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Wire and Cable Blog



Top 3 Safety Tips for Welding Wire and Other Materials

Anyone familiar with welding knows that welding accidents aren’t pretty and should be avoided at all costs. As the practice of using heat and flux to fuse together two pieces of metal, welding is a dangerous activity, even for seasoned pros. MIG welding in particular is susceptible to accidental injuries and damage around the workplace. But how can you prevent accidents from happening? That is what we’ll be discussing in this article.

  • Protect Yourself

Welding produces sparks and high intensities of both light and heat. One of the first lessons that every welder learns is that they should wear a full face mask when using an arc welder in order to prevent the corneas of their eyes from getting damaged.

With MIG welding, however, there is an additional danger to the welder that needs to be addressed. MIG welding produces light that contains strong UV rays. These rays can burn and blister the skin unless the welder wears gloves and covers as much of their body as possible with clothing. This precaution also helps prevent burns from flying molten metals that are produced during welding wire together.

  • Protect Your Work Area

It’s important to fireproof an area as much as possible when MIG welding. Keeping the area free of plastic, paper, sawdust, and other highly flammable workshop materials is essential to the safety of all workers and welders that are using the space. Additionally, keeping a fire extinguisher nearby is always a smart move while welding.

  • Protect Others

When it comes to MIG welding, it’s important to focus on the safety of everyone involved. Welding wire gives off ozone and some alloys can even release fumes that lead to severe metal poisoning. Whether you’re working alone or with others, it’s essential to have a well-ventilated space in order to work.

Even though these tips might seem fairly obvious, it’s easy to overlook simple things because of impatience. Always make sure that someone who is familiar with the process is there and that the project is thoroughly planned out before welding in order to avoid common safety hazards.

 

Three Types of Electrical Wire: THHN, UFB, and Romex Wire Revealed

There are many types of electrical wire available for consumers, however, it’s easy to get confused by the different types. The most common types of electrical wire are THHN, Romex, and UFB wire. However, in order to understand which electrical wire will do the best job for a specific project, it’s best to know the capabilities of each kind of wire.

  • THHN Wire

THHN wire is covered with a PVC jacket and nylon coating. This wire is a bare one conductor copper wire and is often used indoors or in conduit. The most popular sizes for THHN wire are 12 and 4/0, though other sizes are available for nonstandard projects. The PVC jacket is one of the cheapest forms of insulation for this type of wire and the nylon coating provides waterproofing and slight lubrication for placing in a conduit. Because of the ‘bare essential’ nature of this wire however, it isn’t recommended for outside use.

  • Romex Wire

Romex wire is made out of two or three THHN wires combined with a grounding bare copper wire. Like the THHN wires, Romex wire can’t be used outside because of its minimal PVC jacket protection. However, these wires come in larger sizes than the thinner THHN wires; 14/2 and 6/3 are used widely as electrical wire, despite the fact that it can’t be used in conduit at all. The primary use for this type of wire is to run more than one conductor at a time through a separate grounding wire.

  • UFB Wire

UFB wire is one of the most popular and versatile brands of wire available, though it’s also the most expensive. It can be used in conduit, outdoors, underground, you name it. Because it deals with tougher terrains than THHN or Romex, UFB wire comes in larger sizes, most commonly 6/3 and 8/3 and is often called ‘underground cable’.

The more jobs that an electrical wire does, the more expensive it is. It’s important to know what the different electrical wires do before committing. Frequently, that added expense can save a lot of costly replacements and time-consuming repairs.

 

Power Cable Accessories: 3 Things to Know Before You Buy

Power cable accessories are important tools that help to distribute power among devices in a safe and effective manner. However, because of the wide variety of these accessories, it can often be confusing to know which one is the one you need. When purchasing accessories, consider these three things, quality, location, and specifications.

 

  • Quality- Getting The Right Accessory

Each company that develops power cable accessories have their own strengths and weaknesses. This means that, despite having two similar products, one brand might be more suitable than another for a certain project. An easy way to determine what type of accessory you need is to find out which accessories are meant to be used in certain environments and what the different amounts of electrical current they carry. From there, a sales associate can assist you in fine-tuning your search more effectively and let you know which brand is the best for your needs.

  • Location- Where Will It Be Used?

So many people overlook location when they’re deciding on what type of power accessory to get. This is a major mistake! Location is one of the most important questions to ask yourself about before you purchase because everything else depends on it. For example, outdoor use cables will be more flexible and made from hardy materials that can withstand wear and tear from outside environs and situations.

  • Specifications- Wattage Rating And Other Concerns

All electrical cables and cords have small metal wires that are meant to conduct electrical currents. The thickness of the wire will let you know how much current, or wattage, a certain wire can carry. The wattage rating is the amount of wattage that a wire can safely handle. It’s recommended that you know this important number before you use power accessories, particularly if you’re powering multiple devices from one source.

Most of the information that you’ll need can be found on the labels and product specs of a particular accessory. However, if you’re uncertain or don’t understand, it’s always a good idea to ask for help from someone who is knowledgeable about the various products.

 

Insulation Matters: The Differences between 4 Common Hook Up Wires

PVC hook up wire requires different levels of insulation in order to fully protect itself from corrosion. Corrosion can occur from a number of outside elements, from the environment that the wire is in to temperatures and accidents. In this article, four different types of wires and insulation will be discussed namely, UL1007, UL1061, UL1015, PTFE Teflon wire.

  • UL1007 Wire

UL1007 is meant to be used for projects that require 300 volts. It has .016” insulation thickness and has been certified by Underwriters Laboratories, or UL, for temperature and voltage reliability. However, despite being certified by UL, the high voltage of this form of wire usually requires third party approval for use by commercial properties.

  • UL1061 Wire

The UL1061 is very similar to the UL1007 because it has the same amount of voltage at 300 volts. However, the primary difference between these two is that the UL1061 has .009” insulation thickness. Its slimness makes this hook up wire ideal for work that requires the same kind of punch as the UL1007 while needing a smaller outer diameter.

  • UL1015 Wire

UL1015 wire has double the amount of voltage as the UL1007 and 1061. Thanks to its 600 volts, it also requires a lot more insulation to keep it protected. Because of this, UL1015 requires .032” of insulation, almost triple that of the UL1061! Like many types of wire, UL1015 can handle temperatures up to 105 degrees Celsius.

  • PTFE Teflon Wire

PTFE Teflon wire is high-grade wire that can withstand temperatures of 200 degrees Celsius- almost double of what the UL wires can. Because of the high temperatures that this wire is often submitted to, PTFE uses silver plated copper strands instead of tinned copper. Also, PTFE has a nonstick surface which protects the wires from water, oil, solvents, and even gasses.

There are many different kinds of wire available and each one has its own specifications, insulation, and capabilities. Having the right information is crucial and so it’s always recommended to talk to a sales associate who is knowledgeable about the different kinds of wires before buying.