly has become necessary. It is much more efficient in harnessing loose wires. This is opposed to a “free for all”. Especially for electrical consumer goods and the auto industry. Both of which have exploded since the early 20th century.

Insulation serves as a non-conductor. The Insulation also separates and protects wires within a wire harness assembly. Especially since it is a nasty world out there with many detrimental elements that can cause harm to non-insulted wires.

To save the day, an insulated jacket protects each wire from the elements keeping the wire cozy and safe. Like insulated terminals, wire insulation also protects from moisture and extreme temperatures.

Thankfully wire insulation today is much more efficient. It is also, effective and affordable.  For example, thermoplastic high heat-resistant nylon coated wire (THHN wire) is low in cost. It is also lightweight. Due to these factors, it is an extremely popular wire insulation option.

Now that you know all about terminals and wires you need to know how they come together to create a wire harness.

Crimping Tools

We have over 30 years of wire harness manufacturing experience. Also, we here at Falconer Electronics have accumulated an impressive arsenal of crimping tools. When crimping wires and cables for our customers we have to utilize the proper tools. These allow our team to execute jobs with accuracy and efficiency. As well as, in a safe manner.

Many projects require crimping wires by hand. When producing wire assemblies for prototypes and small volume runs, handheld crimping tools sure come in…well… handy.

It is extremely important to look over the entire assembly when selecting the proper tool. For example, a basic pliers-style crimp tool can fit various wires, connectors, and terminals. Also, matching the right size tool is imperative when terminating wires.

A great brand is Molex. They are a global leader in the manufacturing of high-quality electrical tools. They are also a leader in components and other equipment. Falconer Electronics hax relied on Molex for many years. We trust their products.

The team at Molex declares they solve challenges “through our collaborative process, we take a multi-dimensional approach that brings together engineers, product designers, and manufacturers to ensure the design cycle is smooth and seamless.”

Below is one of the “Bad Boys” from Molex that our team loves to use when tackling tough projects:

Pneumatic Crimping Tool

Not interested in crimping wires by hand? Or do you have a large amount to crimp? No problem. Pneumatic crimping tools are extremely beneficial and efficient. Additionally, a pneumatic tool allows you to work hands-free due to air power. These tools are also fast and accurate. All qualities that will drastically increase your production.

We recently welcomed a new addition to our team. The Pneumatic Crimping Press pictured below. The “Plug’n Play” Pneumatic Press looks fierce, doesn’t it? It is ready and raring to CRIMP!! Especially ideal for wires requiring interchangeable crimping dies:

Tips for Successful Wire Harness Manufacturing 

  • The crimp does not break the insulation.
  • Also, the crimp fully wraps around and supports insulation (also cannot expose an opening greater than 45 degrees).
  • Insulation does not have puncturing to the point where tabs penetrate the wires.
  • Crimp tabs are in contact with the top of the insulation.
  • Insulation is flush with the crimped wire.
  • Additionally, identifying damaged insulation that reveals wires.
  • The wire, connector, assembly process, as well as insulation, are all compatible.

Wire Harness Manufacturing

Wire Harness Manufacturing: Crimping Wires Do’s & Don’ts

The IPC/WHMA-A-620  standard provides the necessary guidance on crimping wires. Consequently, this standard shows what is acceptable along with what is considered defective. Here are a few examples of Do’s and Don’ts:

Do’s

  • Insulation crimp tabs fully wrap and support insulation
  • Additionally, the insulation fully enters and extends past the insulation crimp tabs
  • Wires must be in solid working condition – also cannot have scrapes, nicks, severing or other damages
  • The connector retains the wires
  • Center the crimp indent
  • Insulation crimp must provide a minimum side report of 180 degrees

Don’ts

  • Wires should not have deformities- Flattening untwisting, buckling, or kinking
  • Insulation should not show any signs of pinching, pulling, fraying, discoloration, or charring
  • Also, the insulation crimp needs to fully support and wrap insulation without causing any damage or breaking the insulation
  • No broken insulation- This can expose wires causing safety issues and potential hazards
  • Wire not secured by crimp
  • Contact has visible cracks and fractures
  • Also, no Birdcaging – Wire Separation

These are just a handful of the requirements.

To learn more about the Wire Harness Manufacturer’s Association and A-620 Standards, please click here.

Wire Harness Manufacturing Quality Control  

Wire Harness Quality Control is paramount at Falconer Electronics. We perform testing on cables and wire harness assemblies for every order. Therefore, quality control strongly impacts the bottom line with the wire harness assembly process. Also, our well-guided wire harness quality control and a solid test system prevents unnecessary errors, stress and lost profits.

High accuracy during the assembly process is the key to maintaining competitive pricing and reliability. We take every step to ensure accuracy at the time of assembling and producing the wires. Instituting a strict wire harness quality control system during production brings significant benefits to our customers.

Wire Harness Manufacturing Testing Check List

Safety First! Wire Harness Testing requires extreme caution. This is due to it involving live wires. Unfortunately, electric shock and burns can turn a great day into a really bad day quickly. It is mandatory to use personal protective equipment on the job such as safety glasses when testing a wire assembly.

When performing Wire Harness Testing, our quality control department strictly follows the IPC/WHMA-A-620 Standard. Most importantly, this standard is a collection of visual Quality Acceptability Requirements for Cable as well as Wire and Harness Assemblies.

Wire Harness Manufacturing Checklist for Testing Wires:

  1. Accurate Labeling
  2. Check for Damaged Insulation or Defective Wires
  3. Continuity
  4. Correct Wire Gauge
  5. Also, Check for Proper Crimps
  6. Free of Moisture and Corrosion
  7. Optimum Wire Placement Within Connectors
  8. Pull Test
  9. Test for Broken Wires
  10. Finally, Test for Shorts

Deming Values for Continual Improvement

Going old school, we are also big fans of 20th-century management guru Dr. Deming. Dr. W. Edwards Deming created 14 points for management with a quest for continual improvement. Especially since Dr. Deming is credited with being the master of quality improvement. Particularly with his work in Japan during the 1950’s.

The Deming Institute continues the incredible legacy of Dr. Deming.

Furthermore, one of the core values at the Deming Institute states:

We are dedicated to the Deming philosophy and the belief that working together, with humility, we can make a difference in the quality of life for everyone.

This is a truly inspiring message!

According to Dr. Deming, implementing the 14 points is a philosophical way of conducting business with an unwavering quest for continual improvement. In addition, new tactics and behaviors become habits. Furthermore, those habits eventually form into the core beliefs and culture of a company.

In particular, two interesting points from Dr. Deming’s 14 points that help drive our wire harness quality control:

1. Create constancy of purpose toward improvement of product and service, with the aim to become competitive and to stay in business, and as a result to provide jobs.

5. Improve constantly and forever the system of production and service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus constantly decrease costs.

Consequences when continual improvement and quality are NOT the top priority:

  • High defect rates
  • Underutilized equipment
  • Poor productivity
  • Poor inventory management
  • Safety concerns
  • Finally, low morale with employees

Dr. W. Edwards Deming

Wrapping it Up 

In conclusion, at Falconer Electronics, Wire Harness Manufacturing runs through our veins. Consequently, having built literally millions of Wire Harnesses over the past 30+ years. Actually many of our employees say they could build a wire harness in their sleep. (Is that why they started bringing their pillows to work?)

However, on a serious note, Wire Harness Manufacturing drives our business. Furthermore, delivering consistent and high-quality Wire Harness Assemblies contributes greatly to our successful long-term customer relationships dating back to 1985.

Thank you for reading our post on Wire Harness Manufacturing Terms, Tools, and Tips of the Trade.

Also, for more information on Wire Harness Manufacturing, click here:

For additional information click on the links below:

Lastly, connect on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn for more electronic info.

 

 

Ribbon Cables

What are Ribbon Cables

Ribbon Cables

Ribbon Cables consist of multiple wires attached to each other in the form of a flexible ribbon. Due to their flexibility Ribbon Cables have many different functions. Also, they are a vital part of multiple electronics.  Another term for these cables is “flat cables”. This is a literal description of their appearance.

Structurally speaking the individual conductors form a ribbon by the addition of an insulating material. This material is usually PVC. However, Teflon is another material that can insulate the conductors.

Knowledge is Power

Have you ever gone to a mechanic with a vehicle issue? It is helpful to be able to describe your problem. Better yet if you know exactly the problem it will be quicker and easier for the mechanic to fix. People tend to want to laugh when they see a customer bring a car in for an issue and you hear them trying to make the grinding noise that their tire is making. However, if a mechanic can identify that sound they are more likely to go straight to the source of the noise.

How often does anyone think about the components of their everyday electronics? The same thing can happen with electronics. The more knowledge of components that a consumer has the better equipt they are to describe an issue. There are so many electronics that contain ribbon cables.  Electronics we use every day like computers, phones, and televisions contain Ribbon Cables. The more that is known about these cables the more likely it is that any issues that occur will be found.

Where You Can Find Ribbon Cables

Ribbon Cables are often chosen for projects due to their fixed-wire position and the ease of installation. Their fixed wire positions ensure that there will be no crossed wires or shortages. Also, there is the added perk of each individual wire having their own insulation.

Due to their flexible nature and their wire positions, Ribbon Cables are commonly known for their part in computers. Usually found in computer hard drives and CD drives. These cables are also parts of many consumer electronics products, test and measurement equipment, automated termination equipment, robotics, and even some medical equipment.

Connect with Us

To Get a Personalized Estimate for Ribbon Cables Visit Our Wire Harness Estimator.

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Also, for more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect with us on TwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

Custom Cable Harness Estimator Picture - Custom Wire Harness Estimator Ribbon

The History of Ribbon Cables

 

The Early Years

The Ribbon Cable was first discovered in 1956 by Cicoil Corporation. Its original design was to be flat to fit into computers. They were to replace the large and inflexible cables. Engineers were able to figure out a way to use liquid silicone rubber to mold a very thin flat cable. They also contain multiple conductors of the same size, controlling the spacing of each internal copper wire. The Flat Cable allowed companies like IBM, Sperry/Univac, Honeywell, GE and NCR to replace bulky, stiff round cables with sleek, flexible ribbon cables.

Custom Cable Harness Estimator Picture - Custom Wire Harness Estimator Ribbon

In addition, in the 1960’s NASA was in need of a mission-critical, lightweight cable. Cicoil’s Cables met all of the rigorous requirements for a Space Flight Cable. As a result, the cable harness helped America put a man on the Moon. As a result, the lightweight Ribbon cables were integral to the first American Orbit of the Earth, first Space Walk in 1965, and the Lunar Landing in 1969. In addition in 1998, a new extrusion process allowed manufacturers to continuously produce lengths of flat cable.

Today

Today, Ribbon Cable comes in all different shapes, sizes, and colors. They are also in a huge range of applications. From high-speed computer connections with coaxial cable to rainbow cable. Many different methods and materials go into simplifying and reduce the cost of these cables. The standardizing of the design and spacing of the wires and the thickness of the insulation. They could also be easily terminated through the use of insulation displacement connectors. Finally, the simplicity of the cables, their low profile, and low cost due to standardization allows ribbon cables to be in computers, printers, and many electronic devices.

For more information on where to find these colorful cables and their uses, Check out next weeks blog!

Connect with Us

To Get a Personalized Estimate for Ribbon Cables Visit Our Wire Harness Estimator

Follow us on our Facebook page!

Also, for more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect with us on TwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

 

Wire Harness Manufacturer

Welcome to today’s discussion on outsourcing your wire harness assembly to a Wire Harness Manufacturer. In particular, outsourcing your wire harness assemblies for a critical project. Finding yourself in the beginning stages of searching for a new Wire Harness Manufacturer to partner with presents several  challenges. Let’s go on a buyer’s journey to help assist you with the selection process. 

Why Outsource to a Wire Harness Manufacturer? 

First, outsourcing to a Wire Harness Manufacturer gets you in the game immediately without adding significant overhead and fixed costs.

Establishing the wire harness assembly process as a variable expense lends tremendous value and flexibility to your growth and profitability. This allows you to eliminate the financial risks of taking on the exorbitant investment required to build your own wire harness department.

In order to create your own wire harness assembly department, you would need a designated area in your facility. That is if you actually have the space to conduct these tasks.

Your next step requires purchasing all of the proper equipment, machinery, and crimping tools. However, this investment adds up quickly. Even into the tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Having a properly trained staff in place is another major investment of time and resources. For example, crimping wires safely and accurately requires extensive experience and a specialized skill.Wire Harness Manufacturer

Top 10 Tips for Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer

So if this sounds unrealistic and overwhelming, you need to consider what steps are necessary to find a Wire Harness Manufacturer that will serve as a trusted partner.

You now might be asking yourself:

  • Where do I begin my search?
  • What type of questions should I ask when interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer?
  • How can I determine that this Wire Harness Manufacturer is a solid fit with our company culture and goals?
  • Is this a trustworthy candidate?

Well, we have you covered. Below is a 10 step process to consider when outsourcing to a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

#1

Is it Time to Outsource to a Wire Harness Manufacturer? 

“Should we begin outsourcing our Wire Harness Assemblies to a Wire Harness Manufacturer?”

This is a common question our new customers typically ask themselves before reaching out to us.

Many times in life, if the question crosses your mind, then odds are it is time to act.

For example, is it time to discard those old ratty sneakers that offend everyone around you? Most likely, it is time to let go.

Do you eat the leftover seafood from Monday night…on Saturday? Probably not a good idea.

If you have been asking yourself if it is time to outsource to a Wire Harness Manufacturer, odds are the time has arrived. At the very least, it certainly doesn’t hurt to investigate further.

Start by identifying what event occurred or how this question arrived. Understanding when, how and why your internal Wire Harness Assembly Process became a burden is an important step.

What hold ups, hang ups, drag downs, hiccups, throw ups, headaches, heartaches, belly aches, or pain in the “you know what” occurred? Think about the moment where you said to yourself, “there must be a better way”.

#2

Reasons to Start Looking  

Serving as a Wire Harness Manufacturer for over 30 years, we have found several scenarios where a customer approaches us for the first time. Typically the customer contacts us with excitement (or out of frustration) when they are Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

Let’s role play. Below are a few scenarios where a new customer finds themselves seeking a new Wire Harness Manufacturer…….

Scenario #1) New Product Design and Prototypes

Congratulations! You have just completed a brand new electrical product design. You and your team (or maybe you are a team of one) just exhausted weeks and even months designing your new product that is going to be a home run! Now what? You need a completed prototype. Also, an estimate to see if your new design can be produced at a competitive price.

For example (and a shameless plug), you can go to the Falconer Electronics Wire Harness Estimator for an estimate on your prototype. You will find the Wire Harness Estimator easy to use and works extremely fast. A quick estimate allows you to determine the potential cost and competitiveness of your new product. New customers love it.

Another concern with creating a prototype on your own includes the prohibitive costs. Purchasing the necessary quantities to begin the process can be cumbersome and not cost effective. A Wire Harness Manufacturer has the tools, equipment, staff, and infrastructure in place to create a prototype quickly and affordable.

Scenario #2) Jumping Into Electronics 

You are in the purchasing department of a company expanding into electrical products for the first time. Management has challenged you to seek out and find a Wire Harness Manufacturer that best demonstrates the ability to tackle this project.

Let’s say a mid-sized manufacturer is expanding into electrical wiring.  Two examples that fit this example. We recently began working with two separate companies:

1) One that specializes in handicap accessible transportation

2) An ATM manufacturer

They each produced a new proprietary product line requiring wire harnesses and printed circuit boards. It was a significant savings for each company to outsource the wire harness assembly process and printed circuit boards rather than to attempt to conquer the project themselves.

Scenario #3) Vendor Divorce 

Unfortunately, you and your current Wire Harness Manufacturer are no longer compatible. Who changed? It is like a marriage deteriorating quickly where “living like this” is no longer an option. Either quality has deteriorated, deadlines are no longer met, or prices continue to increase.

Whatever the case may be, it is time for a change.  Losing a customer is deeply disappointing and discouraging. Our team works relentlessly to maintain long-lasting and monogamous marriages with our customers. We also enjoy catching new customers on the rebound.

Scenario #4) In-House No Longer Working Out 

Your company no longer finds it efficient or profitable to produce wire harness assemblies in-house. The task falls into your lap to find a highly qualified Wire Harness Manufacturer. Selecting a company that you trust is essential!

This recently happened to a large customer. They found it much more cost-effective and profitable to outsource their entire line of wire harness assemblies by partnering with our staff. Our team went on full throttle to make this a smooth transition.

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#3

Perform an Internal SWOT 

The next step, start with a SWOT on your internal Wire Harness Assembly process. What are the company strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats? Especially if you are just starting up.  This step is critical to help determine financial risks.

Do the same procedure and create a SWOT if you were to outsource to a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

The next question becomes, “Who can solve this problem so we can focus on our core business”?

A key to building a successful business is partnering with experts in a given field. Successful companies exist by solving a problem. Solving a problem requires developing an area of expertise. A proficiency that stands above the competition.

Partnering with Seasoned Professionals 

You need to partner with a Wire Harness Manufacturer that thrives and works relentlessly to gain a competitive advantage. Also, one that creates economies of scale for you. Most importantly, a solution so valuable that it just doesn’t make sense to perform these tasks on your own anymore.

As a business owner or manager, you hire professionals to strengthen your business and protect your assets. This list includes hiring an accountant, attorney, or insurance broker who have invested the time and energy to educate themselves respectively on business law, tax codes or proper insurance policies. Especially since you rely heavily on these individuals to help you make critical business decisions. Surrounding yourself with highly trained and qualified professionals has the potential to pay huge dividends.

Outsourcing certain tasks within the manufacturing process offer similar benefits. Partnering up with a Wire Harness Manufacturer that maintains an all-star team creates a winning formula. This allows you to maximize profits while minimizing risks.

#4

Where to Search for a New Wire Harness Manufacturer?

Once you determine that partnering with a New Wire Harness Manufacturer would be extremely beneficial for your company, now the fun begins.

Unless you already have a candidate in mind, most likely you will kick-start the search process by relying on connections within your network. A great place to start includes the list below:

  1. Vendors
  2. Suppliers
  3. Customers
  4. Chamber of Commerce
  5. Trade Associations
  6. Other local connections and business organizations

If you lack successful connections going this route, no fear. Call on your dear friend Google. Conducting a few Google searches will provide an array of companies that serve as a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

Is geography a critical factor? Not necessarily. Let’s say you were looking for a supplier of wooden pallets. You definitely need somebody extremely close. Otherwise, shipping costs would be brutal and cost prohibitive.

With a Wire Harness Assembly, shipping costs are typically not prohibitive and detrimental. Partnering with the right company in another part of the country can still be an effective and profitable relationship.

For example, we have customers throughout the entire U.S. We consistently ship to the west coast and Mexico as well. Shipping costs are particularly a non-factor compared to the quality of workmanship and consistently hitting tight deadlines.

Once you have discovered a worthy prospect, begin conducting company research and due diligence to see if this Wire Harness Manufacturer is a good fit for you.

Wire Harness Manufacturer

#5 

Due Diligence When Searching for a New Wire Harness Manufacturer

What can you determine from their online presence? 

Check Out the Company Website:

  1. First, explore the company website. Does the website represent the company as a partner that you can trust?
  2. Does the company reveal itself having the staff, tools, resources, and ability to tackle your project?
  3. Do they serve your industry?
  4. Do they have the experience and expertise to take on your project?
  5. Are company capabilities listed?

Check out their Social Media:

  1. Is the company active on social media with communicating their culture?
  2. Does it fit with yours?
  3. Does the company provide helpful tips?
  4. Communicate the company mission? Does the mission fit with yours?
  5. Can you easily submit a drawing of your wire harness assembly?
  6. When you contact them, do you receive a quick response?

Below includes a few additional questions to consider asking the Wire Harness Manufacturer:

  1. Types of customers they serve?
  2. What industry does the company target?
  3. Do they understand your needs?
  4. Do they have the flexibility to speed up during your busier times?
  5. Can they adjust to varying seasonal demands?
  6. Do you feel a chemistry and kindred spirit with this company?

Questions Regarding Vendor Relationships:

  1. Do they have outstanding vendor relationships?
  2. Do they have purchasing power?
  3. Are they willing to negotiate and fight for the lowest cost on products for you?
  4. Do they have strong cash flow and pay their bills on time so there are no delays in purchasing your product?

We will dig much deeper into questions to consider for your Wire Harness Manufacturer search, with #6 and & #7.

#6

Asking Challenging Questions Captures Valuable and Critical Information 

At this stage, you have narrowed the field down. To either a single or hopefully only a few Wire Harness Manufacturer candidates. Now is the time to begin the interview process. Asking tough interview questions will help lead you to the valued partner that you desire.

This partnership will take your business to the next level. At least, that is the goal.

 

Being overly prepared and asking the right questions can save you a great deal of grief down the road. Hastily jumping into a new relationship with a custom manufacturer that turns sour can be devastating and difficult to recover. Depending on the severity. The divorce can get nasty and costly.

Having a list of tough questions prepared brings tremendous value to the process.

50 Questions When Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer

To help discover if you are compatible with a Wire Harness Manufacturer that you are interviewing, below are a list of helpful questions to consider:

Round I: 

  1. What industries do you serve?
  2. Please describe your ideal customer?
  3. What has been your greatest victory in your business career or at your company?
  4. Biggest letdown or setback and how did you resolve?
  5. Could you share exciting changes taking place in your business?
  6. What are you absolutely best at?
  7. What are your weaknesses?
  8. How long have you been in business?
  9. Who are your key employees?
  10. Also, can you describe the experience of staff?
  11. Do I have access to the floor supervisor?
  12. Who is my main point of contact?
  13. Do I have a contact on weekends?
  14. Who do I contact for an emergency?
  15. Are you properly insured? (Check with your insurance company to confirm requirements)
  16. Can you supply 3 customer references?
  17. Are you willing to sign a non-disclosure form?
  18. What is your lead time for orders?
  19. Therefore, are you able to tackle rush orders?
  20. Should the customer supply parts or do you prefer to supply parts?
  21. Do you have aggressive discount programs with vendors?
  22. Furthermore, do you take advantage of early payment discounts with your vendors?
  23. Also, what are your payment terms?
  24. Do you accept credit card for payment?
  25. Are discounts available for early payment?
Round II:
  1. What type of equipment and tools do you use?
  2. What is your shipping policy?
  3. Could we compare discounts with UPS/FedEx to see who has the best rates?
  4. Who is responsible for damaged goods during shipping?
  5. Do you accept blanket orders?
  6. Will you inventory our raw parts or finished goods when necessary?
  7. Are you willing to purchase new tools or equipment to complete projects?
  8. Can we work with you on projections?
  9. What software do you use for inventory management and scheduling?
  10. Furthermore, is your company tech savvy?
  11. Do one or two customers represent more than 50% of your annual sales?
  12. Have you ever been sued or in a lawsuit?
  13. In addition, have you ever gone bankrupt?
  14. How do we handle damaged goods or parts not working?
  15. Can you describe your testing process and quality control?
  16. What is the company mission or vision statement?
  17. Do you have a succession plan or exit strategy in place?
  18. What makes your company stand above the competition?
  19. Also, are there facets of your business that demonstrate your commitment to your customer’s profitability?
  20. Any industry standards or certificates achieved?
  21. Do you also have a safety protocol in place?
  22. What is your capacity level?
  23. Have you experienced layoffs recently?
  24. Furthermore, are you profitable?
  25. Please explain the reason a recent customer stopped buying from you?

Asking thorough questions goes a long way with any relationship. This list is just a suggestive list of helpful questions to consider when Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

#7

Discreet Questions Can Save You Down the Road 

Outsourcing manufacturing operations can deliver tremendous benefits to your business. Unfortunately, there are many risks attached as well. Furthermore, let’s continue our discussion by addressing Discreet Questions to Determine Character Compatibility and Financial Viability. Asking tough questions will help narrow down your selection process.

So you have entered the interview process to select a new custom manufacturer to partner with. Therefore, now you are digging deeper into the due diligence process to see who is exactly the best fit.

Financial stability is certainly one of your absolute top concerns. If you are both small businesses, discovering actual financial figures or intimate information may be difficult to obtain. Even though this is information is critical. Especially if the project or product represents a significant portion of your sales.

So what steps or strategies can you take to discover the financial viability of this new prospect?

Important Questions to Ask Yourself 

Here are a few questions to ask yourself through this process:

  • Does the company represent itself well?
  • Do you have similar goals and a common business philosophy?
  • Also, is this a team of people with integrity that you can trust impeccably?
  • Is this a partner that is committed to your profitability and success?
  • Or are you another opportunity for the owner to support a lavish lifestyle?

Determine Character Compatibility and Financial Viability 

Here are a number of discreet questions to consider to help determine the financial viability of the company as well as the character level of ownership:

Check Spending Habits:
  1. Strike up a conversation on hobbies. Do they have expensive hobbies? Golf at Pebble Beach, mountain climbing the Himalayas, scuba diving in Thailand, flying a helicopter, bragging about their yacht… you get the point.
  2. Find out the type of car they drive. “My spouse is looking for a new car. What type of car do you drive or recommend?”
  3. If you live near the prospect, casually ask what neighborhood they live in. Sorry to get overly “stalkerish”, but finding out their neighborhood will let you know their lifestyle. Also, Google Earth may assist.
Ask for References: 
  1. Ask for bank reference
  2. ……business references
  3. ……also, character references
  4. …… as well as customer references

Do Some Research on Google and Social Media: 

  1. Google the owner to discover any past felonies, convictions or other bad news.
  2. Additionally, you may want to check their Facebook page & see what they do in their personal time.
  3. Also, check any other social media – Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and Pinterest.
  4. Look for Videos on YouTube.
  5. Furthermore, check mutual connections on LinkedIn.

Going the extra mile with your due diligence process will save you a tremendous amount of grief and frustration down the road.

#8

It is Now Time to Plan a Visit and Take a Tour

So you continue plunging through the due diligence process to select a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

You have performed dozens of Google searches of “Wire Harness Manufacturer” to narrow down the field.

You have evaluated plenty of websites and social media pages until they all start to blend together.

Hopefully, several companies are standing out from the crowd.

Emails have been exchanged and phone calls have been made to break the ice.

You have also been asking plenty of tough questions and pleased with a majority of responses.

Also, there may be one or two candidates that really seem like they are head and shoulders above the rest.

You are feeling good.

Finally, it is time to plan a visit and tour each facility.

A physical visit to top candidates in person is vital to your decision. You might even want to consider a surprise visit (“Hey, I was in the neighborhood” – even if 500 miles away).

Here is an excellent article from the Harvard Business Review regarding plant tours (Even though this was written 20 years ago).

Eyes Wide Open and the Attitude of a Harsh Critic

It is extremely important to go on the tour with eyes wide open and the attitude of a harsh critic.

(Actually, this was just a great excuse to get Judge Judy into one of our blogs).

What to Look for When Touring a Wire Harness Manufacturer

Below is a list to consider when Touring a Wire Harness Manufacturer:

  1. Do you find the building and property presentable or unkempt? (Unmowed grass, disheveled parking lot, garbage, broken windows, etc…)
  2. Additionally, is the office presentable or unkempt? (Top of the line everything or dated to the 1960’s)
  3. Are you warmly greeted?
  4. Additionally, are the management, staff, and employees pleasant and welcoming?
  5. Also, do employees look happy and hustling?
  6. Are tools and equipment organized and well maintained?
  7. Furthermore, are the warehouse and inventory efficiently organized?
  8. Is the shipping dock clear of clutter?
  9. Also, are you impressed or underwhelmed with the team and operation?
  10. Are there any red flags that make you uneasy?
  11. Additionally, do employees have cell phones out?
  12. Check the kitchen area – is it clean and organized or dirty?
  13. In addition to the kitchen area, are the restrooms clean?
  14. Are there any key employees that do not come out to meet you?
  15. When evaluating the quantity and quality of staff, does the company seem to be top heavy?
  16. What are the years of service of the management team?
  17. Be prepared with tough questions regarding your product and process to determine if they are indeed experts in their field (see #6).
  18. Is the Wire Harness Manufacturer management team short and brief with you? Is this a good sign that they are focused and busy or are they rude and distracted?
  19. On the other hand, if they meet with you for a long period are they too lackadaisical or not busy?
  20. Furthermore, do they seem eager to earn your business or desperate?
Bonus Round 
  1. Look for matching or mismatched priorities: expensive office furniture, overstaffed, excessive non-business essentials (foosball table, video games, keg parties, etc).
  2. Get a gauge on morale at the company.
  3. Does the owner wear an expensive wardrobe or jewelry?
  4. Finally, ask the owner for an opportunity to have a mutual meeting with their accountant to view audited financials. In addition, if necessary, offer to have the meeting at your expense. Could offer great ROI.

Outsourcing your production to a custom manufacturer is similar to finding quality daycare for your child. Therefore, you need to find a company that you Trust, Trust, Trust!

As the saying goes, if something is not a “HELL YEAH” then it is simply a “No”.

#9

Supply Parts or Not to Supply Parts?

That is the Question 

(OK, that was our pathetic attempt to sound like Shakespeare).

Anyway, a common question with new customers: “What if we would like to supply our own parts?” With many custom manufacturers, this is the equivalent of bringing your own food to a restaurant and asking them to prepare you a meal.

Supplying your own products to a custom manufacturer offers several positives and negatives. Consequently, it works best to communicate clearly with the manufacturer on the pros and cons of either option.

The question is do you really save money?  Also, one-size fits all does not apply here. Furthermore, there are many variables to consider which option makes the most sense (or more importantly, makes the most CENTS).

Pros and Cons 

Let’s take a look at the Pros and Cons of supplying your own parts and components: 

Positives 

Several benefits fall in your favor by taking the initiative to order and supply your own parts when outsourcing:

  1. You control the ordering process and supply chain. 
  2. Ordering your own parts allows you to also have full disclosure of pricing on the cost of goods.
  3. First-hand knowledge of availability or stock-outs of your product.
  4. Furthermore, you have better control over delivery times. 
  5. Negotiating your own discounts with the vendor. 
Negatives 

However, ordering or supplying your own parts may be welcomed by the Wire Harness Manufacturer. On the other hand, this approach could be disruptive to the manufacturer. Furthermore, there are a few negatives to consider:

  1. The time you spend ordering parts.
  2. As well as the time you spend coordinating deliveries.
  3. Lost opportunity of volume discounts available to the manufacturer due to their purchasing power.
  4. Product knowledge and expertise that the manufacturer possesses.
  5. Also, the variety of shipments arriving at the manufacturer on different days throws off their production schedule for your product.
  6. The receiving department at the manufacturer must be informed of delivery. This communication is crucial for the manufacturer in order to properly schedule the production of your products.
  7. The manufacturer must implement a means to monetize the receipt of your goods that you have delivered. It is in neither parties interest to not account for labor, handling, and the overhead expense of receiving and storing goods. So, are you really saving money?
Where is Your Time Best Spent? 

Wire Harness Manufacturer

An important question to ask yourself: Is your time better spent focusing on other areas of the business? Furthermore, did you partner with a company that you trust enough to delegate the purchases?

In addition, you partnered or hired the custom manufacturer due to their proficiency, expertise, and ability to deliver a quality product on time. Is it worth your time, hassle and energy to locate new vendors and product? Especially in areas that are either new to you or where you are lacking purchasing power and strong vendor relationships.

#10

Conclusion

 New Wire Harness Manufacturer  

Finally, selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer does not need to be a stressful process. Outsourcing Your Wire Harness Assembly can generate significant profits for your business.

Especially partnering with an experienced company with a seasoned staff. This decision lends a tremendous competitive advantage for your company. Also, selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer that completes projects with the highest quality, effective pricing, and on-time delivery dramatically boosts to your bottom line. Therefore, teaming up with a company dedicated to your success is critical.

Wire Harness Manufacturer Checklist 

To recap, here is a checklist of company traits to pursue when finalizing your search for a new Wire Harness Manufacturer:

  1. Superior Quality
  2. Maintaining an Impeccable Customer Scorecard
  3. Also, fast Turnaround Times
  4. Competitive Prices
  5. Seasoned Staff
  6. Company Experience
  7. Short Lead Times
  8. Agile and Flexible
  9. Company Culture Dedicated to Customer Satisfaction
  10. Lastly, a Deep Commitment to Safety

Wrapping It Up 

Wire Harness Manufacturer

Ok. Hopefully, you are now happy as can be with your new Wire Harness Manufacturer.

Furthermore, as with any outsourcing partner, work diligently to maintain healthy and constant communication. Also, be clear about goals and expectations. This will also help guarantee a long, happy and prosperous marriage.

Thank you for taking the time to read our Tips for Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

Additionally, click on these links for more info on electronics manufacturing and ground straps.

 

 

 

Also, check out these helpful links:

Lastly, please connect with us on FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.

Wishing you a HUGELY SUCCESSFUL and an ELECTRIFYING DAY!

Do you know the similarities between cables and wires? Wires and cables are very similar in nature and they can have similar purposes.

The Main Similarities

The main similarities between cables and wires are that they both conduct electrical currents. Wires are the components of a cable. Multiple wires make up a single cable. Also, a single wire and a single cable both can have insulation or insulative jackets. However, a cable has an outer jacket while the single wires inside have their jackets as well. The differences in insulation can determine the different uses of a wire and cable.

Cables Cables

As stated previously, cables consist of multiple wires. There are cables that have the wires twisted to hold them together. There are also some that have the separate wires encased in an insulated jacket. This jacket doesn’t just hold the internal wires together but it also protects the internal wires from the elements. Cables can also contain numerous insulated wires. There is an extra level of protection when individual wires within a cable have their own insulation.  There is protection from corrosion and friction amongst individual wires due to the extra insulation.

Wires 

Solid and stranded are the two types of wires. Many individual strands of wire twisted together make up stranded wires. These strands can be very fine or larger depending on the application. Generally, the more strands and the smaller the strands the more flexible the wire is. Solid wire is just that, one strand of copper drawn to the appropriate gauge size. Also, wires can either be insulated or non-insulated. Insulted wires are less likely to have corrosion or the added issue of contact between non-insulated wires. A number of different applications use non-insulated wires. These applications include places where electrical wiring, armature wire, and magnet wire are needed. Non-insulated wiring is different from the insulated wire. This is due to it not being plated or coated with anything.

To learn more about Wire Harnesses Assembly click here! Free wire harness estimates are also available.

For more information on wires go to our blog!

You can also get great DIY ideas on our Facebook page! For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect with us on TwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

Wire Harness

A wire harness can be a very useful part of many different projects. You want to make sure that you can properly use the materials that you have. You also want to make sure that you have the correct materials for the project at hand. This list of top five mistakes can help you with the basics of working with wire harnesses.

Awareness of Wire Harness Uses

One of the most common mistakes is not being aware of a project that can use a wire harness. At times a project can be assembled easier using a wire harness over other wiring options. Due to being unaware of the possibilities you won’t be able to use a more convenient and possibly better functioning product for your project. Therefore, your project may suffer in functionality.

Improper Length Needed

The old saying about measuring twice while working on construction projects can apply just as well to wire harness usage. It is always better to measure the length you need of wire more than once. Consequently, if your measurements are not correct you may end up with a wire harness that is much too short for what you need. If your connections cannot reach their destination that wire harness will become useless to your project.

Incorrect Type of Connector on Wire Harness

You want to be sure of the connectors that you need for your project. If your project requires a female connector and the wire harness that you have has a male connector it will not do you any good. Knowing the different types of connections when working a project is very important. It is important to know what products you are working with, due to the many different types of connectors and wires that can be used in projects.

Incorrect Wire Harness

Along with using incorrect connectors a major mistake when working with wire harnesses is using the wrong harness all together. You need to be aware of what type of harness you need for your project. While some projects require larger gauged wires, others will require smaller gauged wires. You want to be sure of what types of wire harness that your project needs in order to function properly.

Using a Cracked or Cut wire

A lot of people think that if you cover a gash in a wire with electrical tape that wire is good to go forever. While electrical tape is a great thing to have in a pinch, it is not a permanent solution. Broken, cut, or cracked wires within harnesses should be replaced or not used. Unfortunately, replacement is the only surefire way to ensure that a wire’s integrity is intact and that it will hold up to its tasks.

To learn more about wire harnesses you can look at our Wire Assembly page.

You can also check out our Wire Harness Custom Estimator. In addition, click here for an Instant Quote on Braided Ground Straps.

Finally, let’s get social. Please connect with us on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

 

AWG

American Wire Gauge or AWG is the standard way of measuring wire gauges in the United States. However, in other countries, they use a different standard of measuring, SWG or British Imperial Standard Wire Gauge, for example. The availability of two different standards has led to a difference in how wire gauges are measured and what standard sizes of wire are used.

AWG

AWG is the standard for measuring wire in the United States. This standard is defined by the diameter of the electrical wire that is being measured. Therefore, it is the physical size is what matters most. Also, the larger the physical size of the wire the smaller the wire gauge according to the AWG measurements.

SWG

SWG was the legal standard for measuring wire in the United Kingdom as of 1884. All of the SWG measurements are in metric sizes. In most cases of use of the SWG measuring standard the sizes will be rounded up which does affect the accuracy.

Similarities

In a lot of ways, AWG and SWG standards are similar. Most noteworthy, both standards are based on the physical size of the wire being measured. Also, both share common wire numbers that express those physical sizes. Finally, metal measuring plates are used to determine the size of the wire.

Differences

The most obvious difference is the standard of measurements. AWG is recorded in what is referred to as the imperial system of measurement. This system of measurements is in inches. Therefore, the American standard is different from the SWG system which uses the metric system of measuring. When looking at the charts below there are slight differences in the calculations between the two systems. Especially relevant is the difference that can be seen between the 12 and 24 gauges. These are very common sizes of wire and the chart shows a very drastic difference amongst the size measurements.

 

Reference charts:

AWG

 

 

Wire Number
Imperial Standard
Wire Gauge
American
Wire Gauge
gauge ins. dia. ins. dia.
0000000 (7/0) 0.5000
000000 (6/0) 0.4640 0.580000
00000 (5/0) 0.4320 0.516500
0000 (4/0) 0.4000 0.460000
000 (3/0) 0.3720 0.409642
00 (2/0) 0.3480 0.364796
0 (1/0) 0.3240 0.324861
1 0.3000 0.289297
2 0.2760 0.257627
3 0.2520 0.229423
4 0.2320 0.2043
5 0.2120 0.1819
6 0.1920 0.1620
7 0.1760 0.1443
8 0.1600 0.1285
9 0.1440 0.1144
10 0.1280 0.1019
11 0.1160 0.0907
12 0.1040 0.0808
13 0.0920 0.0720
14 0.0800 0.0641
15 0.0720 0.0571
16 0.0640 0.0508
17 0.0560 0.0453
18 0.0480 0.0403
19 0.0400 0.0359
20 0.0360 0.0320
21 0.0320 0.0285
22 0.0280 0.0253
23 0.0240 0.0226
24 0.0220 0.0201
25 0.0200 0.0179
26 0.0180 0.0159
27 0.0164 0.0142
28 0.0148 0.0126
29 0.0136 0.0113
30 0.0124 0.0100
31 0.0116 0.0089
32 0.0108 0.0080
33 0.0100 0.0071
34 0.0092 0.0063
35 0.0084 0.0056
36 0.0076 0.0050
37 0.0068 0.0045
38 0.0060 0.0040
39 0.0052 0.0035
40 0.0048 0.0031
41 0.0044 0.0028
42 0.0040 0.0025
43 0.0036 0.0022
44 0.0032 0.0020
45 0.0028 0.0018
46 0.0024 0.0016
47 0.0020 0.0014
48 0.0016 0.0012
49 0.0012 0.0011
50 0.0010 0.0010
51 0.00088
52 0.00078
53 0.00070
54 0.00062
55 0.00055
56 0.00049

simetric.co

 

To learn more about American Wire Gauge measurements check out our blog WHY DO WIRE GAUGE SIZES SEEM TO WORK BACKWARDS?

For additional information on the Wire Harness Assembly Process, please click the links below:

You can also get your own custom wire harness estimate with our Wire Harness Estimator

In addition, click here for an Instant Quote on Braided Ground Straps.

Finally, let’s get social. Please connect with us on FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.

Wire Gauge

How to Choose the Best Wire Gauge for Your Project

Have you been looking into a wiring project? Do you know what gauge of wire is best suited for your needs? Our tips can help you in the choosing process of wires!

**Always have electrical projects looked over by professionals before any installation or use to prevent injury or fire**

How to Choose the Best Wire Gauge for Your Project

1: What type of project are you doing?

There are many different types of wiring projects. Depending on whether you are working on home wiring or building your own robot, there is a difference between what type of wire is required. For example, some projects include:

  • Home wiring
  • Robotics
  • Computers
  • Vehicles

2: How much space do you need for wiring?

To begin with different housings for different projects will vary in size. Due to the wire size, the space needed to house them will vary. If you think about a light switch, some have a single switch and therefore only need enough room for the wires of that one switch. However, there are light switches that have multiple switches. Therefore, the space required for the wiring of a multi-switch receptacle is larger than that of a single switch receptacle. In order to do a job properly, you need to be aware of how much space you have to work with and really need. If you are working on home wiring that requires a larger current as opposed to a robot that requires less current the space needed is different because the wire size will be different.

3: How are wire gauges calculated?

Especially relevant is the fact that as wire increases in physical width, the gauge of that wire will decrease in numerical value. While this does seem backward it’s really not. Due to the wire drawing process, the number of operations that it takes to get it to that physical size is the numerical gauge of a wire. As a result, gauges are larger or smaller than the physical size.

Wire Gauge

4: What are large and small gauged wires used for?

There are also many different gauges of wire. Consequently, they have many different uses.

Uses for some smaller gauges (larger physical sizes) of wire:

  • Electrical lines (like those you see outside attached to power lines)
  • Heavy duty automobiles like trains, larger armored trucks
  • Home wiring

Uses for some larger gauges (smaller physical sizes of wire):

  • Computers
  • Radios
  • Phones
  • GPS
  • Mp3 player

5: How much amperage do you require?

There are different factors that determine the required amount of amperage:

  • Amperage= Wattage/Volts
  • What current do you need for your project
  • Where the wire is going
  • Where the wire is coming from

In addition to these tips you can learn more about wire gauges by looking back to our previous blog Why Do Wire Gauge Sizes Seem To Work Backwards?

In conclusion, the chart below will be helpful in deciding which wire is appropriate for your specific job.

AWG Cable/ Conductor Size Chart

AWG  Diameter 
[inches]
 Diameter 
[mm]
Area
[mm2]
Resistance
[Ohms / 1000 ft]
Resistance
[Ohms / km]
 Max Current 
[Amperes]
Max Frequency
for 100% skin depth
 0000 (4/0) 0.46 11.684 107 0.049 0.16072 302 125 Hz
000 (3/0) 0.4096 10.40384 85 0.0618 0.202704 239 160 Hz
00 (2/0) 0.3648 9.26592 67.4 0.0779 0.255512 190 200 Hz
0 (1/0) 0.3249 8.25246 53.5 0.0983 0.322424 150 250 Hz
1 0.2893 7.34822 42.4 0.1239 0.406392 119 325 Hz
2 0.2576 6.54304 33.6 0.1563 0.512664 94 410 Hz
3 0.2294 5.82676 26.7 0.197 0.64616 75 500 Hz
4 0.2043 5.18922 21.2 0.2485 0.81508 60 650 Hz
5 0.1819 4.62026 16.8 0.3133 1.027624 47 810 Hz
6 0.162 4.1148 13.3 0.3951 1.295928 37 1100 Hz
7 0.1443 3.66522 10.5 0.4982 1.634096 30 1300 Hz
8 0.1285 3.2639 8.37 0.6282 2.060496 24 1650 Hz
9 0.1144 2.90576 6.63 0.7921 2.598088 19 2050 Hz
10 0.1019 2.58826 5.26 0.9989 3.276392 15 2600 Hz
11 0.0907 2.30378 4.17 1.26 4.1328 12 3200 Hz
12 0.0808 2.05232 3.31 1.588 5.20864 9.3 4150 Hz
13 0.072 1.8288 2.62 2.003 6.56984 7.4 5300 Hz
14 0.0641 1.62814 2.08 2.525 8.282 5.9 6700 Hz
15 0.0571 1.45034 1.65 3.184 10.44352 4.7 8250 Hz
16 0.0508 1.29032 1.31 4.016 13.17248 3.7 11 k Hz
17 0.0453 1.15062 1.04 5.064 16.60992 2.9 13 k Hz
18 0.0403 1.02362 0.823 6.385 20.9428 2.3 17 kHz
19 0.0359 0.91186 0.653 8.051 26.40728 1.8 21 kHz
20 0.032 0.8128 0.518 10.15 33.292 1.5 27 kHz
21 0.0285 0.7239 0.41 12.8 41.984 1.2 33 kHz
22 0.0254 0.64516 0.326 16.14 52.9392 0.92 42 kHz
23 0.0226 0.57404 0.258 20.36 66.7808 0.729 53 kHz
24 0.0201 0.51054 0.205 25.67 84.1976 0.577 68 kHz
25 0.0179 0.45466 0.162 32.37 106.1736 0.457 85 kHz
26 0.0159 0.40386 0.129 40.81 133.8568 0.361 107 kHz
27 0.0142 0.36068 0.102 51.47 168.8216 0.288 130 kHz
28 0.0126 0.32004 0.081 64.9 212.872 0.226 170 kHz
29 0.0113 0.28702 0.0642 81.83 268.4024 0.182 210 kHz
30 0.01 0.254 0.0509 103.2 338.496 0.142 270 kHz
31 0.0089 0.22606 0.0404 130.1 426.728 0.113 340 kHz
32 0.008 0.2032 0.032 164.1 538.248 0.091 430 kHz
33 0.0071 0.18034 0.0254 206.9 678.632 0.072 540 kHz
34 0.0063 0.16002 0.0201 260.9 855.752 0.056 690 kHz
35 0.0056 0.14224 0.016 329 1079.12 0.044 870 kHz
36 0.005 0.127 0.0127 414.8 1360 0.035 1100 kHz
37 0.0045 0.1143 0.01 523.1 1715 0.0289 1350 kHz
38 0.004 0.1016 0.00797 659.6 2163 0.0228 1750 kHz
39 0.0035 0.0889 0.00632 831.8 2728 0.0175 2250 kHz
40 0.0031 0.07874  0.00501 1049 3440 0.0137 2900 kHz
Helpful Connections

If you are interested in designing your own wire harnesses check out our new Wire Harness Estimator to get a quote!

For additional information before you get started check out our blog on The Wire Harness Estimator Components Defined.

You can also learn more about our pre-designed wire harnesses by checking out our Wire Harness Page!

Also, check out ElectricalSchool.org for a glossary of electrical terms.

Lastly, let’s get social. Please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

**Always have electrical projects looked over by professionals before any installation or use to prevent injury or fire**   

Something that has been a constant source of confusion within many circles, is the question of why do wire gauge sizes seem to be the opposite of what we think they should be? As a wire increases in physical width the gauge of that wire will decrease in numerical value. This seems backwards but, there must be an explanation to this that makes some form of sense.

Determining Wire Gauge Sizes 

Given an example of the wire gauge chart in Figure 1.1 we can see there is an extreme difference in physical size between a 0 gauge wire and that of a 30 gauge wire. The physical size of the 30 gauge is substantially smaller than that of the 0 gauge wire. Why is this?

The physical size of a wire is defined by the number of operations that it takes to get it to that physical size. This process means that a 30 gauge wire is much smaller in size than a 0 gauge wire. This process is called “Wire Drawing” and it looks like Figure 1.2. “Wire Drawing” is what gives us all of the different gauges that are seen in Figure 1.1.

A way to think about the wire drawing process is to think of the process of taffy pulling. Just like that sugary deliciousness, the wire starts off as one larger wire mass. Also, like taffy pulling wire drawing stretches and decreases the physical size of the wire making it longer and thinner. The process of wire drawing and decreasing the gauge of a wire also reduces the current that is traveling through the wire. By reducing the current in smaller gauged wires there is a decrease in the amperage that can be handled.

 

wire gauge

Figure 1.1 (Standard Wire Gauge Chart)

 

Figure 1.2 (Wire Drawing to Decrease Wire Gauge) (Kingway)

 

Now that you know how wire gauges are measured you are ready to start your own wire harness journey!

If you are interested in designing your own wire harnesses check out our new Wire Harness Estimator to get a quote!

If you need more information before you get started check out our blog on The Wire Harness Estimator Components Defined.

For additional information on Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly Process, please click the links below:

You can also get your own custom wire harness estimate with our Wire Harness Estimator

In addition, click here for an Instant Quote on Braided Ground Straps.

Last week, we discussed creating a positive work environment. Music certainly helps the cause. Whistling while you work keeps the day humming along.

What do you listen to while you work? We have compiled the top 20 songs that the Wire Harness Department listens to while building wire harnesses.

It is this collection of songs that keep our workers focused while they work.

Check out our variety of songs and you may just find a new favorite for yourself!

 

20: White and Nerdy- Weird Al Yankovic

 Related image

19: YMCA- Village People

 Related image

18: Drift Away- Dobie Gray

 Image result for dobie gray drift away

17: Hand Clap- Fitz and the Tantrums

 Image result for fitz and the tantrums handclap

16: Wanted Dead or Alive- Bon Jovi

 Image result for wanted dead or alive bon jovi

15: Love Boat- Jack Jones

 Image result for who sings the love boat theme'

14: Purple People Eater- Sheb Wooley

 Image result for purple people eater

13: Amish Paradise-  Weird Al Yankovic

 Image result for amish paradise

12: Jumping Jack Flash- The Rolling Stones

 Image result for rolling stones jumpin jack flash

11: Carry On My Wayward Son- Kansas

 Image result for carry on my wayward son kansas

10: Love Shack- B-52s

 Related image

9: I’m Gonna Be (500 miles)- The Proclaimers

 Image result for 500 miles

8: Sweet Caroline- Neil Diamond

 Image result for sweet caroline

7: Fight For Your Right- Beastie Boys

 Image result for fight for your right to party

6: Eye of the Tiger- Survivor

 Image result for eye of the tiger

5: Hey Jude- The Beatles

 Image result for hey jude

4: Me and Bobby McGee- Janis Joplin

 Image result for me and bobby mcgee

3: One Week- Barenaked Ladies

 Image result for 1 week barenaked ladies

2: Simple Man- Lynyrd Skynyrd

 Image result for simple man lynyrd skynyrd

1: Bohemian Rhapsody- Queen

  Image result for bohemian rhapsody

Now that you have checked out our Wire Harness Department’s favorite songs you may be interested to do some wire work of your own! Check out our Custom Wire Harness Estimator for a fast quote to get you started on your next project!

Also, check out our blog for more interesting news and articles like our Top 10s, What Not to Dos, and much more!

For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

Wire Harness Estimate

Need a price on a Wire Harness Assembly, like RIGHT NOW?! Traditionally, receiving Wire Harness Estimates could take hours or even days. Well, thanks to some hard work and innovation that problem is now solved. Therefore, you can now receive a Wire Harness Estimate within minutes (or even seconds depending on how fast you type). Furthermore, you should stop by and check out the brand new Falconer Electronics Wire Harness Estimator.

Wire Harness Estimate in 6 Simple Steps 

The Wire Harness Estimator offers you a simple 6 step process. Therefore, with each step, you can easily enter product information. Once complete, you hit submit. Also, within seconds your Wire Harness Estimate will be waiting for you. We send it straight to your email box.

Wire Harness Estimate

  1. Select your wire
  2. Enter the number of wires
  3. Select your terminals
  4. Choose add-ons – such as sleeving, heat shrink, labels, or wire ties
  5. Don’t see an item you need –
  6. you can type in a request
  7. Finally, submit

At any time you are also free to submit a drawing.

Are you creating a prototype?

Do you need to test a new product?

Also, do you need a Wire Harness Estimate quick? No problem. You can breeze through the Wire Harness Estimator completely free of charge and no obligations.

Do you have questions on Wire Harness Components? Click here.

Custom Wire Harness Assembly 

What type of industries do we serve? Our wire harnesses can be found in the healthcare industry, auto and truck lighting, heating systems, locomotive products and much more.  

Commercial Power Strips

Commercial Power Strips manufactured by Falconer Electronics can be found working relentlessly at numerous major brick and mortar retail stores at product displays. Also, we produce our own wire harnesses for all of our power strips.

Portable Work Lights 

We even produce wire harnesses for our own proprietary product line. We have portable work lights. This line includes magnetic trouble lights as well as magnetic spotlights.

MLC-50-C3 Trouble Light

 

Thank you for reading this post on Wire Harness Estimate. For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

Supplies Components

Supply or not supply? That is the question for today.

When outsourcing to a custom manufacturer, a common question occurs, “Who Supplies Components When Outsourcing Production?” Do you supply your own parts and materials or is it more cost-effective for the custom manufacturer to purchase materials? We will address this topic from the perspective of a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

This is our continued series on Outsourcing Wire Harness Manufacturing. Below includes links to previous topics on this discussion:

Outsource Your Wire Harness Assembly Process – Part 1

Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 2

How to Find a New Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 3 

Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 4

Discreet Questions to Determine Character Compatibility and Financial Viability – Part 5

Touring a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 6

What if I want to supply my own products such as wire, connectors and other components to save money? 

Supplying your own products to a custom manufacturer offers several positives and negatives. It works best to communicate clearly with the manufacturer on the pros and cons of either option.

The question is do you really save money?  One-size fits all does not apply here. There are many variables to consider which option makes the most sense (or more importantly – make the most CENTS).

Pros and Cons 

Let’s take a look at the Pros and Cons of supplying your own parts and components: 

Positives 

Several benefits fall in your favor by taking the initiative to order and supply your own parts when outsourcing:

  1. You control the ordering process and supply chain. 
  2. Ordering your own parts allows you to have full disclosure of pricing on the cost of goods.
  3. First-hand knowledge of availability or stock-outs on your product.
  4. Better control over delivery times. 
  5. Negotiate your own discounts with the vendor. 

Negatives 

Ordering or supplying your own parts may be welcomed by the manufacturer. On the other hand, this approach could be disruptive to the manufacturer. Here are a few negatives to consider:

  1. The time you spend ordering parts.
  2. The time you spend coordinating deliveries.
  3. Lost opportunity of volume discounts available to the manufacturer due to their purchasing power.
  4. Product knowledge and expertise that the manufacturer possesses.
  5. The variety of shipments arriving at manufacturer at different times throws off their production schedule for your product.
  6. The receiving department at the manufacturer must be informed of delivery. This communication is crucial for the manufacturer in order to properly schedule production of your products.
  7. The manufacturer must implement a means to monetize the receipt of your goods that you order. It is in neither parties interest to not account for labor, handling, and the overhead expense of receiving and storing goods.

Supplies Components

An important question to ask yourself: Is your time better spent focusing on other areas of the business? Did you partner with a company that you trust enough to delegate the purchases to the custom manufacturer?

You partnered or hired the custom manufacturer due to their proficiency, expertise, and ability to deliver a quality product on time. Is it worth your time, hassle and energy to locate new vendors and product in areas that are either new to you or where you are lacking purchasing power and strong vendor relationships?

For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

Part 6! We almost feel like the Harry Potter Series (my daughter would be proud of that analogy). Each week we have been addressing the due diligence and selection process when deciding to outsource wire harness manufacturing. Today we will explore taking a tour of a custom manufacturer. In particular, Touring a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

Below includes previous topics on this discussion:

Outsource Your Wire Harness Assembly Process – Part 1

Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 2

How to Find a New Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 3 

Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 4

Discreet Questions to Determine Character Compatibility and Financial Viability – Part 5

It is Now Time to Plan a Visit and Take a Tour

So you continue plunging through the due diligence process to select a custom manufacturer.

You have performed dozens of Google searches to narrow down the field.

You have evaluated plenty of websites and social media pages until they all start to blend together.

Hopefully, several companies are standing out from the crowd.

Emails have been exchanged and phone calls have been made to break the ice.

There may be one or two that really seem like head and shoulders above the rest.

You are feeling good.

It is now time to plan a visit and tour each facility.

A physical visit to top candidates in person is vital with your decision. You might even want to consider a surprise visit (“Hey, I was in the neighborhood” – even if 500 miles away).

Here is an excellent article from the Harvard Business Review regarding plant tours (Even though this was written 20 years ago): https://hbr.org/1997/05/why-and-how-to-take-a-plant-tour

Eyes Wide Open and the Attitude of a Harsh Critic

It is extremely important to go into the tour with eyes wide open and the attitude of a harsh critic.

(Actually, this was just a great excuse to get Judge Judy into one of our blogs).

What to Look for When Touring a Wire Harness Manufacturer

Below is a list to consider when Touring a Wire Harness Manufacturer:

  1. Do you find the building and property presentable or unkempt? (Unmowed grass, disheveled parking lot, garbage, broken windows, etc…)
  2. Office presentable or unkempt? (Top of the line everything or dated to the 1960’s)
  3. Are you warmly greeted?
  4. Management, staff, and employees pleasant and welcoming?
  5. Do employees look happy and hustling?
  6. Are tools and equipment organized and well maintained?
  7. Are the warehouse and inventory efficiently organized?
  8. Is the Shipping dock clear of clutter?
  9. Are you impressed or underwhelmed with the team and operation?
  10. Are there any red flags that make you uneasy?
  11. Do employees have cell phones out?
  12. Check kitchen area – is it clean or organized and dirty?
  13. Are restrooms clean?
  14. Are there any key employees that do not come out to meet you?
  15. Evaluating the quantity and quality of staff, does the company seem to be top heavy?
  16. What are the years of service of the management team?
  17. Be prepared with tough questions regarding your product and process to determine if they are indeed experts in their field.
  18. Is the management team short and brief with you? Is this a good sign that they are focused and busy or are they rude and distracted?
  19. On the other hand, if they meet with you for a long period are they too lackadaisical or not busy?
  20. Do they seem eager to earn your business or desperate?

Outsourcing your product production to a custom manufacturer is similar to finding quality daycare for your child. You need to find a company that you Trust, Trust, Trust!

There is a saying that if something is not a “HELL YAH” then it is simply a “No”.

Check back next week for Part 7 of our series on Outsourcing.

For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

Outsourcing manufacturing operations can deliver tremendous benefits to your business. Unfortunately, there are many risks attached as well. Today we continue discussions by addressing Discreet Questions to Determine Character Compatibility and Financial Viability. Asking tough questions will help narrow down your selection process. 

This post is Part 5 of our series on Outsourcing Custom Manufacturing Operations. In particular, Outsourcing Wire Harness Manufacturing Processes.

Previous topics have included: 

Outsource Your Wire Harness Assembly Process – Part 1

Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 2

How to Find a New Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 3

Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 4 

Discreet Questions Can Save You Down the Road 

So you have entered the interview process to select a new custom manufacturer to partner with. Now you are digging deeper in the due diligence process to see who is exactly the best fit. 

Financial stability is certainly one of your absolute top concerns. If you are both small businesses, discovering actual financial figures or intimate information may be difficult to obtain. Even though this is crucial, especially if the project or product represents a significant portion of your sales. 

So what steps or strategies can you take to discover the financial viability of this new prospect?

Below are a number of discreet questions that you could ask that would potentially reveal any red flags for you. 

Discreet Questions

Prior Outsourcing Experience – That Ended Poorly 

This blog is being written from a poor previous experience with outsourcing services to a fulfillment center. There were many warning signs. Actually, what is above warning signs? Shots fired across the bow? 

We would pay the company tens of thousands of dollars each month which was paid on our credit card. On two separate occasions, the company ran our credit card twice, on the same day. The first time seemed like a simple mistake. “Oops, our credit card processor must have processed the card twice. So sorry. We will issue a refund.” Which they eventually did, many days later. 

The second time, same excuse but now had our team gravely concerned. To make matters worse, it was discovered that the property and liability insurance had not been paid. Needless to say, the relationship ended very poorly. We moved out at a huge expense. The fulfillment center went out of business so after. Even though we thankfully dodged a major disaster, this was a painful and expensive lesson. 

Important Questions to Ask Yourself 

Here are a few questions to ask yourself through this process: 

  • Does the company represent itself well? 
  • Do you have similar goals and a common business philosophy?
  • Is this a team of people with integrity that you can trust impeccably? 
  • Is this a partner that is committed to your profitability and success or are you another opportunity for the owner to support a lavish lifestyle? 
Discreet Questions to Determine Character Compatibility and Financial Viability 

Here are a number of discreet questions to consider to help determine the financial viability of the company as well as the character level of ownership:

  1. Strike up a conversation on hobbies. Do they have expensive hobbies: Golf at Pebble Beach, mountain climbing the Himalayas, scuba diving off the Thailand, flying a helicopter, Yacht, own a collection of Ferrari’s, etc… you get the point. 
  2. Find out the type of car they drive. “My spouse is looking for a new car. What type of car do you drive or recommend?”
  3. If you live near the prospect, casually ask what neighborhood they live in. Sorry to get overly “stalkerish”, find out their neighborhood and drive by or if you are not nearby look up on Google. This will let you know their lifestyle.
  4. Ask for bank references 
  5. ……business references 
  6. ……character references
  7. ……customer references
  8. Google the owner to discover any past felonies, convictions or other bad news. 
  9. Check their Facebook page – see what they do in their personal time. 
  10. Check other social media – Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and Pinterest.
  11. Look for Videos on YouTube.
  12. Check mutual connections on LinkedIn. 
  13. Seek out mutual professional connections and casually start asking around for any character concerns.  
  14. Take a physical tour of the company and facility – look for any warning signs.
  15. Meet with company supervisors.
  16. Casually speak with as many employees as possible to get a gauge on the owner/management and conditions of the company.
  17. Look for matching or mismatched priorities – expensive office furniture, overstaffed, excessive non-business essentials (foosball table, games, kegs, etc).
  18. Get a gauge on morale at the company.
  19. Does the owner wear an expensive wardrobe or jewelry?
  20. Last, ask the owner for an opportunity to have a mutual meeting with their accountant to view audited financials. Even offer to have the meeting at your expense. 

Going the extra mile with your due diligence process will save you a tremendous amount of grief and frustration down the road. 

For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

Our New Wire Harness Estimator

Falconer Electronics, Inc recently announced a new tool, The Wire Harness Estimator, to assist with determining the cost of a Wire Harness Assembly. You can check out our estimator here.

The Wire Harness Estimator allows you to quickly and easily enter the components that make up your wire harness and within seconds you will receive an email with the estimate.

Below you will find helpful definitions as a guide to use the Wire Harness Estimator.

Wire Types And Their Uses

Stranded: When a wire needs to be flexible in a product.

Flexible Ground Braid: Grounding connection between two terminals while still having the ability to move or vibrate.

Ribbon Cable – Gray: Usually used to make connections between electrical devices such as computers, DVD players, or hard drives.

THHN – Solid: For a fixed application like traveling through a straight formed conduit.

THHN – Stranded: For an application where there is a need for flexible wire. As when placing wire around corners or in power boxes.

Wire Gauges And How They Are Defined

Wire Gauges We Offer:

22, 20, 18, 16, 14, 12, 10, 8, 6

Figure 1.1

Physical Size of Wire:

The physical size of a wire is defined by the number of operations that it takes to get it to that physical size. This process means that a 22 gauge wire is much smaller in size than a 6 gauge wire. This process is “Wire Drawing” and it looks like Figure 1.2. Therefore, “Wire Drawing” is what gives us all of the different gauges in Figure 1.1. 

The smaller the wire gauge the less current that is traveling through the wire itself. Also meaning the smaller gauged wires have less amperage they can handle.

Wire Drawing

Figure 1.2 (Kingway)

Wire Colors And Their Uses

Black: Hot/ Positive

White: Common/ Negative

Green: Ground

Red: Secondary Line: Hot/Positive

Blue, Yellow, Brown: Available for customer’s personal choice to connect one point to another.

Terminal Types And Their Purposes

Ring Terminal: To connect two points through a wire and is attached with a screw. Figure 2.1

Fork Terminal: Much like that Ring Terminal it connects two points through a wire and is attached with a screw. However, it is also useful if you need to remove the terminal from a device because of its open-ended design. Figure 2.2

Quick Connect / Disconnect Terminal: Terminals that attach to another terminal by sliding into place. There are female and male connecting terminals. Figure 2.3 and Figure 2.4 

Ferrule Terminal: Fastening, joining, sealing, or reinforcing wires to each other. Also has many different applications due to the many different types there are. Figure 2.5

Ring Terminal option on the wire harness estimator            Fork Terminal option on the wire harness estimator                       Quick Connect / Disconnect Terminal option for wire harness estimator      Quick Connect / Disconnect Terminal option for wire harness estimator    Ferrule Terminal option for the wire harness estimator

Figure 2.1              Figure 2.2         Figure 2.3        Figure 2.4     Figure 2.5

Terminal Insulation Type And Their Purposes

 Insulated

  • Partially Insulated- Usually on ring or fork terminals. Used mostly to prevent crossing/ shorting of the wires by preventing contact with other wires.
  • Fully Insulated- Mostly on Quick Connect/ Disconnect terminals. The purpose of fully insulated terminals is to prevent contact between terminals. Therefore, the wires would not be in contact with each other in small spaces.

Uninsulated-

Terminals that need to be crimped in place or soldered in place. Are also, usually finished with heat shrink tubing.

Terminal Stud Sizes And Why It’s Important To Know What Size You Need 

Terminal Stud Sizes We Offer:

2,4,6,8,10, 1/4″

Terminal sizes

 Figure 3.1 

Why is the terminal stud size important:

If your assembly requires attachment of wires by screws or other hardware you need to be sure that you have a proper size to fit the hardware you are using.

Therefore, if you are using a 1/4″ screw in your assembly but you have a #2 terminal stud it will be impossible to attach your wire to your assembly. As you can see in Figure 3.1 the sizes are very different.

The other important thing to remember when looking at terminal stud size is they have to be able to fit your screw or hardware. This means that a 1/4″ terminal stud will actually be slightly larger than a 1/4″.

Wire Harness Add-Ons And Their Uses

Spiral Wrap: Bundles wires together while still providing flexibility

Wire Ties: Bundling wires into separate groups, separating wires from other wires in the harness, also, holding a wire into a specific direction

Shrink Tubing: Protecting and insulating wire from outside elements

Contact Us

For more information on our wire harnesses check out our Wire Harness page.

For additional information on the Wire Harness Assembly Process, please click the links below:

Lastly, let’s get social. Please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

  

 

 

 

 

 

Asking Challenging Questions Gains Valuable Information 

When considering outsourcing services to a custom manufacturer of any industry, asking challenging questions is critical for selecting the best fit possible. Having a list of tough questions prepared brings tremendous value to the process. Since we are a Wire Harness Manufacturer, we will specifically address Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

At this stage, you have narrowed the field down to either a single or hopefully a few candidates. Now is time to begin the interview process. Asking tough interview questions will help lead you to the valued partner that you desire. This partnership will take your business to the next level. At least, that is the goal.

For example, do you find the company accessible and responsive? To vastly increase our response time with customers, we recently launched the Falconer Electronics Wire Harness Estimator. This new tool allows customers the ability to gather an estimate immediately. Click here for more details.

Outsourcing Your Wire Harness Assembly Process 

We are continuing our series on going through the entire due diligence process of selecting a custom manufacturer to outsource products. This week we suggest a list of questions to ask when Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

So far in previous weeks, topics have included:

Outsource Your Wire Harness Assembly Process – Part 1

Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 2

How to Find a New Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 3 

Being overly prepared and asking the right questions can save you a great deal of grief and frustration down the road. Hastily jumping into a new relationship with a custom manufacturer that turns sour can be devastating and difficult to recover depending on the severity.

50 Questions When Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer

To help discover if you are compatible with a custom manufacturer that you are interviewing, below are a list of helpful questions to consider:

  1. What industries do you serve?
  2. Please describe your ideal customer?
  3. Greatest victory in your business career or at your company?
  4. Biggest let down or setback and how did you resolve?
  5. Could you share exciting changes taking place at your business?
  6. What are you absolutely best at?
  7. What are your greatest weaknesses?
  8. How long have you been in business?
  9. Who are your key employees?
  10. Describe the experience of staff?
  11. Do I have access with the floor supervisor?
  12. Who is my main point of contact?
  13. What are your business hours?
  14. Do I have a contact on weekends?
  15. Who do I contact for an emergency?
  16. Are you properly insured? (Check with your insurance company to confirm requirements)
  17. Can you supply 3 customer references?
  18. Are you willing to sign a non-disclosure form?
  19. What is your lead time on orders?
  20. Are you able to tackle rush orders?
  21. Should the customer supply parts or do you prefer to supply parts?
  22. Do you have aggressive discount programs with vendors?
  23. Do you take advantage of early payment discounts with your vendors?
  24. What are your payment terms?
  25. Do accept credit card for payment?
  26. Are discounts available for early payment?
  27. What is your shipping policy?
  28. Could we compare discounts with UPS/FedEx to see who has best rates?
  29. Who is responsible for damaged goods during shipping?
  30. Do you accept blanket orders?
  31. Will you inventory our raw parts or finished goods when necessary?
  32. Are you willing to purchase new tools or equipment to complete projects?
  33. Can we work with you on projections?
  34. What software do you use for inventory management and scheduling?
  35. Do one or two customers represent more than 50% of your annual sales?
  36. Have you ever been sued or in a lawsuit?
  37. Have you ever gone bankrupt?
  38. How do we handle damaged goods or parts not working?
  39. Can you describe your testing process and quality control?
  40. What is the company mission or vision statement?
  41. Is your company tech savvy?
  42. Do you have a succession plan or exit strategy in place?
  43. What makes your company stand above the competition?
  44. Facets of your business that demonstrate your commitment to your customer’s profitability?
  45. Any industry standards or certificates achieved?
  46. Do you have a safety protocol?
  47. What is your capacity level?
  48. Have you experienced layoffs recently?
  49. Are you profitable?
  50. Please explain the reason a recent customer stopped buying from you?

Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer

 

Asking excellent questions goes a long way with any relationship. This list is just a suggestive list of helpful questions to consider when Interviewing a Wire Harness Manufacturer.

 

To learn more about Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly process, please click on the links below:

Thank you for reading this post. For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

New Wire Harness Manufacturer

Trying to Find a New Wire Harness Manufacturer? You have landed on the right place. As a Custom Wire Harness Manufacturer since 1985, our team at Falconer Electronics has worked with hundreds of customers ranging from many different industries. 

This blog post continues our series on maximizing the due diligence process when searching for a new custom manufacturer to outsource production. In particular, partnering with a New Wire Harness Manufacturer. Each week we are providing a helpful step by step process to provide guidance with your search. 

Previous posts include: 

Outsource Your Wire Harness Assembly Process – Part 1

Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer – Part 2

This week we discuss the process of discovering a New Wire Harness Manufacturer. 

How to Find a New Wire Harness Manufacturer? 

Partnering with to a New Wire Harness Manufacturer would be extremely beneficial for your company. Once you have decided to outsource your Wire Harness Assembly process, now the search begins. 

Unless you already have a candidate in mind, most likely you will kick start the process by relying on connections within your network. A great place to start includes the list below: 

  1. Vendors
  2. Suppliers
  3. Customers
  4. Chamber of Commerce or other local connections and business organizations 
  5. Trade Associations

If you lack successful connections going this route, no fear. Call on your dear friend Google. Conducting a few Google searches will show you local and national Wire Harness Manufacturing companies. 

Is geography a critical factor? For example, if you were looking for a supplier of wooden pallets, you need somebody extremely close otherwise shipping costs would be brutal and cost prohibitive. 

With a Wire Harness Assembly, shipping costs are not prohibitive and detrimental. Partnering with the right company in another part of the country can still be an effective relationship. 

Once you have discovered a worthy prospect, begin conducting company research to see if this is a good fit for you. 

Check Out the Company Website:

  1. First, explore the company website. Does the website represent the company as a partner that you can trust?
  2. Does the company reveal itself having the staff, tools, resources, and ability to tackle your project?
  3. Do they serve your industry?
  4. Do they have the experience and expertise to take on your project? 
  5. Proximity? Do they need to be within a certain distance of your facility? 

Check out their Social Media:

  1. Is the company active on social media and communicating their culture?
  2. Does it fit with yours?
  3. Does the company provide helpful tips?
  4. Communicate the company mission? Does the mission fit with yours? 
  5. Can you easily submit a drawing of your wire harness assembly? 
  6. When you contact them, do you receive a quick response? 

Below are a few questions to consider asking: 

  1. Types of customers – What industry does the company target? Do they understand your needs? Can they speak your language? Do you feel a chemistry and kindred spirit with this company? Do they have the flexibility to speed up when during your busier times? Can they adjust to varying seasonal demands? 
  2. Vendor relationships – Do they have outstanding vendor relationships? Do they have purchasing power? Are they willing to negotiate and fight for the lowest cost on product for you? Do they have strong cash flow and pay their bills on time so there are no delays in purchasing your product? 

New Wire Harness Manufacturer

Next week with our series on selecting a New Wire Harness Manufacturer to partner with, we will dig further into questions that you can ask during the interview process. 

For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Wire Harness Estimate

Introducing the FEI Wire Harness Estimator

Falconer Electronics, Inc (FEI) proudly announces launching the brand new FEI Wire Harness Estimator. Our team is extremely excited to share this new tool with customers: https://falconerelectronics.com/custom-wire-harness-estimator/

Especially those who are eager to capture an estimate or ballpark price on their Wire Harness Assembly quickly and easily. Below offers a step by step process when using the FEI Wire Harness Estimator. 

Steps to Complete the FEI Wire Harness Estimator

 

Step 1 – Select Wire Type 

FEI Wire Harness Estimator

SELECT YOUR UNCUT WIRE (or wires): 

You may select multiple wires – Click “Add to Estimate” after each selection 

Options include:

Wire Stranded

  • Available Colors – Black, White, Green, Red, Blue, Yellow, Brown
  • Available Gauges – 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22  

Flexible Ground Braid 

  • Uninsulated  
  • 1/4″ and 1/2″ 

Ribbon Cable – Gray 

  • Available Color – Gray or Color-coded 
  • Conductor – 10, 14, 16, 20, 26, 40 

THHN – Solid 

  • Available Color – Black, White, Green, Red, Gray, Orange 
  • Available Gauge – 12 Gauge Only 

THHN – Strand 

  • Available Colors – Black, White, Green 
  • Available Gauge – 12 Gauge Only 

Select Length – The TOTAL length of wire required for a single assembly – This also applies for multiple wires. Select the length of each wire. 

Click “ADD TO ESTIMATE” 

The Estimator allows you to Add multiple wires.

Review your selection – if ready to proceed – click “NEXT STEP”

 

STEP 2 – Select the Number of Individual Wires 

 

Wire Harness Estimator

This section will include the TOTAL number of Individual Wires in your wire harness assembly

Click “NEXT STEP”

 

STEP 3 – Select Your Terminal 

Wire Harness Estimator

This section allows you the opportunity to select a specific manufacturer part number. Enter the manufacturer part number in the space provided and hit SEARCH. The product will populate into the estimate. 

If your specific part number is not available, you may select from the list of “house” parts below: 

  • Ring Terminal
  • Fork Terminal
  • Quick Connect/Disconnect Terminals
  • Ferrules Terminal

Select Quantity (for a Single Wire Harness) 

Click “ADD TO ESTIMATE” 

You may add multiple terminals and hit “ADD TO ESTIMATE” each time

Click “NEXT STEP” 

 

STEP 4 – Select Add-ons 

 

Wire Harness Estimator

 

  • Spiral Wrap
  • Expandable Sleeving 
  • Wire Ties 
  • Heat Shrink
  • Wire Labels 
  • Wire Label Flags 

Enter Length in inches 

Click “ADD TO ESTIMATE” 

You may add multiple Add-ons in this section. Please hit “ADD TO ESTIMATE” after each selection. 

Click “NEXT STEP” 

 

STEP 5 – Component Request 

 

Wire Harness Estimator

This section allows you the opportunity to add any additional components or helpful notes to help determine your estimate. 

Any items added to the “Components Request” section will NOT be added to the initial estimate. You will receive a separate email including the additional components to your wire harness assembly estimate. 

 

STEP 6 – Review and Submit 

Wire Harness Estimator

 

The Summary page allows you the opportunity to review your entries and make sure that everything looks accurate. 

Once you are satisfied with your selection simply enter your name and email address. You may also enter a project number to help keep track of each wire harness assembly estimate. 

Enter the correct number for the captcha and hit SUBMIT. 

You will receive your estimate within seconds in your email box. 

 

Questions

Please call 716-665-4176 at any step of the process with questions from 7-3:30 EST or email [email protected] 

We are excited to offer this new program and welcome your constructive feedback. 

To learn more about these exciting products please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and LinkedIn,.

Last week we discussed, when is the right time to consider Outsourcing Your Wire Harness Assembly Process. We have found several scenarios where a customer approaches us for the first time when they are Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer. Let’s role play. Below are a few examples where a new customer finds themselves seeking a new supplier…….

New Product Design and Prototypes

Congratulations! You have just completed a brand new electrical product design. You and your team (or maybe you are a team of one) just exhausted weeks and even months designing your new product that is going to be a home run! Now what? You need a completed prototype. Also, an estimate to see if your new design can be produced at a competitive price.

You can go to the Falconer Electronics Wire Harness Estimator for an estimate on your prototype. You will find the Wire Harness Estimator easy to use and works extremely fast. A quick estimate allows you to determine the potential cost and competitiveness of your new product.

Jumping Into Electronics 

You are in the purchasing department of a company expanding into electrical products for the first time. Management has challenged you to seek out and find the company who best demonstrates the ability to tackle this project.

For example, let’s say a mid-sized manufacturer is expanding into electrical wiring.  We recently began working with a company that specializes in handicap transportation. They produced a new proprietary product line requiring wire harnesses and printed circuit boards. It was a significant savings for the company to outsource the wire harness assembly and printed circuit boards rather than to attempt to conquer the project themselves.

Vendor Divorce 

Unfortunately, you and your current supplier are no longer compatible. Who changed? It is like a marriage deteriorating quickly where “living like this” is no longer an option. Either quality has deteriorated, deadlines are no longer met, or prices continue to increase. Whatever the case may be, it is time for a change.  Losing a customer is deeply disappointing and discouraging. Our team works eagerly to maintain rock solid marriages with our customers. We also love working with new customers on the rebound.

In-House No Longer Working Out 

Your company no longer finds it efficient or profitable to produce wire harness assemblies in-house. The task falls on your lap to find a highly qualified Wire Harness Manufacturer. Selecting a company that you trust is essential! This recently happened with a large customer. They found it much more cost effective and profitable to outsource their wire harness assemblies. Our team went on full throttle to make this a smooth transition.

Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer

Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer

Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer does not need to be a stressful process. Outsourcing Your Wire Harness Assembly to an experienced company with a seasoned staff lends a tremendous competitive advantage for your company. A company that completes projects with the highest quality, effective pricing, and on-time delivery adds tremendously to your bottom line. Teaming up with a company dedicated to your success is critical.

 

This post continues our series on the process of Outsourcing and Selecting a Wire Harness Manufacturer. Please continue reading each week as we explore the entire buyer’s journey and due diligence process when determining which Wire Harness Manufacturer will best satisfy your needs.

For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Wire Harness Estimator

Determining the cost of a new Wire Harness Assembly just became a whole lot easier thanks to some hard work and innovation. Falconer Electronics, Inc., (FEI) a wire harness manufacturer since 1985, proudly announces the new online FEI Wire Harness Estimator (https://falconerelectronics.com/custom-wire-harness-estimator/). 

Introducing the FEI Wire Harness Estimator

What is a Wire Harness Estimator? 

The brand new online FEI Wire Harness Estimator allows buyers, product designers, and engineers the ability to enter the specs of a wire harness assembly quickly and easily.  This straightforward approach eliminates the need to wait days or weeks for pricing out your wire harness. 

Fast & Easy to Use 

The Wire Harness Estimator delivers an estimated cost of your wire harness assembly within seconds of submission directly to your email. Utilize the simplistic step by step process as you select each item required in your assembly.

You can select your wire type, wire gauge, wire color, wire length, the number of individual wires, and wire terminals. 

Looking for additional connectors or other items not on the list? No problem! All you need to do is enter the manufacturer part number and the estimator adds that item to the estimate. 

Lastly, you can finalize your estimate with any add ons such as a spiral wrap, expandable sleeving, wire ties, and heat shrink. Wire labels and label flags can also be added. 

No Commitments – No Obligation 

The only requirement is entering your name and email address. You will instantly receive an email with the estimate. 

No commitments – no obligation. 

The estimate does NOT represent a formal quote. This is an outstanding opportunity to provide a short cut for you to capture an estimate or a ball park price for your new wire harness assembly. 

For detailed pricing on quantity breaks or a formal quote, you are welcome to submit a drawing and a request for proposal. A team member from Falconer Electronics will contact you with an actual quote fitting your timeline and quantity needed. 

You can call 716-665-4176 or email [email protected] with any questions to walk through the process. 

No minimums required and we welcome customers of all sizes. 

Thank you so much for reading this post. We invite your constructive feedback on how the Wire Harness Estimator can help your business. 

We would love to hear from you. Please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and  LinkedIn for more electronic info.

 

 

 

Is it Time to Outsource Your Wire Harness Assembly Process? 

“Should we begin outsourcing our Wire Harness Assembly Process?”

This a common question our new customers typically ask themselves before reaching out to us.

Many times in life, if the question crosses your mind, then odds are it is time to act.

For example, is it time to discard those old ratty sneakers that offend everyone around you? Most likely it is time to let go.

Do you eat the leftover seafood from Monday night – on Saturday? Probably not a good idea.

You question if you are too old or if it is still cool to wear your KC and the Sunshine Band t-shirt – Duran Duran – New Kids on the Block – or whatever generation you are from. Then it might be time to hang it up.  Actually, that is a bad example. It is never time to grow up. Anyway…..

Wire Harness Assembly Process

If you have been asking yourself if it is time to outsource your Wire Harness Assembly Process, odds are the time has arrived. At the very least, it certainly doesn’t hurt to investigate further.

Start by identifying what event occurred or how this question arrived. Understanding when, how and why this became an internal burden is an important step.

What hold ups, hang ups, pull downs, drag downs, hiccups, throw ups, headaches, heartaches, belly aches, or pain in the “you know what” has occurred. Think about the moment where you thought to yourself, “there must be a better way”.

Start With Performing an Internal SWOT 

Start with a SWOT on your internal Wire Harness Assembly process. What are the company strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats? Especially if you keep this process in-house.

Do the same procedure and create a SWOT if you were to outsource your Wire Harness Assembly Process.

The next question becomes, “Who can solve this problem so we can focus on our core business”?

A key to building a successful business is partnering with experts in a given field. Successful companies exist by solving a problem. Solving a problem requires developing an area of expertise. A proficiency that stands above the competition.

Partnering with Seasoned Professionals 

You need to partner with a company that thrives and works relentlessly to gain a competitive advantage. Also, one that creates economies of scale for you. Most importantly, a solution so tremendous that it just doesn’t make sense to perform these tasks on your own anymore.

Can you change the oil in your car in less than 30 minutes? Is your time worth more than the price to have a quick stop oil change shop (Ex: JiffyLube) perform the task?

As a business owner or manager, you hire professionals to strengthen your business and protect your assets. This list includes hiring an accountant, attorney, or insurance broker who have invested the time and energy to educate themselves on business law, tax codes or proper insurance policies. You rely heavily on these individuals to help you make critical business decisions. Surrounding yourself with highly trained and qualified professionals has the potential to pay huge dividends.

Outsourcing certain tasks within the manufacturing process offer similar benefits. Teaming up with an all-star team creates a winning formula allowing you to maximize profits while minimizing risks.

This post kicks off an eight part series on Outsourcing Your Wire Harness Assembly Process. We will weigh in on the due diligence and selection process as well as many other strategies and helpful tips.

For more info on electronics manufacturing, please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

 

Wire harnesses have the capability to connect multiple points through the use of their terminals and connectors. They can provide a channel for electrical power and even information, making the connections electronics need to function.

We use electronics every day to make our lives easier and most of them contain wire harnesses. Much like our blog 5 Things That You Didn’t Know Contain PCBs we have compiled a variety of objects that contain wire harnesses.

 

5: Trains, Planes, and Automobiles

                       Image result for automobiles

It may not be every day that you ride in an airplane or a train. However, it’s a safe bet almost if not every day you are in a car. If you are anything like the majority of people your begin hitting buttons as soon as you get into your vehicle. Whether it is the radio, the windows, or air controls all of these buttons work because of wire harnesses. Even the ignition of the car is functional due to wire harnesses. Think of how different a car ride would be without someone constantly changing the radio station or turning the heat or air conditioning up and down. Ok maybe that wouldn’t be so bad but when you’re the one doing all that it’s pretty nice.

4: Construction Machinery

They built houses and buildings before they had construction machinery, but it took a long time and a lot of man power. Now a day we get frustrated when there is road construction and we’re stuck in traffic for an extra few minutes. Without wire harnesses all of the machinery and vehicles that help do these jobs quicker wouldn’t be here. Can you imagine being stuck in traffic for weeks while they built a building? Maybe that’s a good way to not get frustrated “At least they have machinery. I could be here for days”? That’s probably not realistic.

3: Microwaves and Ovens

                          

When you need a snack or dinner cooked you more than likely turn to either the microwave or the oven. (Especially in the winter months there is nothing like a nice hot meal right out of the oven). In the days before the modern ovens and way before the microwave, meals took all day. Now we can cook a pizza in under a half an hour and it can taste just like delivery. We can also heat up breakfast in the matter of a few minutes and be on our way. None of these foods that we find convenient would be available without the wire harnesses that help ovens and microwaves have the power that we are used to.

2: Computers, Printers, and Copiers

            

Computers have made lives easier by giving us information at our fingertips as well as being a tool to accomplish many different tasks (sometimes all at once).  Where would we be without social media and email? We would all still be stuck in a world of paper cuts and actual phone calls, can you imagine? Next time you log onto your computer give a silent thank you to the wire harnesses that have made your life so much easier.   

Printers and copiers are a staple in any office space. Without them time would be wasted writing everything by hand; especially if it’s a business that needs multiple copies of the same document. Printers and copiers have come a long way with changing technology. They now have wireless options so that you can make copies without being hard wired into them. Even with the new technologies wire harnesses are still a huge part of what makes copiers and printers work.

1: Televisions, DVD Players, and Blu Ray Players

               

Think of any form of entertainment that you have that involves a screen. Now picture if none of those things existed. That’s what the world would be like without wire harnesses. Wire harnesses make televisions function even throughout their many stages of development.  Without wire harnesses, there wouldn’t be any movies or shows to watch and there wouldn’t be any Netflix!

Without wire harnesses, there would be no reason to rush to buy the latest movie because there would be no way to watch it. Yes before there was T.V. there was radio, but those radios also had wire harnesses in them to make them work properly.  Next time you pop in a movie on a rainy Saturday or bundle up for some Netflix just remember that those things wouldn’t be possible without wire harnesses.

Wire harnesses do so much to keep our everyday lives running the way that we are used to. Most people don’t know how many everyday things wouldn’t be the same.

To learn more about wire harnesses check out our blog every Wednesday for our Wire Harnesses Wednesdays.

Also check out our Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

 

  

Custom-Commercial-Power-Strips

Custom Electronics Manufacturer in the U.S. Since 1985

Falconer Electronics, Inc (FEI) has proudly served its community as a U.S. Custom Electronics Manufacturer since 1985. Our customers love the convenience and flexibility of working with a domestic manufacturer.

There are tremendous benefits gained when working with a domestic manufacturer. Especially since partnering with a U.S. Custom Electronics Manufacturer drastically reduces costs and lead time.

The three areas that FEI specializes in include:

  1. Wire Harness Assembly
  2. Commercial Outlet Strips
  3. Printed Circuit Boards

Benefits of Partnering with a Custom Electronics Manufacturer in the U.S.

Outsourcing your Wire Harnesses, Commercial Outlet Strips or Printed Circuit Boards to a U.S. Custom Electronics Manufacturer provides a list of competitive advantages for your company:

  • Time zone challenges do not exist – We get up super early and start our day at 6:00 am est.
  • Quick and easy communication where language barriers do not exist (except for our goofy accents).
  • Shipping charges are much cheaper.
  • QUICK turnaround time – we work fast!
  • Over 30 years of experience.
  • We lobby all of our tools, resources, and expertise to provide an outstanding customer experience.
  • “Made in the USA” is a symbol of pride and high quality. Hard working Americans at work producing incredible products.
  • Fast and convenient shipping options
  • Inventory management and control
  • Our purchasing power lowers your costs
  • Long-term relationship with vendors
  • Keeping our overhead costs as low as possible to pass savings on to our customers.  We are frugal! We consider ourselves part of your team and work relentlessly to keep prices down and dirty.
  • Accessibility – many of our customers visit our facility and we consider it a privilege to go on tour to visit our customers as well.
  • Supply chain efficiencies

Custom-Commercial-Power-Strips

Our experience, expertise, tools, knowledge, and resources become an extension of your business allowing you to do what you do best – Make your outstanding products and produce profits. One of the keys to the long-term success at FEI is our deep commitment to driving profits for our customers. The greater the ROI each customer enjoys from our products the better.

 

Thanks for reading our post and check out our Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest for more electronic info.

Wire Insulation Types

Wire Insulation Types

One of the key components of a wire is its insulation. However, there is a number of factors that come into play. Things such as stability and long life, dielectric properties, resistance to high temperature, resistance to moisture, mechanical strength, and flexibility. There are also so many different wire insulation types.

Furthermore, there is no single insulation that is ideal in every one of these areas. However, there are many key Types of Wire Insulation. Polyvinyl Chloride, Fluorinated Ethylene-Propylene, Polyethylene, Nylon, also Thermoplastic Rubber. Furthermore, each of these is a major insulator for wire containing electricity.

Key Types of Wire Insulation

Polyvinyl chloride (PVC):

Found in all of the major types of wire and cable.

Examples include:

  • Low voltage building wire insulation and jacketing
  • Low and medium voltage equipment cable jacketing
  • Also, control cable jacketing
  • Indoor telecommunications cable
  • Automotive wire
  • Finally, flexible Cords

 

 

 

 

 

It is a flame and abrasion resistant material. Which is specially compounded for general-purpose applications. Therefore, resisting flames, oil, ozone, sunlight, and most solvents.

Fluorinated ethylene-propylene (FEP): 

This is a melt-processible copolymer made of tetrafluoroethylene and hexafluoropropylene. Also, FEP has dielectric properties in addition to chemical inertness, heat resistance, weather resistance, as well as being tough and flexible.

Polyethylene:

Is lightweight, water-resistant, and chemically inert

 Different types of polyethylene:
  • Low-density (LDPE)
  • Linear low-density (LLDPE)
  • Medium-density (MDPE)
  • High-density (HDPE)
  • Chlorinated polyethylene (CPE)
  • Cross-linkable polyethylene (XLPE).

Polyethylene’s low dielectric constant allows for low capacitance and low electrical loss. Therefore, making it an ideal choice for audio, radio frequency, and high voltage applications.

Nylon:

Is a very flexible wire insulation. Also, it is usually extruded over softer insulation compounds.

Several Key Components:
  • Tough
  • Strong abrasion
  • Additionally, chemical resistance

Thermoplastic Rubber:

Has the ability to stretch to moderate elongations and return to its near original shape. Therefore, creating a longer life and better physical range than other materials

 Properties of Thermoplastic Rubber:
  • Higher processing speeds
  • Wider usable temperature range
  • In addition to, excellent heat, weather, and age resistance without curing.

Helpful Information and Connections

Thank you for reading our blog post on the various Wire Insulation Types.

To learn more about Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly process, please click on the links below:

You can also, check out our blog series on soldering printed circuit boards if you are a circuit board junkie!

Lastly, let’s get social! Please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedIn, and Pinterest for more electronic info.

Source:

https://www.osha.gov/

Striving for Perfection with Wire Harness Testing 

At Falconer Electronics, Wire Harness Manufacturing and Assembly runs through our veins. Having built literally millions upon millions of Wire Harnesses over the past 30 years, many of our employees say they could build a wire harness in their sleep. (Is that why they started bringing their pillows to work?) On a serious note, Wire Harness Testing is a core process with every order. Consistent and accurate Wire Harness Testing contributes greatly to our long-term and successful customer relationships. 

Wire Harness Testing Check List

Safety First! Wire Harness Testing requires extreme caution since live wires are involved. Unfortunately, electric shock and burns can turn a great day into a real bad day quickly. Mandatory personal protective equipment on the job includes gloves and safety glasses when testing a wire assembly.  

When performing Wire Harness Testing, our quality control department strictly follows the IPC/WHMA-A-620 Standard. This standard is a collection of visual Quality Acceptability Requirements for Cable, Wire and Harness Assemblies. 

Below includes a check list for testing wires in a wire harness assembly: 

  1. Accurate Labeling
     
  2. Check for Damaged Insulation or Defective Wires 
     
  3. Continuity
     
  4. Correct Wire Gauge
     
  5. Crimping
     
  6. Free of Moisture and Corrosion
     
  7. Optimum Wire Placement Within Connectors
     
  8. Pull Test
     
  9. Test for Broken Wires
     
  10. Test for Shorts

Wire Harness Testing

To learn more about the Wire Harness Manufacturing process, click on these links: Crimping Wires and Crimping Tools.

Thank you for taking the time to read our blog post on Wire Harness Testing. To learn more about the wire harness assembly process, please continue reading our weekly “Wire Harness Wednesday” blog series. 

 

Also, click on the following links to learn more on printed circuit boardssoldering circuit boards and soldering safety tips.  

Lastly, let’s get social! Please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedIn, and Pinterest for more electronic info.

 

Types of Wire Terminals When Building a Wire Harness

In a previous blog post, we light-heartedly declared ourselves as experts in matchmaking wires with wire terminals. Especially since we have been building wire harness assemblies for over 30 years. We had fun with that blog post and thought it would be helpful to dig deeper into the various Types of Wire Terminals.

Terminals are defined as “a device designed to terminate a conductor that is to be affixed to a post, stud, chassis, another tongue, etc., to establish an electrical connection.” Wire Terminals come in many different shapes and sizes depending on the size of the wire and screw. Several types of terminals include ring, spade, hook, quick-disconnect, bullet, butt terminals and flagged.

Wire terminals are available in insulated and non-insulated. Determining the best fit depends on your project or usage. Wire insulation provides a protective cover serving as a non-conductor. The insulation spares the wire from water and moisture as well as protects against extreme heat or cold. Wire insulation is typically available in vinyl, nylon and heat shrink.  Non-insulated terminals provide much more economic value with its low cost.  Also commonly used when extra protection is unnecessary.

When purchasing various Types of Wire Terminals, make sure that your purchase meets industry standards and project requirements.

Types of Wire Terminals

Ring Terminals

Types of Wire Insulation

A ring terminal is a round-ended terminal that easily allows a screw or stud to be attached. Ring terminals also called ring connectors, come in various sizes. It is crucial that the ring terminal is compatible with the wire gauge and stud size. Ring Terminals are either crimped or soldered to the wire. Available in insulated or non-insulated.

 

Spade Terminals

Spade Terminals are also called spade connectors or fork terminals due to the shape of the terminal. A spade terminal is available in various sizes depending on the gauge of the wire and stud size. The open-ended spade terminal is convenient to use allowing easy attachment or removal from the screw. Especially for wire harness projects that are tight on space for installation. Available in insulated or non-insulated. 

 

Hook Terminals

Similar to the Spade Terminal, Hook Terminals are convenient to use with an open end (imagine a tiny version of Captain Hook). Produced insulated or non-insulated, Hook Terminals offer a simplistic yet durable connection for a variety of projects.

 

Quick-Disconnect Terminals

A quick-disconnect terminal provides convenient and reliable use offering an easy connect and disconnect for two wires. Commonly found in auto, industrial and consumer products. Produced insulated or non-insulated, Quick-Disconnect Terminals deliver a stable and durable connection.

 

Bullet Terminals

Types of Wire Terminals

Also called Bullet Connectors, Bullet Terminals make an easy, reliable and secure connection. Simple to disconnect as well. Bullet terminals connect with the male and open ended round female connectors creating a high-quality connection. The connection with bullet terminals helps prevent corrosion and other potentially harmful materials from entering a wire harness.

 

Butt Terminals

A Butt Terminal connects or terminates single or multiple wires. Butt Terminals help prevent abrasion and cutting. This extra protection helps keep out moisture, corrosion, and other negative elements. Butt Terminals serve as a simple solution to extend wires due to the ability to mate and connect wires. Simply install each wire on the open end of the connector, then crimp both ends of the terminal to secure the connection. 

Flagged Terminals 

Flag Terminals also called flag connectors offer a convenient and secure connection. Flag terminals work well in tight spaces as well as when a quick-disconnect is too large. Provides a quick and easy connection and disconnect. Also available in insulated and non-insulated.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read our blog post on the various Types of Wire Terminals. To continue reading about the Wire Harness Manufacturing process, click on these links: Crimping Wires and Crimping Tools.

To learn more about the wire harness assembly process, please continue reading our weekly “Wire Harness Wednesday” blog series.

Also, click on the following links to learn more on printed circuit boardssoldering circuit boards and soldering safety tips.

Lastly, let’s get social! Please connect on FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedIn, and Pinterest for more electronic info.

 

 

Wire Harness Assembly

A Helpful List of Wire Harness Terms 

The list below includes a number of Wire Harness Terms and definitions. Many of our customers are new to outsourcing their wire harness assemblies. Hopefully, you will find these Wire Harness Terms helpful, particularly if this is all new to you.

Wire Harness IPC/WHMA-A-620 Standard 

All of the Wire Harness Terms below are from the IPC/WHMA-A-620 which is an industry standard that provides criteria for commonly used wire harness assemblies.  The standard sets a “collection of visual Quality Acceptability Requirements for Cable, Wire and Harness Assemblies.” To learn more about the IPC/WHMA-A-620, click here:  http://www.ipc.org/ContentPage.aspx?pageid=IPC-WHMA-A-620

Wire Harness Terms and Definitions

American Wire Gage (AWG) – A standard system for designating wire diameter. Primarily used in the U.S.

Bellmouth – The raised portion at the front and/or back of the wire barrel crimp that provides a gradual entrance and exit for the wire strands without causing damage.

Braid – Woven bare metallic or tinned copper wire used as shielding for wires and cables and as ground wire for batteries or heavy industrial equipment. Also, a woven fibrous protective outer covering over a conductor or cable.

Cable – A group of individually insulated conductors in twisted or parallel configuration under a common sheath.

Cable Assembly – A cable with plugs or connectors attached.

Coaxial Cable – A cable consisting of two cylindrical conductors with a common axis separated by a dielectric.

Conductor – An uninsulated wire or the conductor of an insulated wire suitable for carrying electrical current.

Conduit – A tube in which insulated wires and cables are passed.

Connector – A device used to physically and electrically join two or more conductors.

Contact – The conducting part of a connector that acts with another such part to complete or break a circuit.

Crimp – Final configuration of a terminal barrel formed by the compression of terminal barrel and wire.

Crimp Height – The measurement of the overall wire barrel height after crimping the terminal.

Dielectric – Any insulating medium that intervenes between two conductors.

Double Crimp – The process of two or more mechanical crimping operations on the same location in a single terminal.

Ferrule – A short tube. Used to make solderless connections to shielded or coaxial cable. Also, a terminal crimped onto stranded wire to allow insertion into terminal blocks.

Grommet – A rubber seal used on the cable side of multiple contact connector to seal the connector against moisture, dirt or air.

Wire Harness terms

        Wire Harness at Falconer Electronics

Harness – A group of wire and cables, usually made with breakouts, which are tied together or pulled into a rubber or plastic sheath. A harness provides interconnection of an electric circuit.

Insulation – A material that offers high electrical resistance making it suitable for covering components, terminals, and wires to prevent the possible future contact of adjacent conductors resulting in a short circuit.

Insulation Crimp – Area of a terminal, splice or contact formed around the insulation of the wire.

Lanyard – A device attached to certain connectors that permit uncoupling and separation of connector halves by a pull on a wire or cable.

RF Connector – Connector used for connecting or terminating coaxial cable.

Ribbon Cable – A flat cable of individually insulated conductors lying parallel and held together by means of adhesive film laminate.

Strain Relief – A technique or item which reduces the transmission of mechanical stresses to the conductor termination.

Stress Relief – A predetermined amount of slack to relieve tension in component or lead wires.

Terminal – A device designed to terminate a conductor that is to be affixed to a post, stud, chassis, another conductor, etc., to establish an electrical connection. Some types of terminals include ring, tongue, spade, flag, hook, blade, quick-connect, offset and flanged.

Tubing – A tube of extruded non-supported plastic or metallic material.

Wire – Slender rod or filament of drawn metal.

Wire Diameter – The overall conductor plus insulation thickness.

To learn more about Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly process, please click on the links below:

Also, if you are a circuit board junkie, check out our blog series on soldering printed circuit boards.

Lastly, let’s get social! Please connect on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest for more electronic info.

insulation

Twentieth Century Wire Insulation

Wire Insulation really took off in the twentieth century when changing technology became easier. Natural rubber compounds were typically used to insulate wires starting the twentieth century. In the 1930s, PVC insulation was developed. This was used more often starting in the 1940s.  PVC, Cresyl Phthalate, DEHP and other plastics replaced rubber as an insulator for wires and other parts starting in the 1950s.

Different Types of Twentieth Century Wires

Plastic or Nonmetallic Cable Insulated Electrical Wiring: Romex Cable Wiring

Insulation NMC or plastic-insulated wire or “Romex” has been in use in the U.S. since about 1926. Plastic NMC began replacing both rubber wire insulation and fabric-based wire insulation in the U.S. in the 1950’s. PVC here refers to plastics based on polyvinyl chloride. Plastic or thermoplastic nonmetallic cable still referred to by many electricians as “Romex” cable, has been in use since the 1960’s. In the U.S., Romex cable became widely used in new residential construction by 1970, completely replacing fabric-based wire insulation products. But in some large cities, electrical conduit was used rather than plastic NMC.

 

Knob & Tube Electrical Wiringinsulation

The earliest form of the electrical wiring system in buildings in the U.S. was knob and tube. Knob-and-tube wiring is supported with ceramic knobs and runs intermittently through ceramic tubes beneath framing and at locations where the wires intersect. This type of insulation diminished in North America by 1940 but continued to be installed as new work in some locations until about 1975. They become less common because of many problems including, the insulation that envelopes the wiring was a fire hazard. It tends to stretch and sag over time and they lack a grounding conductor. Grounding conductors reduce the chance of electrical fire and damage to sensitive equipment.

Fabric Covered NMC Electrical Wire Insulation

insulation           The exterior insulation on fabric-insulated NMC electrical wires is often black, silver, or white. The individual wires within the cable may be insulated in rubber or fabric-covered rubber. They may be insulated by plastic in later wiring products. The conductors are themselves covered by a variety of materials: fabric over rubber, rubber, and plastic.

 

Copper-Clad Aluminum Electrical Wiring

The photograph of copper-clad aluminum electrical wire shows the wiring insulationsheathing markings. This NMC or non-metallic-sheathed cable electrical wire was observed in a 1974 Edina MN townhouse and was connected to an FPE electrical panel. Unlike aluminum electrical wire used in branch circuits (a fire hazard), copper-clad aluminum wire performs about as well as copper wire and is considered safe for use in homes provided of course that the wiring has been correctly installed.

 

Aluminum Electrical Wiring Types

insulation         Typically, aluminum electrical branch circuit wiring was plastic-covered. Aluminum wiring has been studied since about 1945 and began appearing in homes in North American as early as 1965. In that year Kaiser Aluminum and Chemical Corporation began marketing KA-Flex solid-conductor aluminum wiring. Unless it has been properly repaired or replaced, aluminum wiring in homes or other buildings is a serious fire hazard.

 

 

Thank you for taking the time to read our blog post on wire insulation.

To learn more about Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly process, please click on the links below:

Also, check out our blog posts on soldering printed circuit boards.

Lastly, let’s get social! Please connect on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest for more electronic info.

Sources:

https://www.nachi.org/conductor-types.htm

 

Insulation

Nineteenth Century Wire Insulation

Insulation

            The history of wire insulation starts in the nineteenth century. Insulators are used in electrical equipment to support and separate electrical conductors. An insulating material used in bulk to wrap electrical cables or other equipment is called insulation. 

The first electrical systems to make use of insulators were telegraph lines. This took place in the 1840s where glass served the primary insulator at the time. Also, plant products worked to wrap cables or hold wires. In 1844, Samuel F.B. Morse sent the first telegraph message. Consequently, he used a flat wood board beneath apparatus as an insulator to hold wires. The wire directly attached to a wooden pole delivered very poor results, especially during damp weather.

In 1893, Westinghouse developed a transmission line for the famous Niagara Falls to the Buffalo transmission. This was made out of porcelain insulators rated at 11,000 volts which were used temporarily until insulator technology was developed that could handle 22,000 volts.

Common types of Insulation for the Nineteenth Century.

Glass:

            Glass act as a conductor when exposed to humidity. It attracts to its surface vapors of the atmosphere. TheyInsulation form there a thin film of water, by which the electricity passes through. The types of insulators used for glass are glass unprotected by iron, glass protected by an iron covering, pine wood baked and soaked with shellac then having a piece of glass inserted. Also glazed porous earthenware, or baked clay, glass upon wooden pins, protected by a wooden shield, white flint, bone-rubber surrounding an iron hook, and the bone-rubber protected by an iron covering.

            The biggest objection to the use of the unprotected glass insulator is its great liability to fracture. The first glass insulators used in large quantities had an unthreaded pinhole. These pieces of glass were positioned on a tapered wooden pin, vertically extending upwards from the pole’s cross arm. Natural contraction and expansion of the wires tied to these “threadless insulators” resulted in insulators unseating from their pins, requiring manual resetting. The manufacturers of the glass insulator find it extremely difficult to increase the strength of the material by increasing its thickness. Mainly due to the account of the difficulty experienced in suitable annealing it. As a result, a slight scratch often causes the thicker insulator to fracture and become useless.

Ceramic/Porcelain:

            Porcelain insulators produced from clay, quartz or alumina and feldspar, and finally covered with a smooth glaze to shed water. Insulators made from porcelain rich in alumina are used where high mechanical strength is a criterion. Demand for master potters dramatically increased to create porcelain products due to the new electrical revolution of the 1880s. Simply changing to existing porcelain products was only a temporary solution, because the needs for even higher voltages came about in the 1890s. Chemists and material engineers helped design higher performance porcelain insulators with special coatings and designs. William Cermak, who came from Kasejovice, Czech, built a reputation for glass and porcelain pottery.  He developed the now famous “petticoated” insulator design offering a succession of ridges. One of his pioneering designs handled over 10,000 volts for the first time in history.

Wax and Oil:

Insulation

            In the 1880s, Edison used Trinidad asphaltum with linseed oil, beeswax, and paraffin to insulate copper wires mounted inside of iron pipes. Mainly used for durable underground power lines and made famous at the Pearl Street Station in NYC. Insulating Oil (Transformer Oil) – This petroleum product served as an electrical insulator and thermal conductor. Especially since it conducts heat away from hot transformer coils. Some capacitors also use insulator oil.

 

 

Source:

http://www.edisontechcenter.org/

Wire Harness Manufacturing

Wire Insulation

Wires can be found…..seems like….everywhere. Any electrical product that demands a current flowing will typically require a wire (or cable). Even when you hear something is “wireless”, wires power the device sending a signal. Electricity traveling through wires bring each of us tremendous joy and pleasure (computers, the internet, music, social media, communication, vehicles, transportation, appliances, etc..). Actually, can you imagine surviving a single day without electricity? Well, in the early stages, electricity did not travel so safely through wires. Thankfully electricity travels safe and sound through wires protected with wire insulation. 

Wire Insulation

           Wire Insulation at Falconer Electronics

The explosive growth of electrical products over a century ago drastically increased the use of wires carrying electricity. Unfortunately, uncovered or exposed wires caused extremely dangerous situations. Exposed wires led to electrical shocks or fire. However, a brilliant move was made to protect and strengthen wires by adding a non-conductive cover. Applying Wire Insulation to protect wires greatly reduced potential hazards and threats. 

 Wire Insulation Evolution

Taking a look at wire insulation in the 19th century, here is a cool video on porcelain insulators that were used according to the Thomas Edison Tech Center:

Due to increasing demand, electrical products required an affordable and efficient solution to protect wires. Also with the early growth in popularity of wires, a wire harness assembly became necessary. It is much more efficient harnessing loose wires as opposed to allowing a free for all. Especially as electrical consumer goods and the auto industry exploded in the early 20th century.

Insulation serves as a non-conductor that separates and protects wires within a harness assembly. Especially since it is a nasty world out there with many detrimental elements that can cause harm to naked wires. To save the day, an insulated jacket protects each wire from detrimental elements keeping the wire cozy and safe. Insulation protects the wire from water and moisture as well as extreme heat or cold. 

Thankfully wire insulation today is much more efficient, effective and affordable.  For example, thermoplastic high heat-resistant nylon coated wire (THHN wire) is low cost, light weight, and an extremely popular wire insulation option.

To learn more about Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly process, please click on the links below:

To learn about LED Lighting – click on the following blog posts: LED 101, The History of LEDs, Environmental Benefits Using LED Lighting, Falconer Electronics Produces LED Lighting, and Lighting with LEDs vs. Incandescent

Lastly, let’s get social. Please check out our Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn and Pinterest for more electronic info.

 

Wire Harness Manufacturing

Wire Harness Manufacturing Since 1985

Wire Harness Manufacturing is our foundation and in our bloodlines since 1985. The Team at Falconer Electronics, Inc (FEI) takes tremendous pride manufacturing amazing products for our customers. As a Custom Wire Harness Manufacturer, assembling and delivering superior product is our mission. Actually, we are wire harness geeks so we call it our Crusade.

FEI Steps for Wire Harness Manufacturing Success:

  1. Safety First!
  2. Awesome Customers
  3. Quality
  4. Speed
  5. Team Work

Our wire harness assemblies can be found all over the country on a daily basis:

  • As you walk around Walmart or Lowe’s, you will walk past our wire harnesses found in commercial power strips and electrical fixture displays.
  • If you drove past a semi truck today (or if one went flying past you), our wires may have been waving to you.
  • Our wires can be found in a dentist office – (not during a root canal – we refuse to contribute to that type of pain).
  • Your heating unit.
  • If you rode on a train today, our wires may have been also riding along with you.
  •  Also our proprietary line of work lights and trouble lights

Try Our Custom Wire Harness Estimator

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Tips for Wire Harness Manufacturing 

With our “Wire Harness Wednesdays” blog posts, we share helpful information on what it takes to build a high-quality wire harness assembly. In previous posts, we recently discussed Crimping Wires, Crimping Tools, and Wire Harness Safety.

Most importantly we emphasize Quality and Accuracy. Especially since safety and customer satisfaction is an absolute top priority. As a result, our customers consistently provide near-perfect review scores.

Wire Harness Manufacturing

Wire Harness Manufacturing at Falconer Electronics

Tips for successful Wire Harness Manufacturing include:

  • It is important that the insulation fully enters and extends past the crimp tabs
  • Multiple wires inside the insulation must extend past the insulation crimp tabs
  • Crimp does not break the insulation
  • Crimp fully wraps around and supports insulation (also cannot expose an opening greater than 45 degrees)
  • Insulation not punctured to the point where tabs penetrate the conductor or wires
  • Crimp tabs contact with top of the insulation
  • Insulation flush with the crimped wire
  • Identify damaged insulation that reveals wires
  • Wire, connector, assembly process, as well as insulation, are all compatible

Next week look for our “Wire Harness Wednesday” blog post as we begin a series on Wire Insulation. The series includes the history and evolution since the 19th century up to today.

In addition, to learn about LED Lighting – click on the following blog posts: LED 101, The History of LEDs, Environmental Benefits Using LED Lighting, Falconer Electronics Produces LED Lighting, and  LEDs vs. Incandescent

Lastly, let’s connect on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Matchmaking Wires & Wire Terminals

Wires get lonely! They like to socialize and maintain good company just like the rest of us (most of the time anyway). Good-hearted wires need healthy companionship with wire terminals. For example, a nice looking wire terminal from a family of good character typically make a great match for our wires. Excellent work ethic is another necessary trait. 

After building wire harness assemblies for over 30+ years, the team at Falconer Electronics likes to claim themselves as expert matchmakers of wires and wire terminals. We match wire and terminals safely and accurately. Wires need a terminal that is strong, loyal, hard-working and dedicated. Another requirement: Wire terminals that give great hugs. Holding on super tight to their wire companions is mandatory! 

In other words, a terminal that is committed to a long-term relationship. Short-term flings or a one-night stand simply does not fly around here. We only match wires and terminals that fit as soulmates. Life partners that fight through thick and thin.

Just look at all of these happy love birds that were recently matched up:

Wire Terminals

Wire Terminals at Falconer Electronics

Types of Wire Terminals 

A terminal establishes an electrical connection by terminating a conductor or wire. When matching the right wire with the best terminal, there are several factors to consider: Wire gauge, screw or stud size, as well as the electric throughput. Therefore, it is critical that the wire and terminal can handle the measure of electricity. 

Various types of terminals include: Ring terminals –  Fork terminals – Hook terminals – Spade terminals – Insulated and Non-insulated

Insulation on a terminal provides extra protection against extreme hot or cold temperatures.  The insulation on the terminal also helps prevent dust particles or debris from creating havoc within the connection. Lastly, the insulation will serve as a protector against corrosion or moisture from having a negative impact on the connection.  

Wire Terminals

Looking for a seasoned matchmaker of wire and wire terminals? Please contact us at your earliest convenience. We Love playing cupid! 

Look each week for our “Wire Harness Wednesday” blog posts. Also, check out our blog series on LED lighting every Friday for the month of June. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn and Pinterest for more electronic info. 

Wiring Harness UL Traceability Program

The Wiring Harness UL Traceability Program allows manufacturers of finished goods to accept wiring harnesses manufactured off site or at a third party. Maintaining supply chain integrity while adhering to end user sourcing requirements is the key. UL offers a traceability program that determines components consistency due to UL requirements for compliance. This program helps to bring safer products to market since it follows UL standards. It also ensures the confidence that outsourced products are meeting safety standards and requirements.

Wiring Harness UL Traceability Program

Custom manufacturers are faced with many challenges. Being a part of the supply chain for an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) comes with a significant responsibility. Especially with electrical products. Manufacturers in the supply chain have a social responsibility to produce high quality and safe products. In turn, the Wiring Harness UL Traceability Program provides the OEM with confidence while mitigating the risks associated with the introduction of non-compliant cable into their products.

As a wire harness manufacturer for over 30 years, Falconer Electronics works closely with customers to ensure UL standards and requirements on electrical products and assemblies. Having obtained numerous UL listings for electronic products, the team at Falconer Electronics fully understands the rigorous process and necessary requirements. We also provide the necessary support and guidance that you need to successfully build your products.

UL Offers Three Traceability Programs

UL offers three options of traceability for wire and cable distributors and processors to ensure supply chain integrity:

  1. Certified Processed Wire and Respooled Wire
  2. Recognized Component Processed Wire and Respooled Wire
  3. Recognized Component Wiring Harnesses

UL requires minimal to no testing with obtaining certification and quick turnaround. Also UL clients have immediate use of standard labels.

For more information about the Wiring Harness UL Traceability Program, please click here:

http://industries.ul.com/blog/ul-traceability-programs-support-supply-chain-integrity-and-end-user-sourcing-requirements

To learn more about Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly process, please click on the links below:

Let’s get social. Please follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest for more electronic info.

Wire Harness Accuracy

Can you believe that today is already the last day of May? 2017 is flying by! Well, we hope you had a wonderful Memorial Day celebrating with friends and family. As we have been posting each week, May is National Electrical Safety Month. Today is “Wire Harness Wednesday”, so we would like to address wire harness accuracy as well as problem areas to look for when wires are not working properly. 

Having created literally millions of wire harness assemblies over our 30+ year history, the team at Falconer Electronics has a keen eye for identifying trouble areas. Assembling a wire harness needs to comply with the manufacturer’s requirements such as height, length, gauge and pull test. Also, each assembly must meet industry standards such as UL or ETL. It is critical that the mechanical integrity and electrical requirements are both met when crimping wires and creating a wire harness. 

There are various challenges faced with assembling cables and wires for customers. Some wire harness assemblies can be quite basic with one wire capped with two terminals. 

Other wire harnesses bring complications with multiple wires, terminals, connectors, housing and twist ties. 

Wire Harness Accuracy

                  

 Wire Harness Challenges 

Every customer project requires Wire Harness accuracy. If you are working with a wire harness that is not working properly, there are several issues that can be causing the problem. However, there can be no damage or contact deformation. 

Pinpointing the culprit causing the failure is the first step. Some failures reveal easily and immediate while others may take some time to figure out. For example, damaged wires beneath insulation can be difficult to detect. Stress on the wires may cause damage without actually breaking the insulation. Wires carry electricity and cannot withstand a pull beyond weight limitations. Wires pulled at an excessive weight will cause breaks in the wires without damaging the insulation. Even worse, damaged or broken wires underneath a circuit board can be an extremely frustrating find. 

May is Electrical Safety Month!  Check out our Facebook page for “Electrical Fail Fridays” and “What not to do” this past month. You can also find us on Twitter and Google+.  June blog posts will include LED lighting as well as continue our series on “Wire Harness Wednesdays”.

See you then & have a Great day!!

 

The History of Wire Harnesses

Wire Harnesses

Wire Harnesses are an assembly of cables or wires that distribute electrical signals in the most efficient way possible. Cables and Wire Harnesses are bound together by straps, cable ties, cable lacing, sleeves, electrical tape, conduit, a weave of extruded string, or a combination.

In the 1920s, wire harnesses became more prominent, especially in the automotive industry. Engineers found that binding the many wires and cables into a wire harness allowed the wires and cables to be better secured against the adverse effects of vibrations, abrasions, and moisture. The 1920s also saw a boom in electrical household goods. Washing machines, Irons, fridges, vacuum cleaners all designed using many small components and connected by complex individual wiring systems. Manufacturing these products for mass production was often a timely and a costly process and by introducing pre-assembled wire harnesses, manufacturers offered a timelier more cost effective build.

           Wire Harness Assembly

Engineers design Wire Harnesses according to specific electrical requirements. A diagram is then provided for the assembly. Wire harnesses continue to be manufactured by hand, due to the many different processes involved, such as:

  • Routing wires through sleeves
  • Taping with fabric tape, in particular on branch outs from wire strands
  • Crimping terminals onto wires, particularly for so-called multiple crimps (more than one wire into one terminal)
  • Inserting one sleeve into another
  • Fastening strands with tape, clamps or cable ties

Falconer Electronics has been making wire harnesses since 1985. They are a crucial part of any electrical component.  For more information check out our Website!

To learn more about Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly process, please click on the links below:

You can also find us on LinkedInTwitter and Google+.

Crimping Tools

With over 30 years of wire harness assembly experience, Falconer Electronics has accumulated an impressive arsenal of crimping tools. When crimping wires and cables for our customers, utilizing the proper tools allows our team to execute jobs with accuracy and efficiency. Also in a safe manner. 

Wire harness safety is crucial. Even though we are commemorating May being National Electrical Safety Month, we focus on safety 12 months a year (check out our post on participating in the SHARP program). Using proper tools for crimping, measuring, inspecting and cutting wires are all key ingredients to our long term sustainability.

Many projects require crimping wires by hand. When producing wire assemblies for prototypes and small volume runs, handheld crimping tools sure come in…..handy. It is extremely important to look over the entire assembly when selecting the proper tool. For example, a basic pliers-style crimp tool can fit various wires, connectors and terminals. Of course matching the right size tool is imperative when terminating wires.

Molex is a global leader in manufacturing of high quality electrical tools, components and equipment. Falconer Electronics has relied on Molex for many years as a trusted source and supplier of crimping tools. The team at Molex declares they solve challenges “through our collaborative process, we take a multi-dimensional approach that brings together engineers, product designers and manufacturing to ensure the design cycle is smooth and seamless.” Below is one of the “Bad Boys” from Molex that our team loves to use when tackling tough projects:

Crimping Tools

         Crimping Tools at Falconer Electronics  

Pneumatic Crimping Tool

Not interested in crimping wires by hand? No problem. Pneumatic crimping tools are extremely beneficial and efficient. A pneumatic tool allows you to work hands-free being powered by air. Also these tools are fast, accurate and can drastically increase production.

We recently welcomed a new addition to our team. The Pneumatic Crimping Press pictured below is a “Plug’n Play” Pneumatic Press. Looks fierce doesn’t it? It is ready and raring to CRIMP!! Perfect for wires requiring interchangeable crimping dies:

Crimping Machine at Falconer Electronics

     Crimping Machine at Falconer Electronics

 

To learn more about Ground Straps and the Wire Harness Assembly process, please click on the links below:

You can also find us on Twitter and Google+. Continue to check out our blogs throughout every week this month for more information on Wire Harness Manufacturing!

Wire Harness Quality Control  

Wire Harness Quality Control is paramount at Falconer Electronics. Testing cables and wire harness assemblies are performed daily with every order. Quality control strongly impacts the bottom line with the wire harness assembly process. Well guided wire harness quality control and a solid test system prevents unnecessary errors, stress and lost profits.

High accuracy during the assembly process is the key to maintaining low cost and reliability. Every step is taken to ensure accuracy at the time of assembling and producing the wires. Instituting a strict wire harness quality control system during production brings significant benefits for our customers.

 Deming Values for Continual Improvement

Dr. W. Edwards Deming created 14 points for management with a quest for continual improvement. Dr. Deming is credited with being the master of quality improvement particularly with his work in Japan during the 1950’s. The Deming Institute continues the incredible legacy of Dr. Deming. One of the core values at the Deming Institute states: “We are dedicated to the Deming philosophy and the belief that working together, with humility, we can make a difference in the quality of life for everyone.” This is a truly inspiring mission! 

According to Dr. Deming, implementing the 14 points is a philosophical way of conducting business with an unwavering quest for continual improvement. New tactics and behaviors become habits. Those habits eventually form into the core beliefs and culture of a company. 

Two particular interesting points from Dr. Deming that help drive our wire harness quality control: 

1. Create constancy of purpose toward improvement of product and service, with the aim to become competitive and to stay in business, and to provide jobs.

5. Improve constantly and forever the system of production and service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus constantly decrease costs.

Consequences when continual improvement and quality are NOT the top priority:

  • High defect rates
  • Underutilized equipment
  • Poor productivity
  • Poor inventory management
  • Safety concerns
  • Low morale with employees

The team at the Deming Institute has the privilege to continue advancing the great work of Dr. Deming.  With a tagline that states, “We believe in the power of Dr. Deming’s vision of a better world and strive, with joy, to carry on his work.” This is certainly an admirable and worthy cause! 

Outsourcing Wire Harness Assembly Services

There are many benefits to outsourcing Wire Harness Assembly Services for your company. Partnering with a custom manufacturer of cable and wire harnesses can significantly boost your bottom line while reducing a great deal of stress.

When considering if it makes sense (and cents) to keep wire harness assembly in-house, here are a few important questions to ask yourself:

  • Does your team have the knowledge, experience and expertise to tackle challenging projects?
  • Do you have the vendor relationships and necessary volume to capture discounted pricing?
  • Do you have enough volume to justify a full time staff to create your wire harness assemblies?
  • Is there a training system in place to properly execute projects? 
  • Do you have the staff and resources to satisfy tight deadlines? 
  • Do you have an internal quality control team in place to ensure high levels of quality?
Outsourcing Wire Harness Assembly Services

Wire Harness Assembly at Falconer Electronics

Benefits of Outsourcing Wire Harness Assembly Services:

  • Quality
  • Safety
  • JIT
  • Inventory Control
  • Reduced Labor costs
  • Avoid workers comp and health insurance expenses
  • Economies of scale
  • Reliability
  • Increased profitability

Outsourcing wire harness assembly services will allow you and your team to remain laser focused on what you do best – Designing and making incredible products!

Falconer Electronics customers include:

  • Fortune 500 companies seeking to reduce expenses and labor costs
  • Small manufacturers without the proper staff or resources
  • Mid-size manufacturers increasing profitability by Outsourcing Wire Harness Assembly Services

Recently a global leader in energy products and management reached out to Falconer Electronics inquiring on outsourcing wire harness assembly services. They expressed that this was a weak area for the company and they simply did not have the proper expertise, resources or staff to create a competitive edge in this area.

Falconer Electronics has worked relentlessly over the years to institute numerous competitive advantages:

  • Quality control team and measures in place
  • Low overhead
  • Financially sound 
  • Proper Tools & Resources
  • Over 30 years of experience
  • Skilled and dedicated staff
  • Vendor relationships
  • Product knowledge and expertise
  • Fast turnaround 
  • No minimums 

Our customers find tremendous value that we negotiate with vendors to find the lowest prices on products and materials. With our vast experience, we will offer ideas and suggestions to our clients with less expensive alternatives to keep your costs as low as possible without sacrificing quality. Customers view our services as an extension of their business.

Your profitability is our top concern in order to maintain a long-term and healthy business relationship. Many customers at Falconer Electronics have been partnered with our team for decades. Our commitment is to execute every contribution possible to help make your company GREAT!