Are there machines that completely create ethernet cables?
April 29, 2010 9:16 PM   Subscribe

Are there machines that completely create ethernet cables?

This includes attaching the ends.
posted by nygma2001 to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
 
How to make a cable

Termination can be done with a hand crimper or crimp machine containing 8P 8C die set.
posted by MechEng at 9:37 PM on April 29, 2010


I was wondering, more along the lines of a machine (industrial-sized) that could do the terminations all on its own. I can't imagine all the cables of the world are still being created by hand.
posted by nygma2001 at 10:16 PM on April 29, 2010


nygma2001: "I was wondering, more along the lines of a machine (industrial-sized) that could do the terminations all on its own. I can't imagine all the cables of the world are still being created by hand."

Excellent question! It's especially applicable when you're making a cable for a gigabit link of any real length. Not only is it tough to remember the color sequences, but it's even harder to arrange the tiny wires in that exact order.

Makes me nostalgic for the 10Mbps days when we could use flat cable for short distances.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 10:41 PM on April 29, 2010


Yes, there are machine made cables. Every cable you buy these days was made by a machine, not a person.

But I guess your question is do the patch cables get created from the raw copper to the final product by one machine? The answer to that is no. The ethernet cable itself is usually made by one machine at the company (or even by another company) and then the patch cable maker takes that cable, chops it to appropriate lengths, puts ends on it and seals the ends, then the patch cable goes off to the testing machine to test continuity and from there is packaged by a packaging machine or person.
posted by barc0001 at 10:50 PM on April 29, 2010


I should add to make the 10gigE spec work, you can't use handmade cables as the tolerances are too fine.
posted by barc0001 at 10:51 PM on April 29, 2010


From watching "How It's Made", I've learned there is a custom machine to make everything you buy. They don't have an episode on network cables specifically, but they do have ones on wires and cables.
posted by smackfu at 6:11 AM on April 30, 2010


Are you wanting to make a lot of custom length cables without doing the terminations by hand?

I just discovered the Platinum EZRJ45. Holy mackerel. Sooooooo much better than trimming the conductors off and sticking them into the connector, hoping that one of them doesn't cross inadvertently! It's not quite industrial-level-stick-the-cable-in-and-magically-a-connector appears, but its way better than the old method.
posted by Xoebe at 1:46 PM on April 30, 2010


Xoebe, interesting find. I can see for certain things that would be good, like making custom GigE patch cables that are close to optimal spec easier. Things that worry me about custom tools like that though are you'll need to buy the crimp ends from them as well, whereas all of my crimpers I can get ends for them anywhere from Home Depot or Crap Shack (if I want to pay through the nose for them that is, but sometimes availability is its own virtue) to all of the electronics wholesalers in town. Plus, when you get right down to it, this system isn't really saving me any time or effort. I've gotten pretty good at doing them the old way, so maybe for those without the need to make many of their own cables, or those who haven't had much practice would find this more useful than I.
posted by barc0001 at 11:04 PM on April 30, 2010


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