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.
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
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:
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 wiressafely and accurately requires extensive experience and a specialized skill.
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.
Is it Time to Outsource 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”.
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.
Try Our Custom Wire Harness Estimator
Receive an Estimate Sent Directly to Your Email Within Seconds
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.
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:
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.
Due Diligence When Searching for a New Wire Harness Manufacturer
What can you determine from their online presence?
Check Out the Company Website:
First, explore the company website. Does the website represent the company as a partner that you can trust?
Does the company reveal itself having the staff, tools, resources, and ability to tackle your project?
Do they serve your industry?
Do they have the experience and expertise to take on your project?
Are company capabilities listed?
Check out their Social Media:
Is the company active on social media with communicating their culture?
Does it fit with yours?
Does the company provide helpful tips?
Communicate the company mission? Does the mission fit with yours?
When you contact them, do you receive a quick response?
Below includes a few additional questions to consider asking the Wire Harness Manufacturer:
Types of customers they serve?
What industry does the company target?
Do they understand your needs?
Do they have the flexibility to speed up during your busier times?
Can they adjust to varying seasonal demands?
Do you feel a chemistry and kindred spirit with this company?
Questions Regarding 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 products for you?
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.
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:
What industries do you serve?
Please describe your ideal customer?
What has been your greatest victory in your business career or at your company?
Biggest letdown or setback and how did you resolve?
Could you share exciting changes taking place in your business?
What are you absolutely best at?
What are your weaknesses?
How long have you been in business?
Who are your key employees?
Also, can you describe the experience of staff?
Do I have access to the floor supervisor?
Who is my main point of contact?
Do I have a contact on weekends?
Who do I contact for an emergency?
Are you properly insured? (Check with your insurance company to confirm requirements)
Can you supply 3 customer references?
Are you willing to sign a non-disclosure form?
What is your lead time for orders?
Therefore, are you able to tackle rush orders?
Should the customer supply parts or do you prefer to supply parts?
Do you have aggressive discount programs with vendors?
Furthermore, do you take advantage of early payment discounts with your vendors?
Also, what are your payment terms?
Do you accept credit card for payment?
Are discounts available for early payment?
What type of equipment and tools do you use?
What is your shipping policy?
Could we compare discounts with UPS/FedEx to see who has the best rates?
Who is responsible for damaged goods during shipping?
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.
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:
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.
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?”
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:
Ask for bank reference
……also, character references
…… as well as customer references
Do Some Research on Google and Social Media:
Google the owner to discover any past felonies, convictions or other bad news.
Additionally, you may want to check their Facebook page & see what they do in their personal time.
Also, check any other social media – Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Look for Videos on YouTube.
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.
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).
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:
Do you find the building and property presentable or unkempt? (Unmowed grass, disheveled parking lot, garbage, broken windows, etc…)
Additionally, is the office presentable or unkempt? (Top of the line everything or dated to the 1960’s)
Are you warmly greeted?
Additionally, are the management, staff, and employees pleasant and welcoming?
Also, do employees look happy and hustling?
Are tools and equipment organized and well maintained?
Furthermore, are the warehouse and inventory efficiently organized?
Is the shipping dock clear of clutter?
Also, are you impressed or underwhelmed with the team and operation?
Are there any red flags that make you uneasy?
Additionally, do employees have cell phones out?
Check the kitchen area – is it clean and organized or dirty?
In addition to the kitchen area, are the restrooms clean?
Are there any key employees that do not come out to meet you?
When evaluating the quantity and quality of staff, does the company seem to be top heavy?
What are the years of service of the management team?
Be prepared with tough questions regarding your product and process to determine if they are indeed experts in their field (see #6).
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?
On the other hand, if they meet with you for a long period are they too lackadaisical or not busy?
Furthermore, do they seem eager to earn your business or desperate?
Look for matching or mismatched priorities: expensive office furniture, overstaffed, excessive non-business essentials (foosball table, video games, keg parties, etc).
Get a gauge on morale at the company.
Does the owner wear an expensive wardrobe or jewelry?
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”.
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:
Several benefits fall in your favor by taking the initiative to order and supply your own parts when outsourcing:
You control the ordering process and supply chain.
Ordering your own parts allows you to also have full disclosure of pricing on the cost of goods.
First-hand knowledge of availability or stock-outs of your product.
Furthermore, you have better control over delivery times.
Negotiating your own discounts with the vendor.
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:
The time you spend ordering parts.
As well as the time you spend coordinating deliveries.
Lost opportunity of volume discounts available to the manufacturer due to their purchasing power.
Product knowledge and expertise that the manufacturer possesses.
Also, the variety of shipments arriving at the manufacturer on different days throws off their production schedule for your product.
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.
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?
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.
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:
Maintaining an Impeccable Customer Scorecard
Also, fast Turnaround Times
Short Lead Times
Agile and Flexible
Company Culture Dedicated to Customer Satisfaction
Lastly, a Deep Commitment to Safety
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.
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.
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.
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.
https://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/cable.jpg200257Nicole Hallhttps://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/fei-blue-300x88.pngNicole Hall2018-01-12 06:16:102018-08-15 15:53:25Cables and Wires: The Similarities Between Them
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.
Select your wire
Enter the number of wires
Select your terminals
Choose add-ons – such as sleeving, heat shrink, labels, or wire ties
Don’t see an item you need –
you can type in a request
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.
https://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Screen-Shot-2017-09-01-submit.png656542Nicole Hallhttps://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/fei-blue-300x88.pngNicole Hall2017-11-01 06:24:362018-08-15 15:53:56Do You Need a Wire Harness Estimate, Pronto?
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
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 Figure1.2. 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.
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
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.
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:
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
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
SELECT YOUR UNCUT WIRE (or wires):
You may select multiple wires – Click “Add to Estimate” after each selection
Available Colors – Black, White, Green, Red, Blue, Yellow, Brown
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:
Quick Connect/Disconnect Terminals
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 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
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
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.
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.
https://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Screen-Shot-2017-09-01-submit.png656542Nicole Hallhttps://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/fei-blue-300x88.pngNicole Hall2017-09-20 07:24:232018-08-15 15:54:11How to Use the FEI Wire Harness Estimator
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
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.
https://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/construction-machinery.png356847Nicole Hallhttps://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/fei-blue-300x88.pngNicole Hall2017-08-23 09:00:322018-08-15 15:54:30Everyday Objects That Require Wire Harnesses In Order To Function
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.
Low voltage building wire insulation and jacketing
Low and medium voltage equipment cable jacketing
Also, control cable jacketing
Indoor telecommunications cable
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.
Is lightweight, water-resistant, and chemically inert
Different types of polyethylene:
Linear low-density (LLDPE)
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.
Is a very flexible wire insulation. Also, it is usually extruded over softer insulation compounds.
Several Key Components:
Additionally, chemical resistance
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.
https://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/pictureeeee.jpg250250Nicole Hallhttps://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/fei-blue-300x88.pngNicole Hall2017-08-09 06:52:472018-10-17 13:51:03Wire Insulation Types used at Falconer Electronics Inc.
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
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
We are not able to say that our humble beginnings started in my garage in 1985. Truth be told….I had to launch Falconer Electronics, Inc (FEI) in my neighbor’s garage (main reason being he had a garage).
The beginning stages of producing product in a borrowed garage laid the foundation to always deliver incredible value. From working on the earliest LED heavy duty automotive lamps to producing multi outlet/audio video panels for major retail store fixtures, FEI takes great pride in producing high-quality electrical products and serving our customers needs.
Hard work, determination, a deep commitment to producing superior products and dedication to customer satisfaction have been the keys to the long-term success at FEI. Serving customers of any size is a true honor and privilege.
Falconer Electronics Team
The backbone of success at FEI was built by putting together an All-Star team. The incredible staff at Falconer Electronics conducts amazing accomplishments on a daily basis. A majority of our seasoned staff have been employed here for 10 to 20 years. Several employees have exceeded the 25 year mark (with a few others hitting that mark soon).
A HUGE THANK YOU TO THE OUTSTANDING FEI TEAM!!
Commercial Multi-Outlet Strips
Over a three decade span, FEI has acquired an impressive customer base. This list consists of numerous prominent businesses including several Fortune 500 companies such as AT&T, Best Buy, Walmart, Sony and Lowe’s. Our assemblies can also be found in use at the Pentagon. These are just a few of our current customers that have trusted Falconer Electronics, Inc with producing superior custom commercial power strips.
Falconer Electronics, Inc has tackled numerous projects with challenging demands. Projects have included powering every TV set on display at Walmart throughout all of North America, South America, Alaska, and Hawaii.
Producing high-quality wire harnesses is also a core competency and strength at Falconer Electronics as we enter our fourth decade. Testing and Quality Control of every product are an absolute top priority. Customers consistently rank our services at near perfect levels.
Printed Circuit Boards
FEI brings over 30 years of experience and in-depth knowledge of Printed Circuit Board Assembly. This ranges from subsystems to complete systems assemblies. FEI provides the expertise that a diverse client base needs. Once a PCB assembly or subsystems are completed, quality-control mandates strict oversight. Also, the staff at FEI provides diligent testing to your specifications ensuring a quality product. As a result, our customer ratings consistently rate at near perfect levels. Most of all, customers value that FEI takes great pride in doing the job right the first time and every time.
Our team of seasoned and expert staff, at Falconer Electronics, has been on a crusade to deliver the highest quality electrical products for over 30 years. With outstanding vendor relationships and manufacturing awesome products in the U.S. keeps our customers coming back. Many customers have partnered with us for decades.
Additional valuable components to the long-term success at Falconer Electronics include: Equipment – Tools – Resources – Supply Chain – Logistics – Financial Viability – Determination – Product Knowledge.
Falconer Electronics, Inc has years of experience with UL, ETL, and CSA – This is invaluable when obtaining a listing for electrical products and custom commercial power strips. Especially when customers need product turned around quickly.
FEI produces multi-outlet strips as well as power distribution to the following UL Standards:
UL 111 Multioutlet Assemblies
UL 183 Standard for Manufactured Wiring Systems
UL 1363 Standard for Relocatable Power Taps
UL 48 Standard for Electric Signs
UL 5 Standard for Surface Metal Raceways and Fittings
We test 100% to the applicable standard each and every item we produce ensuring the highest quality every time.
Falconer Electronics, Inc is powering into its fourth decade with producing the highest quality custom commercial power strips, custom wire harnesses, printed circuit boards and electro-mechanical assemblies. It will continue to be our privilege here at Falconer Electronics, Inc to serve our customers and community.
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.
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
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 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.
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 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”.
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!
https://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/wire-harness-3.jpg350550Nicole Hallhttps://falconerelectronics.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/fei-blue-300x88.pngNicole Hall2017-05-24 08:00:572018-10-17 13:58:50The History of Wire Harnesses