How the heck could I say no? Daniels Manufacturing Company wanted me to try out its Safe-T-Cable tool. I had seen the tool demonstrated at trade shows and was looking forward to getting some hands-on time with the product.
The demo set arrived in my office. There was a pair of Safe-T-Cable pliers, some braided stainless pre-cut strands, ferrules (for crimping the end), and a test board rigged up ready for action. I carried the stash over to my publisher’s office (another A&P) so we could give it a try. We were anxious to try it out, so we went ahead and tried safetying two bolts without reading the instruction manual. The resulting safety wire job was not pretty – there was a lot of slack in the wire. It was time to pull out the instructions.
The instructions were straight-forward and easy to follow. After a minute of reading, we were ready to make our second attempt. Perfection! It was a nice safety wire job if I must say so myself.
How it works
Basically, the tool uses braided stainless-steel wire instead of traditional safety wire. The wire comes in pre-cut lengths with a ferrule swaged on one end. The other end is sintered to avoid un-raveling. The process is simple. You insert the wire through the fasteners to be fastened, insert a ferrule on the end, insert the wire end through the tool, and put some tension on the wire. You then squeeze the tool’s handle to crimp the end and cut the wire in one step. That’s it. No wire twisting or pigtails to worry about.
I decided to do my own unscientific test to see how much time could be saved using this tool. First, I used my trusty safety wire pliers and safety wire to safety four two-bolt sets and two three-bolt sets. (Note to self: safety wire skills are just a bit rusty). It took me 9 minutes and 55 seconds to safety all the bolts. I was curious how much time it would then take to remove the safety wire, so we re-started the stopwatch. Two minutes later, I was done. Total time to install and remove safety wire -- 11 minutes, 55 seconds.
Next, I used the DMC Safe-T-Cable tool to safety the same bolts. I was amazed how quick the process went. After four and a half minutes, I was done. The removal was a piece of cake – I just cut each wire in-between the bolts and removed the ends. Total time to remove the wire was only 15 seconds. So total time for installing and removing wire using Safe-T-Cable: 4 minutes, 45 seconds. Total time saved -- 7 minutes, 10 seconds!
So what about the price? Well, you can expect to spend at least $350 for the tool. The cable runs around $1.00 per piece installed. But considering the time savings and rework eliminated, it is a tool that should be looked at seriously by maintenance facilities. I must say it was very easy tool to learn how to use and produced consistent results. For more information, you can visit www.dmctools.com.
What do you think of this product? Have you used it or seen it in use? You can submit your feedback below.
Thanks for reading!