EZ RJ45 Connectors

February 27, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Network Products 

ez-rj45-plug-connectorHow would you like to make your job easier without sacrificing the quality of the final results? If you’re an IT tech who does a lot of cable terminations with RJ45 or RJ11/12 connectors, our EZ connectors will help you do just that. I learned to terminate Cat5e cable with these, and let me tell you, they’re incredibly easy to use. Unlike standard RJ45 connectors that require you to feed each wire into it’s own separate channel (which can be very tricky and time consuming), the EZ connectors have just a single slot into which you push all of the wires (which have been previously arranged into the proper lineup for a T568A or T568B wiring scheme).

Aside from how easy they make it to actually feed the wires in, EZ RJ45 connectors also greatly increase your chances of having accurate terminations, thanks to the fact that when the wires emerge through the front of the connector,you can double-check the order they’re in prior to crimping.

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Retractable Ethernet Cords

February 26, 2009 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Cables and Wires 

retractable-ethernet-open-sEven if you’ve already gone wireless, it never hurts to keep an Ethernet cord tucked away inside your laptop bag just in case you have to get connected somewhere where there’s Internet, but not Wi-Fi, available. Stop wrinkling your nose; thanks to today’s brilliant product, toting an Ethernet cord along on your travels isn’t nearly as much of a pain as it used to be. Gone are the days when you’d have a 15ft cable snaking through your notebook attache, threatening to swallow up your very computer. These days, savvy on-the-go laptop owners reach for auto-retractable Ethernet cords instead.

If you’re wondering what difference auto-retraction makes, the answer is this: it’s all in the case. The cords, of course, need something to retract into, and that something (the case) is only 2.5″ x 3″ x 0.5″. Sure beats a huge coil of loose cable, doesn’t it? The really beautiful thing is that you never need to use more cable than you need; the cord dispenses from both sides of the case, and stays put as soon as you stop pulling on it. Without any excess trailing around on the floor, you (and passers-by) have nothing to get tangled up in. When you’re finished, simply unplug, then tug both ends of the cord to activate the auto-retraction. Pretty cool, huh?

My favorite part of the retractable Ethernet cord is the space it saves — with such a compact design, there’s actually still room left in my bag for my laptop.

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Easy-to-Use Stainless Steel Braided Sleeving

February 25, 2009 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Braided Sleeving 

stainless-steel_smToday’s featured product, Stainless Steel Braided Sleeving, is very popular with the custom car and motorcycle crowd. When slipped over hoses and wiring in your engine bay, this shiny, non-corrosive sleeving not only protects components from high temps and abrasion, but also helps to hold hoses together in the event of a rupture. And you can’t forget about its great looks — this is the DIY solution for a high-end looking custom vehicle. As a matter of fact, it will save you a bundle compared to the purchase price of custom-overbraided hoses, and no one will be able to tell the difference.

As I mentioned before, the sleeving is non-corrosive, meaning that it won’t rust or discolor. It’s also easy to cut with shears, which means you don’t have to worry about having a hot knife or any other special cutter on hand, as you would with most other braided sleevings.

In addition to the automotive uses, stainless steel sleeving is an excellent for protecting cables outdoors, where gnawing animals can wreak havoc on them. Just like chewing on a piece of foil (only harder), stainless steel braid repels rodents with the unpleasant sensation it creates against their teeth. It works so well, in fact, that several government agencies actually use this sleeving to protect critical communications cabling in the wilderness.

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Miniport Power and Data Center

February 24, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Power and Data Distribution 

miniport-openIf you’ve had it with crawling under you desk to plug into power outlets and data ports, then you’ll probably end up asking today’s product, the Miniport, “Where have you been all my life?” You see, the Miniport is a power/data center that you can recess right into a desktop or conference room table. Each unit includes 2 power outlets as well as 2 open ports, which you customize by snapping in the data jacks of your choice. To keep everything looking clean and uniform, each Miniport includes a voice/data adapter kit, which is compatible with 10 different jack manufacturers.

But now for the fun part: how it works. The Miniport installs into right into your desk or conference table, so that you can just flip open the top when power or data access is needed, and close it back up (flush with the table or desk top!!!) when it’s not in use. The result is a sleek and unobtrusive solution for keeping connectivity right at you fingertips (literally). No more having to crawl around on the floor or weasel into tight spaces to plug your laptop in.

Aside from its convenience factor, the Miniport also looks very polished and professional, and is a great way to make an impression on the people you do business with. When guests to your conference room are able to set up a laptop with zero hassle, it makes you look even better. And speaking of looking good, I should mention that the Miniport is available in 6 different finishes to complement and enhance just about any workspace furniture and decor.

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In Command

February 23, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets 

3m-command-plastic-hookEver been limited in your decorating because you couldn’t put holes in your walls? I’ve known that frustration more than a few times, and that’s why I’m now such a die-hard fan of 3M’s line of Command™ clips and hooks. Command™ is 3M‘s proprietary silicone adhesive, which has become famous for locking onto walls and other smooth surfaces, then removing with no trace of damage or residue. The hooks are perfect for hanging up everyday household items like keys and potholders, and the smaller clips are great for routing wires and cables. But don’t stop there — use your imagination.

I, personally, have found that the Decorating Clips – typically suggested for use with Christmas lights — are also fantastic for decorating with ribbon and flower garlands. Not too long ago, I was trying to decorate a church for a wedding, but hit a few snags in my plan when I had to find a way to hang flowers and bows without putting tacks or nails into the churches’ wall or kneeling bench (hadn’t thought about that). So I improvised with the clips, and they worked perfectly. I was able to stick them onto any surface I needed to, and then wire the flowers and ribbon to them. Everything came out looking great, and when it was time to break down, the clips came off without a hitch, leaving smooth, undamaged surfaces in their wake.

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Bench Mount Hot Knife

February 20, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Tools and Cases 

bench-mount-hot-knifeEver heard the expression “like a hot knife through butter?” We keep a bench mount hot knife out in our warehouse for cutting by-the-foot products, and every time I see it in action, that saying is all I can think of. With a blade that heats up to 1200 degrees (Fahrenheit), this zips through rope and braided sleeving in no time.

The high heat not only makes for super-fast cutting (this hot knife can slice through a 1-inch-thick nylon rope in less than 10 seconds), but also seals cut ends to prevent fraying. This really comes in handy for anyone who regularly works with braided sleevings or synthetic lines that would fray if their ends weren’t melted together. We hear from customers who use our hot knife for everything from marine rigging and rock-climbing lines to equestrian rope halters and automotive customization.

But let’s not ignore the first two words in this product’s name: bench mount. The fact that this hot knife can be affixed to a table or workbench not only increases the convenience factor, but makes it much, much safer. When you’re working with a 1200-degree blade, you need all the stability you can get. Since the knife bolts down onto a surface, you don’t need to worry about it being knocked over or pushed off your work surface.

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J Channel

February 19, 2009 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Raceway, Duct and Conduit 

j-channel-desk_closeup-sToday’s feature presentation is very much like conduit or surface raceway, but even easier to use. Ladies and Gentlemen, allow me to introduce you to J Channel, the ever-updateable cable routing solution. It might not be the prettiest cord manager in the neighborhood, but you really can’t beat it for convenience – just peel the backing off its pre-applied adhesive, stick it onto your desk or wall, drop in some cables and go.

There are a couple of situations this works especially well in. First of all, if any of you renters out there are looking for a way to hide and route A/V or home computer cables, this is a terrific option that won’t leave nail holes in your walls (always a plus when deposit refund time rolls around). And secondly, J Channel is a great solution for 9-to-5 cubicle dwellers: we have a customer who actually ran some around the base of their cubicle walls so they could stash office cables inside and cut down on clutter and tripping hazards.

Don’t let me typecast the stuff, though – it’s really an all-around great solution. Because of it’s design (with an open slot right along the top) J Channel makes updating cabling incredible easy – instead of having to pry open a snapped-on cover all along its length like you’d have to do with raceway, you just lift out the cables you need to remove, then pop the new ones in. And aside from being economical, it’s also very customizable: just cut it to size with a basic hacksaw.

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Cable Turtle

February 18, 2009 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets 

cable-turtle-2-animated1This blog has been up and running for less than 2 weeks, but I’m still amazed that it’s taken me this long to get around to my absolute favorite, the Cable Turtle. Make no mistake: there’s nothing remotely reptilian about it. This sleekly cute cord organizer is easy to use, extremely versatile, and comes in a rainbow of colors — form and function in perfect combination. As a matter of fact, it’s functionality and aesthetic qualities actually landed it in the Museum of Modern (MoMA) Design Collection. Starting to feel interested?

To put it briefly, the Cable Turtle winds up and hides excess cord length you’d rather not deal with. Since it’s available in 3 sizes (mini, small, and large), it’s perfect for shortening everything from earbud cords to USB cables to lamp cords. It makes perfect sense almost anywhere, including home, office, school, car, purse, laptop bag… you get the picture.

Now let’s talk about how it works. First of all, you flip the flexible “shell” open (this is a Turtle, after all). Next, wrap extra cord length around the inner spool. And last, snap it closed again. Not to be terse with the instructions, but that’s really all there is to it!

Judging by how many of my co-workers own a Cable Turtle, this has to be one of the most universally-purchased items among CableOrganizer employees: sooner or later, everybody buys one. And why wouldn’t we?

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Flame Stopper

February 17, 2009 by · 12 Comments
Filed under: Fire Protection 

abesco-fp200The old “stop, drop, and roll” routine and basic fire extinguisher skills are very useful, but if you’re trying to prevent flame and smoke from spreading through wall penetrations, neither will do you much good. What you really need is an intumescent filler material like Abesco‘s FP200 Fire-Rated Foam. This firestop-in-a-can fills in the gaps where cables or pipes pass through walls, ceilings, and floors, to maintain a tight seal that inhibits fire spread between rooms.

So how does it work? As I mentioned before, Abesco FP200 is intumescent, which means that it expands and forms a hard, impenetrable char when exposed to fire. This char has the ability to seal out flame, smoke, toxic fumes and water for up to 2 hours of fire exposure. The foam can be used to seal gaps in concrete, brick, wood, and metals like aluminum and steel, and its performance isn’t affected by humidity or moisture. As a matter of fact (and I think this is pretty fascinating),  after application it actually cures (dries) upon being exposed to atmospheric humidity!

Abesco FP200 foam has been fire-rated according to the requirements of ASTM E-814 (UL 1479), contains no chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), and is environmentally friendly.

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Organize Wires with Wire Loom

February 16, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Wire Loom 

So, what does it look like underneath your desk? For longer than I care to admit, the floorspace below my desk was completely covered with knotted-up computer, peripheral, and telephone cords. In addition to those cables making my workspace look terrible, they also kept my feet in a constant state of near strangulation. Call me crazy, but you should never lose a shoe to your computer cords when trying to get up from your desk.

It didn’t take me long to catch my limit of the under-desk cable jungle, and I decided to take control with wire loom. Wire loom is a flexible tube-like product, which is usually slit along it’s length to make cable insertion quick and easy. The whole idea is to neatly gather cables together and cover them with wire loom, so that instead of a tangled mass you just have a sleek bundle.  Check out the difference between our before and after photos:

wire-loom-before1

wire-loom-after3

Wire loom isn’t only for computer-related cables — it’s also a great product for snazzing up custom car engine bays while  protecting wiring and hoses from engine fluids and abrasion.

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