Cable Tying with Waxed Twine

Martin Hannigan hannigan at world.std.com
Thu Jan 25 06:39:55 UTC 2007



>Upon leaving a router at telx and asking one of their techs to plug 
>in the equipment for me, I came back to find all my cat5 cables neatly 
>tied with some sort of waxed twine, using an interesting looping knot 
>pattern that repeated every six inches or so using a single piece of 
>string. For some reason, I found this trick really cool.

It's called 'wax lacing' and it was originally a CO standard.

It was adapted to collocation, FWIW, first by MCI, IIRC, then
Level(3). Level(3) mastered the art of building converged central office
and colo (T Colo + Colo) by taking Bellcore standards and CO experience 
and creating hybrid standards of design and installation. Internap used this 
standard as well. 

The beauty of using this technique is service delivery and aesthetics.
You don't just do and un-do wax lacing. It's meant to be permanent
so in order to use it extensively, you need to have a superior cross
connect system and plant engineering in place and a detailed service 
delivery methodology. This doesn't work in most places because they
don't have or do enough detail planning.

The knot you are seeing is likely "chicago knot". It should be 
easily undone by tugging on one of the two short ends. Wax is also
used in conjunction with "fish paper", green wax paper that is used
as a coating between metal and cable so that wear is offset from
vibrations et. al.

There are multiple reasons to use wax over zip ties. Some are
safety related, some are service delivery related, and some are wear
related.

It is definately not cheap. It also a highly technical
undertaking to do correctly.. You have to make all your decisions on
cabling up front i.e. split at center, left to right, split at rack,
mid to upper, mid to lower, etc. 

http://www.dairiki.org/hammond/cable-lacing-howto/

and digg it:

http://www.digg.com/mods/The_lost_art_of_cable-lacing...

(I'm well under 50. See digg article :) )


-M<





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