OK we've talked about MIMS and a few other cable types here. Anyone else care to submit some cable types for discussion?. If you have pictures all the better. Please submit them to me or Paul or C-H for posting here. Cheers, Mike.
Funny you should bring this up. I tried to buy some highly flexible cable a couple of weeks ago. (3 x 16 mm2) Miminum order was on the order of 300 m which was three times as much as I needed. They could get me 3 x 25 mm2. I called the next manufacturer only to get the same answer. Confounded, I called another one and got the same answer an third time.
I finally ordered with the first manufacturer. The cable arrived Tuesday and I noted, somewhat surprised, that it had been shipped from the second manufacturer I had called. Apparently the manufacturers cooperate to some extent and had been pointing to the very same cable drum somewhere in Germany.
Some manufacturers will make a cable entirely to your specifications if you buy 3 km / 10' feet or more.
One sort of cable system I still see a wee bit of over here, is the old cloth-covered rubber wires inside wood casing, it used to be used here for Service Lines into the main switchboard here. Thankfully most of it has been removed these days, I accidently stood on a length of it when working up in a roof once. Man did it go off with an explosion!!, the casing was only just holding the (now bare) wires apart inside and once disturbed, look out!. Worse still, the heat from the explosion ignited the wood splinters. I really watched what I stood on up in roof voids after that. C-H, That would be a surprise!. We have a cut-to-length service here for most types/sizes of cable. Sure, it does cost a bit more, but it saves wondering what you're going to do with what's left over, especially if it's a really odd type of cable.
the old cloth-covered rubber wires inside wood casing,
A similar method was used here in the early days. Cables were run in grooves in the wood, then a cover fixed over the top. There might still be some of it in use in a very old property which hasn't been rewired, but I haven't seen any of it for years.
The earliest wiring methods I've seen here were: individual cloth and rubber covered wires in isolators (glass or porcelaine), twisted lamp cord style wire on isolators. Later on they used tar impregnated cloth wire, either in Bergmann conduit (basically asphalted cardboard with a thin metal sheathing around) or just in plaster. That wiring method was used until the advent of PVC insulated wires in the 1950ies. Bergmann conduit survived until around 1960.
Some months ago I found a place where somebody had tried to "replicate" the old wiring... by twisting blue PVC-isolated conduit wire and stringing it up on a few nails down in the moist basement... good thing the house was scheduled for demolition just a few days later... (but just for the dodgy wiring, otherwise it was a real shame for the old rock-solid 1900 brick house!!!)
here they will cut it to lenght if it is in stock. If they have to make it for you they won't. How much you need to buy depends on the price and how busy they are. I suppose it takes to long to set up the machines to make only a few metres of cable.
I lived in a tenement flat in Edinburgh as a student, that had cabling that looked like normal T&E except it had a lead jacket. But then the heating was an original victorian open coal kitchen range and the bath taps had 1881 and 1882 stamped on them.
I have come across the lead sheathed wiring before, the rubber insulation inside the sheath was in very good condition considering it was nearly 60 years old.
Also have found the IRV cable in oak or other hardwood capping as described by Trumpy and Paul, had it on the lighting circuits in our old house until 1990, when it shorted out above a light fixture and nearly set fire to the attic
I left some of the capping in place, the grooves were just the right size for 1.5mm Twin and Earth
I have a pic for the unusual cable types thread, of some cable that I believe to be 3 core, 3/0.036. It's sheathed in soft rubber, it doesn't seem to have deteriorated as these cables often do. It shows the old red/white/blue colour coding that was used here and I believe in NZ and Aus. No earth wire, and very flexible compared to the modern equivalent.
This was in use on a 2-way lighting circuit until about 3 years ago.
[This message has been edited by Trumpy (edited 06-23-2005).]
Oddly enough Chipmunk, We've just changed over to the Red/White/Blue 3 Phase colour code over here, it was Red/Yellow/Blue before that. Regarding your comments on TRS (Rubber Sheathed) cables, rubber sheathed cables are quite quite hard-wearing as long as they aren't subjected to too higher temperatures. It will however be interesting to see how well this PVC sheathed stuff looks after a few years up in a hot roof void.