Wiring Harness News WHN Sept-Oct 2020 WHN Sep-Oct 2020 - Page 40

40 SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2020 Wiring Harness News INDUSTRIAL INFO-TAINMENT Strain-Relief: Design Tips for Durability and Aesthetic Appeal Continued from page 31 ____________ of plastic segments which come in contact with one another create a minimum bend radius, and are very effective in that direction. Because this design allows for strain reduction in only one axis, the applications are specific: this design is very useful in applications like mechatronics or robotics where the cable will be bending the same direction every time. 2. Multi-Direction Strain Relief As with the design above, multidirection strain relief relies on plastic segments limiting the bend radius, protecting the vulnerable connection (Fig. 3). This design, though, allows for movement in two or more directions, alternating the connection points between segments. Because of the flexibility of the design, this is the best option for most consumer products, and is widely available. 3. Solid Strain Relief Increasingly popular for mostly aesthetic reasons, solid strain relief can be seen on everything from lightning cables to vacuum cleaner cords (Fig. 4). While it looks great, this design requires extra caution, as often the strain relief area is too stiff, and the strain is concentrated at the junction between the strain relief and the cable. The key here is to make sure that the strain relief is flexible enough to allow the cable to bend inside the strain relief area, not at the junction. Even great designers can get this wrong. Figure 4. Solid strain relief gone bad! This method requires extra attention to work correctly ā€¨Figure 3. Multi-direction strain relief is the most versatile As an additional consideration, cleaning is simplest with solid designs, and so it becomes the only option for food, beverage and medical industries. Just remember to approach the design carefully. _____________ Continued on page 42