Cable Management, An Overview
From morning to night, at every stage of their day and during work or downtime, people are 'connected', needing constant access to devices while maneuvering the terrain of technology. From servers, office computers, a hotel lobby or your kids bedroom, there are bound to be extensions and power boxes, exposed cable and components quietly overheating. Making sure equipment is housed and treated accordingly becomes easier though, with an abundance of products (and rampant DIY ideas online) now available. Knowing your needs will depend on setting and environment, but here are some basic items that cover a large spectrum of uses.
I will begin with cable ties, blighters that some of us see daily, nearly everywhere we go. Basic control begins with these, tethering cords together by looping around, tip feeding through ratchet head. On standard ties, a grooved underside works with the head to give a tension controlled bind, and unless you get releasable ones, they must be cut for removal. Not stopping with cables though, ties are used for many purposes, from industrial and construction to artistic. Ties can be crafted in a large array of material, from nylon to stainless steel, so heavy and light applications alike benefit from the quick, solid bind. Though for some items, bundling is not the sole concern. Ties do not cover cords and exposure may be your issue, so you have further to look. Wire loom will do both, control cables by wrangling them plus protecting them with full coverage. Also called convoluted tubing, a slit runs down the length, through which wires are slid. Wire Loom gives access to cables for maintenance, as well as defending cords at risk of impact or chewing pets. Moving along, an item frequently used is braided sleeving, woven protection which provides full coverage at a more heavy-duty level than wire loom and slips directly over top of cables. Depending on the type of sleeving, you can brace your cables for exposure to abrasion, chemicals, flames & extreme temperatures which prolongs their life, while ensuring both time & money are not wasted fixing breakdowns. Likewise, external objects are protected from sharp contents, and this sleeving is often used in plant & factory settings, along with automotive industries.
Now, cable management considers not only wires but components as well. In an office or IT setting, servers may cause your organizational strife, and along with ensuring that switches and patch panels rest in enclosures with circulation (such as cabinets or racks, tidying patch cords is a mean feat. Neat Patch is an item designed to simplify this fray, fitting in standard enclosures to tidy and conceal cords. With 500 cubic inches of space, wires route behind a sleek front while excess coils within, preventing mess while letting you easily trace circuits. As another facet of organization, the issue with wiring may be that it's simply in your way. Cord covers are dynamic and simple, letting you hide phone lines or drive over cables with an 18 wheeler. There are surface raceways, wall mounted covers, and pieces ranging from discreet and disguised to very large. Safcord is unique because it uses hook material to bind to looped carpet, meaning covers won't slide on plushy flooring. You can select something like Smoothmould for a home or office, which routes along perimeters and corners, or medium to heavy-duty multichannel drop over covers, which bear foot or vehicle traffic in varied settings. Raceways may be mounted to desk areas or other surfaces, providing a lip which stores wires while leaving them assessable.
The first step is to begin organizing, and depending on setting and requirements, you can create your own management methods or invest in what you need. Just don't let sleeping wires lie!