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HomeTips & GuidesCable drawings: Why they are so important for cable assemblies

Cable drawings: Why they are so important for cable assemblies

About Cable drawings, Cable assemblies are an integral component for making connections to transfer power and signals. Thus, the designing process of cable assemblies starts with understanding its connectivity options via schematics.

Visualizing the cable, components, routing, connections and data flows helps engineers create an efficient cabling system.

This article discusses the importance of cable drawings or graphics, which lay the foundation for creating different cabling solutions. 

Why are cable drawings important?

When several electrical wires assemble together in a single unit, it forms a cable. You can use a cable for transmitting signals, power and data. The different wires arranged into a single unit makes installation, repair, and replacement easier. 

All these cables then again combine together in a single unit inside a sleeve. Protecting a cable from dust, dirt, and moisture, the sleeve on the cable makes it highly durable.

Though there are many cables in a sleeve, individual cables may have different functions. For instance, some cables might carry data signals while others carry electricity. 

Now, as you know, every wire has a unique function; any mistake in the wiring can lead to disastrous incidents. Thus, it is essential that designers have cable drawings while they work on cable connections. 

A cable drawing clearly shows a cable assembly. By referring to the end-to-end details of cable connections, designers can create a safe and functional cable. Apart from the connection details, you can get an idea about cable dimensions, heat shrink tube locations and internal solder connections. 

The cable drawings also comprise a Bill of Materials and assembly instructions to help customers with installations, replacements and repairs. 

Micro USB Cable, USB Cable Vector Art Illustration

Micro USB Cable, USB Cable Vector Art Illustration

What are the benefits of cable drawing in cable assembly applications?

Electronic circuits are everywhere, whether in the aerospace, automotive, missile or marine industries. All these circuits need different cables assembled in a single system. Some cables may transmit energy, while others can communicate data signals. 

Electrical connections to the PCB

For electrical connection on PCB boards and devices, cable designers may use multi-conductor cables, co-axial cables, RF cables and flat ribbon cables.

Further, cable harnesses are required for connecting one PCB to other boards or sockets. A  PCB connection cable drawing helps a designer understand the interfacing between cables and PCB routing connections.

These drawings explain cable connections to the boards or connector pinouts. As a result, designers save a lot of time while setting PCB electrical connections. 

Wiring buildings

Cable drawings help engineers control electrical planning and design in wiring buildings. They can know the locations of electrical outlets, sockets, and fixtures while completing electrification work. Further, cable drawings help engineers adhere to building codes and prevent code violations, thus saving money and time. 

Electronic device connections

When you wire a complicated circuit or connect any electronic device, cable drawings help you get the connections right. You can estimate the wire lengths, its related components, part numbers and the wire locations on the board with a detailed cable drawing. 

Seamless pattern of various cables, plugs, chargers and adapters for electricity, internet and computers

Seamless pattern of various cables, plugs, chargers and adapters for electricity, internet and computers

Best practices for Custom cable assembly drawings

Cable drawings provide critical information regarding electrical connections in any application system. Thus, it is essential to follow best practices when creating a cable drawing.

Mention a clear title and revision of history.

An engineer or designer identifies the project or the assembly through the title only. Additionally, always include a table for revision history, which helps to track any changes and update drawings over time if required. This table mentions the revision date, the person who made the changes and modification details. Such a revision history table ensures that whoever uses the cable drawing has the latest information regarding it and does not miss any changes. 

Always use standard symbols and conventions:

When you adhere to standard industry symbols, anyone familiar with cable assemblies can understand the drawing. The most common symbols are for terminations, cables, splices and connectors. Further, it is advisable to use the same colors and lines for specific components so that they become easy to identify and comprehend. 

Mention cable specifications in detail.

Comprehensive specifications about cables and their components are important for a high-performing and error-free cable assembly. These details include length, size, cable type and insulation material. 

When choosing the right cable, you must specify impedance, current ratings, voltage and temperature limits. Cables with detailed specifications are safe during procurement and assembly. 

Provide accurate dimensional information.

When clear and correct dimensional details related to cable lengths and bend radii are provided, the chances of failures and conflicts during installation are greatly reduced. Proper labeling and scaling help you precisely identify and install the correct cable assemblies. 

Be consistent in cable path and routing designs.

A cable assembly drawing must clearly illustrate the paths and routing of cables. Clearly mention the cable route, mark entry/exit points, connector transition points and any required fasteners and supports. To make the drawing clearer, use solid lines for cable paths and dashed lines for cable routes. 

Proper labeling and Part Numbers

These labels and numbers should be consistently used in a cable drawing, which helps in the easy identification of cables and components during assembly, troubleshooting and maintenance. 

Cable Termination and Connector details

Information regarding connectors and cable terminations is vital for a cable assembly. The cable drawings should include torque values, pin configurations and crimping specifications. With clear termination instructions, you can make minimal mistakes and ensure connection integrity. 

Consider cable management

Properly managed cables in an electronic system ensure reliability and easy maintenance. Features like tie wraps, clips and cable trays in the cable drawings help you make an organized and secure cable assembly. 

Always include safety information.

Always mention cautions and warnings. Components compliance with relevant regulations and standards must also be mentioned. If there is any potential hazard with the cable use and installations, you must mention it. 

Present cable drawings in digital formats:

A cable drawing available in digital format can be easily accessed and edited. Try creating drawings using CAD software and saving them in common formats, such as PDF or DWG. 

Conclusion

So, now you know how much impact cable drawing has on cable assembly manufacturing. The above tips will help you get a safe, reliable and functional cable assembly. If you need any help regarding wiring harnesses and cable assemblies, Cloom is the one-stop solution for you. We are a leading manufacturer of different types of cable assemblies used in various industries. 

I am Lillian Yang, having been a sales manager for over 10 years.

I have received many positive reviews from customers. They have praised our excellent service, on-time delivery, and high-quality cable assemblies.

For your projects, please provide cable assembly files/images/smples, etc., so that I can send you a quotation within 24 hours.

Contact me now and let’s get started on building your wire harnesses!

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