Filed under: Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets, Desk Cable Organizers, Power and Data Distribution
These days, it’s pretty common to see grommets built into peoples’ desktops, so that they can run phone and computer cables through their work surfaces instead of across them. But what about conference tables? It’s 2010, and just about every conference room out there is wired to the hilt, so that their occupants can run everything from laptops and projectors to phone lines and A/V equipment. All of the cables associated with those electronics can make for a major mess come presentation time, so that begs the question: why don’t conference tables get grommets, too?
As it turns out, they do, and you’ll be happy to know that they’re not the standard-issue round plastic ones that you usually see in desks. You have to step it up a notch for a conference room, right? You bring visitors in there! But I digress. I’ll just tell you about the MHO® conference table grommet.
Conference tables are bigger than desks, so it just goes to reason that grommets made for them should be a little more substantial, right? The MHO® grommet is rectangular in shape, and distinctly bigger in size, measuring approximately 8″x4″. It’s also refreshingly free of flat black plastic, instead made out of very sleek and modern-looking anodized aluminum. The MHO® further differs from your run-of-the-mill grommet in that it doesn’t spend all it’s time as a gaping hole in your tabletop – it actually has a flip-open lid that closes flush with your table when not in use, so you have the benefit of a solid, flat, continuous workspace.
But the really great thing about the MHO® grommet is that it matches the extremely popular MHO® desktop power and data center. If you’ve already installed an MHO® power/data unit, you can still opt for a grommet, too, without worrying about what your conference table will look like with an unharmonious mix of extras installed – everything will look clean and uniform.
Filed under: Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets, Desk Cable Organizers
Thanks to an article I just finished writing, I’ve been pretty zoned in on desk grommets lately, and I have to say that for something with so simple a purpose (protecting computer cables and phone wires as they pass through the routing hole in your desktop), there are a ton of choices out there. I’m serious – you’d really be surprised. Now, I don’t know what you look for in a grommet, but as for my favorite, I’d have to say that, for the moment at least, I’m most partial to the Office Storage variety.
This decisive personal grommet ranking came about only this morning, after I arrived at the office and promptly unloaded my cell phone, its charger, breakfast, a bottle of water, my computer glasses and spare change for a possible afternoon pick-me-up soda onto the piles of trade publications, mail, and scribbled notes that I left behind on my desk during last evening’s hasty departure. Sigh. Add to that the fact that I’ve already rolled my desk chair (with me in it) over my poor charger cord twice this morning, and you’ll probably understand why right now, I wouldn’t exactly mind having an organizational desk grommet at my service.
I’m not so optimistic to actually believe that any Office Storage Grommet could make the all-consuming paper pile holding court on my desk disappear, but it would help out with the sticky page flags, post-it pads and scads of felt-tip pens that litter my desk from 9 to 5. And my cell phone charger cord probably wouldn’t be feeling quite so bruised at the moment if I had been able to route it directly through my work surface instead of letting it languish dangerously close to my office chair wheels as it took the long way from the under-desk PDU to my desktop.
Alas, my desk is made of glass that’s free from ready-made grommet holes, so I’ll have to wait on this one. But rest assured that if I could install an office storage grommet, I would – in a heartbeat. Until the day comes when I’m in a situation where I can use one myself, I’ll just have to live vicariously through the happy reviews that I continue to read from people who think this is the best five-spot they’ve ever spent.
This product has been discontinued.
Filed under: Braided Sleeving, Cable and Wire Storage, Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets, Cable Wraps, Cables and Wires, Electrical, Power and Data Distribution
No matter who you are, where you live, or how big or small your circle of family and friends is, chances are very good that you know someone whose life has been changed because of breast cancer. Maybe you’ve lost a loved one to it. Maybe you’ve watched someone close to you battle though it and emerge a survivor. Maybe you’re living with it yourself. But one thing’s for sure – once you have a brush with the disease, you never forget it.
Since yesterday, October 1st, you’ve probably begun seeing a lot pink ribbons and references to Breast Cancer online and in the media. That’s because October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and this year, 2009, CableOrganizer.com has decided to jump in and do something to support this admirable, and universal, cause.
And so, today, I’m not going to focus on one cool product, but 9 very worthwhile ones that are not only fun and useful, but whose purchase goes toward supporting breast cancer research, as well as meeting the needs of women who are fighting the disease. If you or someone you know is a fan of the color pink, please visit our Breast Cancer Pink Page, which is full of rosy-hued products that have been chosen to help raise funds in honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. From now through October 31, 2009, we’re donating $1 from each purchase of these products to The Donna Foundation, a Florida-based non-profit organization dedicated to furthering breast cancer research and providing assistance to breast cancer patients.
So if you’re already looking into accessorizing your iPod or organizing some cables around the house, please be sure to check out the items on our Pink Page first – by purchasing one of these products, you’ll not only be getting something you need, but will also be helping to prevent and cure breast cancer in the process.
Filed under: Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets, Server Racks and Enclosures
Quick – as fast as you can, name as many classic “pairs” as you can think of! Peanut butter and jelly. Chicken and waffles. Sonny and Cher. Starsky and Hutch!!! It’s never much of a challenge to come up with pairs that are funny, delicious, or total ’70′s throwbacks, but listing obvious dangerous duos can be a little tougher. I don’t know what comes to mind for you, but two things that don’t do well together for me are sheet metal and cables.
At one point or another in your life, chances are you’ve inadvertently made contact with the edge of a piece of sheet metal, and sustained, at very least, a scratch. Sharp sheet metal edges can be really nasty to things that are softer then they are, be that human skin, or even cable insulation. That’s why it’s so important to cover them up and render them harmless -but how do you accomplish that feat?
Easy. Just try some adhesive-lined grommet edging from Panduit®. Designed for use in server rooms and data centers where enclosures made of sheet metal abound, this completely customizable product gives a quick fix when you need to make cable cutouts safe for contact with both hands and network cables. The grommet material comes on a roll, so you can cut off the exact amount you’ll need. And it’s even lined with adhesive, so once it’s in place, it will stay exactly where you want it to.
Here’s how it works (this won’t take long). First, as I just mentioned, you cut off a piece that’s the same length as the sheet metal edge you need to cover. Next you apply the grommet edging by slipping it onto the edge (the sheet metal will slide easily into the grommet channel). And for a finishing touch, pinch the applied grommet between your thumb and forefinger all along its length, so that the adhesive lining activates and gets a good grip on the sheet metal. And, well… that’s about it.
Not a bad day’s work, considering that the tiniest amount of effort and a very cost-effective product are all you need to invest in the safety of your cables and your fingers. Believe me, you’ll appreciate this stuff the very first time you run wiring through a sheet metal cutout and manage to finish the task with both the cable jackets and your skin intact. I promise you this: sheet metal and grommet edging are a way better combo than Sonny and Cher.
Filed under: Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets, Tools and Cases
Say you have a cable bundle to route along the surface of a wall. Say that the wall just happens to be made out of unsealed brick or aerated concrete. Say that the adhesive cable tie mounts you had stashed in your tool kit for just such an occasion refuse to stick. Say… a few really bad words.
No, wait, I take that back. Hold on to the profanity, and save it for a more worthwhile situation – one that there isn’t actually a solution for. Because there’s a really quick fix for the little cable tie mount/brick wall incompatibility problem you’re having right now. And it’s called the Mille-Anchor™ Cable Tie Anchoring System, by Millepede™.
Because of the rough and porous texture of brick and concrete, it’s pretty tough to mount anything to these materials with adhesive, because, simply put, it just won’t stick. But Mille-Anchors™ surmounts this annoying little detail by going straight through that uncooperative surface and driving the cable tie mounts right into the wall.
Don’t let this put you off, though, because unlike drywall anchors, you don’t have to pre-drill before you can use Mille-Anchors™ – they hammer right in, no power tools required. And once they’re in, they’re incredibly low-profile, so when your cable bundles are lashed onto them, the cables won’t jut out extra far from the wall. Nice design feature. And they’re very resistant to pulling out, so once they’re in place, they’ll stay there until you deliberately remove them.
I know that the products I tell you about usually have to do with practicality, safety, or organization, but we’re going to cut loose today and take a tangent toward the goofy. Just for the heck of it (and because they make me grin), I’d like to introduce you to our Animal Cord Clips.
Well, now that I’m thinking about it, I guess that these clips do get you somewhere in the department of organization. But don’t let that fool you – they’re still fun! Animal cord clips are backed with adhesive hook- and-loop, so you just peel the liner off the hook-and-loop and stick the cord clips to a wall, your desk, your computer monitor, or anywhere else you need them to gather up some excess cable length.
There aren’t many cord organizers out there that also have cartoonish good looks (now there’s an oxymoron for you), which is why these are so popular with kids. My sister used to work with kindergarteners and first graders, so I bought her the entire set of Animal Cord Clips, thinking they’d be a fun addition to her classroom. She very creatively made a few simple alterations and turned them into magnets, which were such a hit with the kiddies that the students would actually ask to take them home. That’s all the proof you need.
Personally, I’m going to magnetize my “Tiptoe the Elephant” cord clip and keep him on my refrigerator, to act as a pen-holder next to my grocery list. That, ladies and gentlemen, is what I like to call “using your noodle.” So, what are you going to do with your Animal Cord Clips?
When it comes to cable management, cable ties (aka “zip ties”) are one of the simplest solutions out there for bundling up cords and wires. They’re cheap, they’re easy to use, and they work fast. There’s just one problem: they’re only good for a single use. As soon as you need to cut them off to reconfigure your cables, they’re useless – you have to start over from scratch. This is all thanks to the locking-head that most standard cable ties have; while it’s great for keeping things in place, it also makes it impossible to remove or adjust a cable tie once the tie has been applied. There’s no turning back.
And talk about the waste. In addition to the fact that you have to throw cable ties away after just a single use, there’s also the issue of all those good-for-nothing clippings that come from trimming the “tails” of cable ties flush after installation. That’s a lot of wasted plastic, and don’t forget that you paid for it. But that’s not all: cable ties are also subject to over-tightening, which can damage cable insulation and compress conductors so much that data signals are interrupted or completely cut off.
Wow! Is it me, or did I just go on (and on) about the drawbacks of zip ties? Don’t get me wrong, they’re actually a great product, it’s just that those are a few points that you have to consider if you’re going to be using them on a large scale or in conjunction with especially sensitive cables. This all leads up to me introducing you to Mille-Ties, a revolutionary new breed of cable ties that are kinder, gentler, and yes, reusable.
Instead of being composed of a solid plastic strap with a molded-on locking head, the Mille-Tie is built like a chain, made up of many individual links or cells. It stretches, flexes, and bends to conform to cable bundles without putting stress on them, and is virtually impossible to overtighten. Mille-Ties ratchet snugly around cable bundles, but their design causes them to automatically stop tightening as soon as they’ve reached their tensioning limit, so you don’t have to worry about damaged or malfunctioning cables.
MIlle-Ties also greatly reduce waste because after you complete a tie and trim the tail off, you can actually use the excess to make another tie. The Mille-Tie is designed so that all of the larger cells (that’s every other cell) act as locking heads, so as long as the cut-off tail is long enough to make it around your cable bundle, you can use it just as you would a full-sized Mille-Tie. Pretty cool, huh?
And finally, I’ll go into that whole removable/resuable thing I mentioned earlier. While they won’t let go until you purposely remove them, Mille-Ties don’t lock permanently, so it’s incredibly easy to reuse them. Once you have a Mille-Tie tightened around your cable bundle, all you have to do is thread the end back through the same cell, leaving just a tiny loop behind. This leaves you with a little release-tab to pull on to release the cables while leaving you with an intact cable tie that’s ready to use again.
Filed under: Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets, Tools and Cases
If you’ve ever hand-bundled wires with cable ties, you’ve probably found that it doesn’t take long for your fingers to start feeling unmistakably raw. Between the force needed to grip such small objects and the friction that the zip ties create against your hands as you tighten them, large-scale cable tie installations can easily lead to blisters. And that’s just with standard, flexible nylon cable ties – ever tried to hand-install the heavy duty stainless steel kind? Yikes!
Luckily, HellermannTyton makes a stainless steel cable tie tensioning tool that’s become the saving grace of industrial installation technicians around the world. Also commonly known as a “cable tie gun” because of its unmistakably pistol-like shape and trigger-driven operation, this tool allows you to ratchet cable ties made of 304 and 316 stainless steel to the perfect tension without causing yourself any unnecessary discomfort.
Well, we’ve covered the physical pitfalls of hand-tensioning stainless steel cable ties, but did you know that doing things by hand can also have consequences for your cables as well? It’s very easy to overtighten cable ties, and when that happens, it can not only lead to damaged cable insulation, but compressed conductors as well. And what’s wrong with a few compressed conductors? They don’t transmit data as well, and can sometimes fail altogether. The whole reason for having cables in the first place is to transmit data from Point A to Point B. Don’t let something as simple as overtensioned cable ties cripple your network. Cable tie tensioning tools only let you tighten the ties up to a certain point, so that they’re securely holding cable bundles together, but not biting into them. They take the guesswork out of installation, while leaving you with neatly (and safely) organized cables every time.
So how do cable tie installation tools work? Simple. You get things started by looping the cable tie around a bundle of cords, and then insert the tie’s tip through its head – but stop there. Next, grab the installation tool, feed the tip into the end of the gun, and pull the tool’s trigger until the cable tie is perfectly tightened. And did I mention that you won’t need a separate tool to trim off the cable tie’s end? This tool even cuts tensioned cable ties to size.
Today’s feature is one of the simplest products we carry at CableOrganizer.com, but if you ask me, it’s also one of the most useful. I don’t know about you, but I can think of more than a few uses for adhesive-backed cord clips. I’ve used them both at home and at work for hanging Christmas lights (indoors), routing a ridiculously long phone wire around a doorway, and even running cables along the underside of my desktop.
These self-stick clips are small (only ⅝” or ¾” square, your choice), weigh practically nothing, and have a strong adhesive that hangs tenaciously onto walls, furniture, or any other flat surfaces you need them to grip. As far as design goes, our adhesive-backed cord clips are basically tiny plastic square bases that have round-contoured retaining clips molded right into them. They’re very low-profile, so they won’t draw much attention, and are super easy to use – just peel the backing off, stick to a flat surface, clip your cable in, and you’re done.
Filed under: Cable Ties, Clips and Grommets, Cable Wraps
For any of you out there who want to get rid of extra cord length with minimum effort, let me introduce you to the Cord-It™ Cord Manager. This compact cord winder requires so little exertion that it can actually organize your cables with no more than a turn of the wrist.
The key to the Cord-It’s simplicity is its unique design. It’s basically a hard plastic case with a slotted, rotating top. To put it in action, just insert any cord up to 5mm in diameter into the slot, turn the top, and watch as the cord is magically shortened to the exact length you need. Okay, so maybe you can’t attribute the cable management so much to “magic” as you can the hidden inner spool. The turning action draws cords inside the case and neatly winds them around the spool at the same time, in one simple motion.
Aside from being easy to use, the Cord-It™ has the added benefit of keeping all of that excess wire clean and free of dust. At only 3″ and 4″ in diameter, both medium and large Cord-Its are perfectly compact, which makes them as great for travel as they are around your home or office. Choose form black, beige, clear or white.