Cable ties aka zip ties are universal fasteners used to bundle cables and wires. They are best the means to keep cables and wires secure and organized. But, all cable ties are not made equal. They come in differing sizes, strengths, and materials. Depending on their make, different varieties of cable ties are suited to different industries.
In this write-up, we will be discussing stainless steel cable ties, a variety of cable ties made up of stainless steel, one of the strongest materials in the world. The stainless steel cable ties are ideal for industries where specific environmental conditions need to be considered. These zip ties are corrosion resistant, have high-temperature resistance that ranges between --80°C and 538°C, and have high tensile strength, starting at 100 pounds.
How to use Stainless Steel Cable Ties?
Stainless steel cable ties are a great choice for supporting heavy weight but one needs to learn the art of using them appropriately. Though stainless steel cable ties are similar in design to their plastic and nylon counterparts, they cannot be used in the same way. It’s not practically feasible to use hands to tie up the stainless steel ties as is done with their plastic or nylon counterparts.
We have two options when it comes to fastening stainless steel cable ties to use them up to their optimum standard.
• Without Specialty Tools – As both sides of stainless steel cable ties are smooth, one needs at least a basic tool like a pair of pliers to pull the tail of the tie to tighten it. When needed, you can open the tie with the help of a flathead screwdriver or cut it with a cutter.
• With Specialty Tools – Though you can tie a stainless steel cable tie and open it using simple tools the process will be slow and uncomfortable. Specialty tools like stainless steel cable tie guns can make the process super-fast and efficient. The gun pulls and tightens the metal tie to a pre-determined level and cuts off the tail leaving no sharp edges.
When to use Stainless Steel Cable Ties?
Stainless steel cable ties have a high tensile strength i.e. they are strong and sturdy. In addition, they are also corrosion-resistant and heat-resistant. All these properties make them an excellent choice for extreme conditions where plastic or nylon cable ties are not good enough choice.
The stainless steel cable ties are used for both indoor and outdoor requirements where its properties of sturdiness are desirable. Though they can be used in household settings, they are mostly utilized in industrial settings where strength, weathering, corrosion, etc. are important environmental conditions. Some of the common industries frequently needing stainless steel cable ties to include –
• Offshore Industry
• Mining Industry
• Automotive Industry
• Telecommunication Industry
• Petrochemical Industry
Types of Stainless Steel Cable Ties?
Not all stainless steel cable ties are made the same. There are different kinds of stainless steel cable ties depending on different factors. For example, there are three varieties of stainless steel cable ties based on their structure and mechanism. The three kinds include – Roller Ball, Ladder, and Releasable. Rollerball, the most popular one, is equipped with an internal locking ball within the head of the zip tie.
Similarly, based on the material used, there are two varieties of stainless steel cable ties - AISI 304 and AISI 316L. Among these AISI 316L is better resistant to acids and thus is better equipped against corrosion. Another important categorization of stainless steel cable ties is based on their coating.
Coated vs. Uncoated Stainless Steel Cable Ties
Some stainless steel cable ties are coated with polyester and are called coated stainless steel cable ties. The coating provides an extra layer of protection to the cable tie. It protects the cable tie from environmental influences like extreme temperature etc.
In addition to this, the coating on cable ties also provides safety to the handlers and the cables or wires that are tied with these ties. An uncoated stainless steel cable tie can have sharp edges that can injure the handler and can also damage the tied wire.
When to use which type of Cable Tie?
A cable tie with a polyester coating becomes necessary when it needs to be used outdoors or in an environment with extreme conditions. As coated cable ties cost much more than uncoated ones, people may choose to use uncoated stainless steel cable ties when using coated ones is not a necessity. So, for indoor uses uncoated ties are sufficient.
Apart from these, an uncoated stainless steel cable tie can also not be used in situations where they will come in contact with galvanized steel. This is because the reaction between the two promotes faster corrosion. So, in all such situations where a cable tie has to come in contact with galvanized steel, coated stainless steel cable ties are the best choice.
Best Traits of Stainless Steel Cable Ties?
Stainless steel cable ties are the strongest and sturdiest of all available varieties of cable ties. The following features make them the best.
Stainless Steel Tie Wraps
As these are made up of stainless steel they are much stronger and more durable as compared to plastic ties. The heavy-duty stainless steel cable ties are readily used in extreme operating environments with extreme temperatures, humidity, dryness, weathering, and vibration found in heavy industries.
Withstand Severe Weather Conditions
Their stainless steel body makes them idle for both indoor and outdoor use; they can withstand extreme environmental conditions. They can endure high-temperature variations and do not degrade in quality even after long exposure to environmental hazards like UV rays, sunlight, or rain.
Added Security with Ball Lock Stainless Steel Cable Ties
The ball lock system of stainless steel cable ties is safe for handlers and cable jackets as well. The smooth edges ensure safety for both. Once fastened securely, stainless steel cable ties cannot be tampered with thus providing added security.
Stainless Steel Cable Ties Sizes
Depending on the manufacturer, stainless steel cable ties are available in various sizes. So, you can have a whole range of stainless steel cable tie size options. The average standard length, however, can be 200mm or 360mm and the standard width is 4.5mm and 7.9mm.
Difference between Stainless Steel & Nylon Cable Ties
As the name suggests, the difference between stainless steel and nylon cable ties lies in the material with which they are made. As stainless steel cable ties are made of stainless steel, they are much stronger and sturdier than nylon cable ties. They are more durable as they can withstand high-temperature variations and other damaging environmental factors.
Stainless steel cable ties are just like other wrap ties but with added features. If one needs a cable tie that can hold out against extreme weather conditions, UV rays, a wide range of temperature variations, strong chemicals, damage due to rust, and/or physical damage then stainless steel cable tie is the go-to choice.