Q: I am looking for a machine that would wrap fiber-optic cable around an existing overhead cable line. The idea would be to use the existing line and poles to add a transmission network over the line of a power company. This machine would ride the existing cable and wrap fiber-optic cable around it. Do you know of a company that provides such a device?
A: How about a machine that would "lash" the fiber-optic cable to the existing cable or strand? The machine you are looking for is a cable-lashing machine (sometimes called a "lasher" or "spinner") that winds stainless steel wire around telephone, power, and multimedia cable, thereby securing it to the supporting messenger strand. Although there are other manufacturers, General Machine Products (Trevose, PA) comes to mind. The company began manufacturing lashers for Western Electric under the watchful eye of Bell Telephone Laboratories in the late 1930s. For more information, browse the company`s Web site at www.gmptools.com.
Donna Ballast is a communications analyst at The University of Texas at Austin and a BISCI registered communications distribution designer (RCDD). Questions can be sent to her at:
Cabling Installation & Maintenance or at PO Drawer 7580,
The University of Texas,
Austin, TX 78713;
tel: (512) 471-0112,
fax: (512) 471-8883,