Testing times for Venhill cables

From go-karts to superbikes, stairlifts to lawnmowers, Venhill cables end up in a range of applications and have to execute thousands of movements - often under tremendous tension - accurately, consistently and absolutely without failure. Being engineers we like certainty, so we routinely test components to ensure they meet our high standards.

We use only the highest quality marine-grade stainless steel inner wire for our cabling, and to ensure absolute consistency, our team batch tests it for tensile strength. We choose to batch test individual components and not finished cables as the testing process puts each component under huge stress, which could affect the durability of the finished product.

Sections of inner wire from each batch delivered to our warehouse are selected at random, for testing. No batch is allowed into the production area of our factory until it is tested and verified.  

How do we test cables and what are we looking for?

Put simply, both wire rope and wire strand have tiny gaps inbetween the strands, which gives space for the wire to bend and flex. When tensioned, these gaps are filled by the strands moving to a more natural position

As the diameter shrinks slightly, the overall length grows by a small amount and will return to its original length and diameter, providing the load is below the elastic limit of the wire

Overloading or prolonged use can cause fatigue ('cyclic loading failures') which will not only cause long-term changes that reduce flexibility, but can also cause the cable to wear more quickly.

To ensure that the components we use are of consistently high quality, each sample of inner wire we test is loaded to 200kg or more, which is a far greater load than it will ever encounter in normal use. This way we can evaluate its elastic properties and measure breaking load. If the test sample meets our tight tolerances, then and only then is the batch cleared for use in our cabling.  

The quality control doesn’t stop there either, every Venhill cable is made in our UK factory to the same high standard - we never ‘ship-out’ manufacturing. 

We surround the high quality marine-grade stainless steel inner wire with a PTFE ‘teflon’ liner for minimum friction, and ‘bird-cage’ each one too - a special process applied to the end of the inner cable wire, which allows solder to penetrate the weave of the cable making the bond with the nipple much stronger. 

All this means when you choose a Venhill Featherlight cable to go on your go-kart, superbike, stairlift or lawnmower, you can have absolute confidence it will perform accurately, consistently and absolutely without failure.

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