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Robotic Cable Assemblies

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Cable assemblies may not be the most important part of welding automation when you are evaluating different options. As you look at all the options for robot torch options, you might overlook a crucial part of the torch. The quality of your cable assemblies plays an important role in optimizing the efficiency of your automated welding processes.
Consider what the torch’s torch’s cable assembly does: The cable assembly supplies all power from the wire feeder to the contact tip to the filler metal. It is important to minimize downtime when using automated welding processes. A high-quality cable assembly is necessary to achieve this. A higher quality cable assembly will allow for greater production, a better product and more profit from your welding cell.

You will need to be able to distinguish between a quality and a poor quality robotic cable assembly. A robot cable’s physical and spec characteristics are indicators of its quality and suitability for welding automation. It is important that you use the correct cable assembly for your requirements. This is the cable rating.

You should match the cable rating to the welding process you are using. It is also important to determine the current running through your cable and how long it will last. A larger cable will not transfer current as well as a properly-sized one. A cable that is higher than you need is a waste. A 600 amp cable won’t weld your materials faster than 300 amp. A 600 amp cable will only weld at 350 amp if your machine has a 350 amp amperage.
Physical Characteristics of a Good Torch Cable for Welding

A good quality cable assembly will have excellent wear protection. Cable covers and insulation are designed to protect the cable from the elements but not restrict its flexibility.

A worn cable can cause decreased current transfer, resistance and hot spots in the different sections. This is a safety hazard that can lead to your robot being unable to function properly. It can also result in a decrease in production.

To ensure the highest quality build quality, inspect all cables when looking at possible cable assemblies. These are the things to watch out for:

The cable is evenly crimped on both ends
There are no weak spots or thin spots in the cable
Copper needed for proper amperage

Cables for Robotic Torch Cables

Another thing to think about when installing over-arm cable assemblies is the length of the cable to allow your robot arm to reach certain positions and extend it. Cable assemblies that are pulled and slack often will wear faster.

Cables that are not well made or of poor quality will be more likely to break under additional stress. Cables that are bent or twisted frequently may cause wire feeding problems.

To get the best out of your cable assembly, it is crucial to find the right amount of slack.
Robotic Torch Cables with Through-arm Arm

Although through-arm assemblies require a cable, this cable serves the same functions as an overhead-arm system. Cable length is the most important aspect of a through arm system. This is because there is very little space to exceed the specifications.

The most common specifications for through-arm cables length are within a few millimeters. This is a vastly different situation than an over-arm system. An acceptable length for through-arm cables will be six inches, or even one foot.
Cables for water-cooled robotic torch

The water-cooled cables assemblies are another option for robot welding cables. Because they dissipate heat from current transfer, water-cooled cables are a great option. A 500A air-cooled cable measures nearly 3/4 inch in diameter. A 500A water-cooled cable measures about 3/8″. The neck of a water-cooled assembly is also water-cooled. The water will flow down to the tip holder, helping to dissipate current heat transfer and reflective heat from contact tips. Hybrid cable assemblies are an option if a water-cooled unit is not within your budget.

Cable Assemblies for Hybrid Robotic Welding

Hybrid cable assemblies have the cable itself being air-cooled while your front parts (neck, contact tips holder, etc.) are water-cooled. Hybrid cable assemblies have the advantage of being air-cooled, while your front end parts (neck, contact tip holder, etc.) are water-cooled. This means that you get all the benefits of a water-cooled front-end with the cost savings associated with an air-cooled cable.

A hybrid cable assembly may not be the best choice for your welding process. There are potential amperage limitations and increased wear from using the less durable, air-cooled cable.

You can choose from many options when choosing a cable assembly to automate your welding processes. However, it is important to consider all the factors and make the right choice. Quality robot welding cables are worth the investment.