Cable Assembly Manufacturing Capabilities
Epec Engineered Technologies offers a wide range of custom cable solutions and manufacturing capabilities that can be used for almost any power or data application. Our expertise is the design and manufacturing of these cables, allowing our team to guide your design towards the lowest cost, highest performing, and most appropriate solution for your custom cable project. We provide solutions that include the design, development, prototyping, production, and inventory management of your custom cable assembly.
Our custom cable assemblies include production capabilities for both low volume/high mix to high volume/low mix production quantities, allowing Epec to leverage its global manufacturing locations for your project. Using SOLIDWORKS to design all custom cable designs, we can use STP files to print 3D prototypes of your design, allowing for earlier fit checks and the elimination of design risk. Once the design is frozen, we transition production to our full-rate factories and manage the inventory for the life of the project.
Custom Cable Assemblies Options
Low Voltage Hook-Up Wire Harnesses
Requiring 300VDC or less, Epec supports a wide variety of UL spec and industry standard wire harness constructions. Ranging from 1 to +100 conductors, Epec can provide solutions for both discrete wire and multiconductor cross sections. These types of wire harnesses serve as the internal wire harnesses for consumer products, industrial machines, medical devices, and most of the everyday electronics we rely on.
Data & Video Cables- D-Sub, USB, HMDI, DisplayPort
Epec supports countless industry standard cable configurations that include D-Sub, USB, HDMI, DisplayPort, RCA, and the dozens of varieties within each family. This includes both male and female genders, standard and mini variants, and the “A,” “B,” and “C” USB connector types. Epec can also support several ethernet cable and telephone jack type connectors that include RJ45, RJ11, etc. Each of these designs can be overmolded to provide enough ruggedization and strain relief.
Custom Overmolded Cables
The overmold portion of cables is designed to protect the delicate electrical components and connections within cable assemblies. Overmolds can also provide additional levels of customization to add artwork, handles, encapsulate PCBAs, etc. The overmold materials are specified to properly bond to the parent jacket material of the cable providing a waterproof and ruggedized connector for the sensitive electronics within.
Flat Flexible Cables & Ribbon Cables
Flat flexible cables, also known as ribbon cables, are a string of parallel wires bonded alongside one another. With their jackets fused typically in a single row, the wire size and pitch or spacing can vary with the project needs. Constructions can range from 2 to +60 conductors with several industry standard cross sections. We have numerous options to bring your design to market. One of the most common types of ribbon cables is our 0.050” pitch 28AWG UL approved design that is available in most conductor counts. These cables are typically gray with PIN1 identified with a stripe. Custom colors and extrusions are available.
Shielded Cable Assemblies
Most cables contain some level of shielding. This shielding could be an armored shield to protect the cable (like the armoring on a payphone cable). But typically, when Engineers talk about shielded cables, they are referring to conductive layers of foil and braid to protect the signal integrity and to contain all electromagnetic emissions within the cable.
Epec offers all types of electrically shielded cables that range from low voltage USB cables to Mil-STD designed and certified shielded cables. In order to recommend the ideal shielding solution, Epec must learn about the type of signal being passed, the program test requirements, and the mechanical constraints of the system. Since shielding can add cost and weight, it should be explored only if the system demands it.
General use power cables power cables typically operate at less than 30VDC or less than 120VAC and use a wide range of cable technologies. Many of these cables are designed using standard wire construction materials such as PVC jackets, tinned copper conductors, and thermoplastic overmolds and connectors. House tooling exists for many standard connectors that include DC power barrel plugs as well as AC 0ower plugs including NEMA 5-15P and 5-15/20. Epec also supports several outdoor rated power cables and extension cord required SOW, SOOW, and SJT wire.
Coaxial Cable Assemblies
Coaxial cables are designed using a center conductor wrapped in a dielectric material all within an outer shielded jacket. The center conductor and outer shield each represent a single electrical circuit enabling a 2-conductor design to be used in a single cable bundle. Typically used to transmit high speed data or RF signals, coaxial cable for ultra-high speeds in excess of 1-2GHz requires high performance materials and processing. However, everyday RG316 coaxial cable can be quite a cost-effective option and is a viable option for lower frequency applications when using a BNC connector or SMA male/female connector.
Industry Specific Products
Automotive Wire Harnesses
Requiring automotive grade wire, PPAP report submissions, and an extensive development cycle, Epec supports various program requirements for the automotive industry. Many of these custom cable harnesses require specialty waterproof and dust connectors and caps or an SAE approval specification. Automotive cables are known to use compression molded silicone gaskets and seals, as well as custom overmolds and grommets. Epec supports common wire that includes SAE J-1128, TXL/GXL ratings as well as overmold compounds that include Exxon Santoprene.
Medical Device Cable Assemblies
Medical devices use several types of cables to pass power, data, and high-resolution video. Many medical cables require biocompatibility, sterilization, and compliance to ISO 13485 accreditations as well. Epec supports numerous wire jacket and overmold technologies to withstand ethylene oxide sterilization, and autoclave sterilization, as well as exposure to isopropyl alcohol. In order to help get to market faster for less cost, Epec maintains house tooling that can be used for medical imaging connectors such as common 11pin/12pin high resolution-video plugs.
Mil-spec 38999 is a common and large encompassing specification for military grade electrical harnesses. Epec provides design for manufacturability expertise on these complex cables that are typically equipped with circular connectors and mil-hardened components. Many of these cables require specialty wire jacket materials and corrosion inhibiting conductor coatings that can be assembled with complex connector systems. Mil-spec 38999 connector systems usually require dedicated equipment such as backshell torque wrenches, insertion/extraction tooling, crimpers, HIPOT test apparatus, or even megohmmeters to fulfill the programs objectives. Epec offers ITAR certified assembly options and many of the test and assembly equipment in stock to quickly support projects with export-controlled program requirements.
Vertically Integrated Wire Harness Manufacturing
Watch our cable assembly video as we review the steps in building a custom cable harness. The first step is to extrude a single conductor jacketed wire and then bundle it with other wires to form a multiconductor cable. Spooled wire can be stored until the rest of the assembly is ready to kit.