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What Are Cable Ties: Reusable versus Stainless Steel Cable Ties

Updated on April 18, 2015
A simple cable tie.
A simple cable tie.

The cable ties are used in various applications including industrial wiring, office equipment wiring, and also domestic wiring for home improvement for example tying computer cables, fastening and securing power cables, and binding and securing cables and wires of many other equipments. This article also puts light on types of cable ties such as reusable plastic cable ties and stainless steel cable ties and also provides comparison on reusable versus stainless steel cable ties. Read on....

What are Cable Ties? Cable ties are usually nylon-lined fasteners with unified gear racks, which are used to bind and organize together several electrical wires or cables in one place at one time. A cable tie is also called a zap strap, a zip tie, a zip strip, a mouse belt, a wire tie, a tie wrap, and a rat belt or a quick draw but most commonly they are called zip ties. Cable ties were discovered in 1958 by a famous electrical, electronic, utility, and mechanical products manufacturing company known as Thomas and Betts. The initial product was named as Ty-Rap and it was at that time made for airplane wire harnesses. Thomas and Betts used a metal ratchet instead of commonly used nylon in Ty-Rap.

How a cable tie works?

The recently popular cable ties work in the following manner: At one end of the cable tie lies a small square case through which we can feed the other end of the cable tie. Cable ties consist of a robust Nylon tape with a unified gear rack as mentioned above, and at one end, there is a ratchet inside a tiny open case. Now if you will pull the pointed tip of cable tie through the case and push it past the ratchet, it will prevent the tie from being pulled back again and the resulting or consequent loop will be only able to pull tighter and cannot be opened up again. This happens because teeth on the cable ties are arranged in a saw-tooth design and as you have read above, the cable tie case contains a ratchet, which then locks against the teeth (also as shown in the image on the side), which prevents the tie from being pulled back again.

Use of Cable Ties

Though the most common use of cable ties is to bind together and organize cables, it has many other possible uses, which include binding electrical wires, computer cables, speaker cables, power cords, and home theater equipment cables. Some people also use cable ties to bind abnormally hanging plants together. Police and military in Panamá, United Kingdom, and United States of America have also used cable ties to serve as temporary handcuffs known as PlastiCuffs or makeshift handcuffs that are a larger sized cable ties made specially for restraining prisoners. Most interestingly also at a construction site in Singapore, cable ties have also been employed to bind the shade cloth to scaffold. Cable ties are also used to avoid wheel trims or hubcaps from falling off of a moving vehicle. Cable ties are also sold specially for the above purpose.

Traditional Cable Ties Versus Reusable Cable Ties

As you have read above, the traditional cable ties cannot be opened up again or used again and only be tightened and the easiest way to remove cable ties is to cut the tie and then discard it but some cable tie manufacturers claim of producing reusable cable ties which by their saying is a system through which anyone can secure and bundle several ropes, cables, and plants together and then use the tie again because it includes a reusable plastic strap which is wrapped around the cables or ropes, but despite these claims of producing reusable cable ties, it is highly recommended to use fresh cable ties for extra strength and durability because it is possible to lessen the tension on the ratchet and then loosen the tie, but due to the cheap and disposable nature of the tie, it is usually recommended to buy a new cable tie. Mille-Tie is an advanced reusable plastic cable tie, which is designed to replace traditional fabric hooks, nylon zip ties, Velcro cable ties, and tie wraps but again durability and strength are the two major points for which use of Millie-Tie is doubtful.

Panduit Stainless Steel Cable Ties, 6" Max Bundle Diameter, Box of 50

Stainless Steel Cable Ties

Stainless Steel cable ties are made up of stainless steel instead of nylon and are mostly used for flameproof applications because coated stainless steel ties help prevent electric shock or attack from dissimilar metals such as zinc-coated cable ties.

Except cable ties, there are also available other methods of binding cable together securely which include binding knots for example constrictor knots or surgeon's knots and cable lacing, conveyor belt hooks, Velcro hook and loop strips, twist ties, metal clips, Rapstrap fasteners, and Cablox cable management systems.

Other forms of cable ties available in the market are wire tie wraps, Velcro cable ties, cable clamps, cable fasteners, releasable cable ties, metal cable ties, heavy duty cable ties, stainless steel zip ties.


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    • soni2006 profile image

      Rajinder Soni 7 years ago from New Delhi, India

      You should post only one time. Repeated posts will be deleted - cable ties sale.

    • profile image

      cable ties sale 7 years ago

      Great sharing! Thanks for your article. I would also like to share you my articles about cable ties and cable clamps, hope you will like it.

    • soni2006 profile image

      Rajinder Soni 7 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Thanks for your updates on cable ties and your advice.

    • profile image

      Cable Ties 7 years ago

      Thanks for your sharing on Cable Ties my friend

      At present, Self-Locking Cable Ties are most popular

      Besides, Resuable Cable Ties are also ok

      When You purchase Cable Ties, Pay attention of Material

    • soni2006 profile image

      Rajinder Soni 7 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Thanks Mark for the additional input in this article. Great info. Thanks for liking my work.

    • profile image

      Mark Stephenson 7 years ago

      Hello Soni,

      Thank you for your unique history of cable ties post! I've been working with Millepede for about a year now and have yet to find a good, unbiased article like this. The one section I would add is, of course, the particular property that makes the market for the Mille-Tie; crush! It's important to keep in mind that zip ties and others can easily deform or crush sensitive data cables, video cabling and fiber optics while the Mille-Tie will never do so!

    • soni2006 profile image

      Rajinder Soni 8 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Thank you so much Mr. Kothari for adding up this hub in your hubbers India blog. I will definitely check it out and comment. Best of luck for the New Year.

    • JYOTI KOTHARI profile image

      Jyoti Kothari 8 years ago from Jaipur

      Hi Soni,

      I am not a guy who knows much about electrical appliances. However, you have explained it nicely.

      I liked this and going to link it to hubbers India blog. Please visit and comment. I hope this will bring traffic to your hubs.


      Jyoti Kothari

    • soni2006 profile image

      Rajinder Soni 8 years ago from New Delhi, India

      After searching on price of cable ties and different manufacturers, I found out that Panduit Stainless Steel Cable Ties are the best and price is reasonable because of its high durability and strength as compared to cheap not trustworthy cable ties from Chinese manufacturers. Those are cheap but strength and durability remains a question for them.

    • soni2006 profile image

      Rajinder Soni 8 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Thanks a lot Veronica.

    • Veronica Allen profile image

      Veronica Allen 8 years ago from Georgia

      Thanks for the information Soni, it's always a pleasure.


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