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  1. Paralleled Cables

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    Click to ExpandParalleled Cables

    Parallel or paralleled cables are a configuration where multiple cables are combined. Parallels are used to make cable installation easier, since only one reel needs to be set up for installation, rather than one reel per cable.

    This article will explore the basics of paralleled cables, examining their configuration and the products that can be utilized in a similar setup.

    How Paralleled Cables Work

    Paralleled cables work by combining multiple individual wires into a single bundled configuration. This involves taking up to four separate cables and winding them onto a single reel to create a consolidated assembly. The wires are typically selected based on their intended application and requirements.

    The cables are meticulously arranged side by side and then wound together. This process ensures that the components maintain a consistent orientation and are securely held together. Proper organization and management of the bundled cables also prevent tangling, reduce signal interference, and facilitate easier installation and maintenance.

    Paralleled cables offer several advantages over using individual ones. First, they help reduce clutter, making installations more manageable. Second, the configuration reduces the risk of cable damage and abrasion, as the elements are less likely to become tangled or snagged. This configuration allows for streamlined routing and easier identification of specific cables within the bundle. Lastly, parallels reduce  installation time resulting in reduced labor costs.

    Common Products for Parallel Configuration

    Paralleling the following products allows for an increase in overall ampacity, enabling the transmission of higher electrical currents while ensuring optimal performance:

    Cross-Linked High Heat Water-Resistant (XHHW-2) Cables

    XHHW-2 cables feature cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) insulation, which provides excellent thermal stability and heat resistance. This material allows them to handle higher operating temperatures than traditional thermoplastic insulators. They are also engineered to be water-resistant, protecting them from moisture and environmental conditions.

    These components are available in various sizes and voltage ratings to accommodate different installation requirements. They are often used in motor wiring, lighting fixtures, control systems, and applications where reliable and efficient electrical connectivity is essential. Furthermore, suitable connectors and proper bending radii are critical during installation to prevent system damage.

    Paralleling XHHW-2 cables enables them to be used in the following applications:

    • Data centers
    • Industrial settings
    • Large-scale commercial installations
    • Manufacturing facilities
    • Oil and gas refineries
    • Power plants

    Thermoplastic High Heat Resistant Nylon (THHN) Cables

    THHN cables use thermoplastic polyvinyl chloride (PVC) insulation, which offers good electrical insulation and resistance to moisture, chemicals, and abrasion. They also have a nylon outer jacket to increase their durability and heat endurance. Thus, they are rated for applications with temperatures reaching 90°C (194°F).

    These cables come in various wire sizes or gauges, ranging from 14 American Wire Gauge (AWG) to thousand circular mils (MCM). This size determines the cable’s current-carrying capacity, with larger ones capable of carrying higher currents. The conductor’s insulation is also color-coded, with commonly used colors including black, white, red, green, and blue.

    The size or gauge of the paralleled THHN cables must be the same to ensure even current distribution. Each cable’s length in the parallel arrangement should also be equal to minimize resistance and current flow imbalances. Here are some of the common applications of paralleled THHN cables:

    • Data centers
    • Electric vehicle charging stations
    • High-capacity power distribution systems
    • High-power lighting systems
    • Industrial machinery
    • Large electrical motors

    Classic Wire & Cable for Superior Wiring Solutions

    At Classic Wire & Cable, our utmost priority is to deliver reliable wires and cables that meet the unique project requirements of our customers! We take pride in offering high-quality products that can be customized to any desired length. Whether you need a few feet or thousands of meters, we can provide the perfect solution for your wiring needs.

    Contact us today or request a quote!

  2. What To Look For in XHHW-2 Cables

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    XHHW-2 is an acronym for XLPE (cross-linked polyethylene) High Heat-resistant Water-resistant. These cables are designed to withstand high temperatures and harsh environments and are commonly used for power distribution, lighting, and control circuits. Moreover, their excellent thermal and electrical properties make XHHW-2 cables a reliable choice for a wide range of industrial and commercial applications.

    To choose the right XHHW-2 cable for your needs, it’s essential to understand its features and specifications. This article will delve into the important aspects of XHHW-2 cables that you must consider when choosing the right cable for your application.

    Key Factors To Consider When Selecting XHHW-2 Cables

    The following are the key considerations when selecting XHHW-2 cables:


    The ampacity is determined by the size of the cable’s conductor and the type of insulation used. When selecting an XHHW-2 cable, it is important to consider the ampacity rating based on the amount of current that your specific application requires.

    Voltage Rating

    The voltage rating of an XHHW-2 cable refers to the maximum voltage at which the cable can operate safely. It’s essential to choose a cable with a voltage rating that meets or exceeds the requirements of your specific application. Failure to do so could result in safety hazards and equipment damage.

    Conductor Size

    The conductor size determines the amount of electrical current the cable can safely carry. Choosing a cable with a conductor size that’s too small for your application could result in overheating and potential risks.

    Insulation Material

    The insulation material of an XHHW-2 cable plays a vital role in protecting the conductor from damage and ensuring the cable’s durability. XLPE is the insulation material for XHHW-2 cables due to its excellent electrical properties and resistance to heat and moisture.

    Temperature Rating

    The temperature rating of a cable refers to the maximum temperature at which the cable can safely operate without deteriorating or melting. For example, XHHW-2 cables typically have temperature ratings of 75 °C, 90 °C, or 110 °C.

    If the cable is exposed to higher temperatures than its rating, it can become damaged and fail, leading to costly downtime and potentially hazardous situations. On the other hand, choosing a cable with a lower temperature rating than necessary can result in inefficiencies and reduced performance.

    Cable Tray (CT) Marking

    There are many building wire installations where single conductors, such as XHHW-2 are used. The NEC (National Electrical Code) Article 392 recognizes single conductor cables for use in cable trays (CT) where the conductor is marked “CT” or more commonly, “FOR CT USE”.

    Not all manufacturers offer XHHW-2 with the CT marking, as this marking is optional under UL 44 and UL 83. Many distributors and contractors assume all XHHW-2 is the same, however, it is not. All Classic Wire XHHW-2, sized 1/0 AWG and larger, are marked “FOR CT USE”.

    There are a few requirements that the single conductor must satisfy in order to be marked for use in cable tray (CT):

    1. The single conductor must be a circuit conductor sized 1/0 AWG or larger, or an equipment grounding conductor sized 4 AWG or larger; and
    2. Flame tested using the vertical-tray flame test (“Method 1 – vertical tray” in UL 2556), or the FT4 vertical-tray flame test (“Method 2 – FT4” in UL 2556).

    Applications of XHHW-2 Cables

    Here are some of the most common applications of XHHW-2 cables in industrial and commercial projects:

    • Power distribution
    • Motor connections
    • Lighting
    • Control wiring
    • HVAC systems
    • Renewable energy

    Get Top-Quality XHHW-2 Cables at Classic Wire Cable

    If you’re looking for the best XHHW-2 cables for your project, Classic Wire Cable has your back! Our team of experienced industry professionals is committed to providing exceptional customer service and expertise to help electrical distributors succeed. In addition, we have a knowledgeable sales team, boast access to local NEMRA-affiliated representatives, and offer value-added services to help give you a competitive edge.

    Contact us today to learn more about our products and services, or request a quote to place your order!

  3. Service Entrance Cables

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    Ensuring a reliable and efficient supply of electricity to residential and commercial properties hinges on service entrance cables. This cable is the conduit through which electrical power is transported from the utility pole to the primary electrical panel. It also acts as a protective shield, securing the electrical wiring from external elements, such as extreme temperatures and physical damage.

    This article will explore the importance of service entrance cables, their different types, and their installation process.

    What Are Service Entrance Cables?

    A service entrance cable is the link between the power line provided by the utility company and the main electrical panel. It is typically constructed using aluminum or copper, two highly conductive metals that facilitate efficient electricity transmission.

    Since the cable is often exposed to outdoor conditions, it is engineered to withstand the elements. Therefore, it is usually insulated and jacketed to protect against moisture, sunlight, temperature variations, and physical damage. The insulation and jacketing materials used in its construction also provide a protective barrier, ensuring the longevity and durability of the cable.

    Types of Service Entrance Cables and Their Installation Processes

    Three main types of service entrance cables are commonly used in electrical installations. Here is an overview of each:

    Overhead Service Entrance Cable

    An overhead service entrance cable is intended for installations where the utility lines are suspended above the ground. This cable is typically used in areas where power lines are mounted on poles or other structures. One of its features is its aerial installation, where the cable is suspended from utility poles or other support structures.

    This cable is available in various sizes and configurations to accommodate power requirements and local electrical code regulations. It is typically made of aluminum or copper, both known for their excellent conductivity properties. Nonetheless, the choice of conductor material depends on factors such as electrical load, cost considerations, and local regulations.

    Underground Service Entrance Cable

    An underground service entrance cable is specifically designed for electrical installations where the utility lines are buried underground. It is commonly used in areas where the power lines are routed beneath the surface to provide electricity to residential or commercial buildings. It is also laid in trenches or conduits, ensuring they remain shielded and secured from external elements and accidental damage.

    The use of this cable offers several advantages. First, it eliminates the visual impact of overhead power lines, providing a more aesthetically pleasing environment. Second, it reduces the risk of outages caused by adverse weather conditions, such as high winds, which can affect overhead power lines.

    Combination Service Entrance Cable

    A combination or duplex service entrance cable combines overhead and underground configurations into one assembly. This versatile and customizable cable is intended for overhead-to-underground power line transition properties. It simplifies the installation process and reduces potential points of failure, ensuring an efficient power supply.

    It is important to note that a combination service entrance cable should adhere to local electrical code regulations and specifications. In addition, proper installation techniques should be employed to ensure safe and compliant electrical connections for properties with mixed overhead and underground power lines.

    Choose Classic Wire & Cable for Your Wiring Needs

    At Classic Wire & Cable, we take pride in providing reliable wires and cables of any length to meet our customers’ specific project requirements! We also offer various value-added services to support every project.

    Contact us today for more information! You can also request a quote, and we will gladly get back to you as soon as possible.

  4. Copper to Aluminum Conversion

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    The cost of cables has increased due to the steady rise in copper prices in recent years. As a result, many customers are searching for alternatives to reduce expenses without compromising the quality of their assemblies. Using aluminum conductors instead of copper is one such option.

    Although Copper and Aluminum exhibit some notable contrasts, they also share similarities that make them suitable for comparable uses. Thus, customers can save money on their projects by switching to aluminum conductors.

    At Classic Wire & Cable, we offer a range of aluminum conductors suitable for various applications. Our engineering team can work with customers to select the right cable. We carry THHN, XHHW-2, RHW-2, and USE-2, SER, SEU, URD, MC products, all available in aluminum.

    Using the Ampacity Conversion Chart

    Suppose you are considering switching from copper to aluminum conductors to save money on your electrical project. This can be done using the ampacity conversion chart provided by the National Electric Code (NEC) 310.15(B)(16) 2017.

    The chart lists the ampacity ratings for different sizes of aluminum conductors based on an ambient temperature of 30 °C. The dimensions are listed in AWG or square millimeters, and the ampacity ratings are listed in amperes (A). To use the chart, locate the size of the copper conductor you would normally use and find the corresponding ampacity rating. Then, find the size of the aluminum conductor with a similar ampacity rating.

    Why Aluminum Can Be a Cost-Effective Alternative to Copper

    Weight and Cost Savings

    Aluminum’s lighter weight compared to copper results in substantial savings in transportation and installation costs. Due to its lower density, a larger quantity of aluminum can achieve the same electrical conductivity level while decreasing the overall product weight. Consequently, expenses for shipping and labor during installation are also reduced.

    Conductivity Considerations

    One way to offset aluminum’s lower conductivity is by designing conductors with larger cross-sectional areas. This approach can decrease resistance and enhance conductivity, improving overall performance.

    Corrosion Resistance

    Copper and aluminum are corrosion-resistant metals, making them suitable for usage in tough environmental conditions. Nonetheless, aluminum is better equipped to handle corrosive surroundings due to its ability to create a protective oxide layer upon exposure to the atmosphere. This layer helps to prevent further corrosion, ultimately extending the lifespan of the aluminum conductor.

    Quality Aluminum Building Wire with Classic Wire & Cable

    Classic Wire assists you in leveraging the advantages of utilizing aluminum building wires, particularly as copper prices continue to increase. With the aid of our knowledgeable engineering team, we can help you select the appropriate wire solution that suits your project requirements.

    We provide various  aluminum products tailored to different application needs. Furthermore, our team is dedicated to delivering superior-quality products and expert assistance. Thus, we can guarantee that you can transition to aluminum wires with peace of mind, achieving its cost-saving and performance-boosting benefits.

    Contact us today for more information about our products and services, or request a quote to get started!

  5. SO Portable Cords

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    SO portable cords, or SOOW cords, are a type of power cable designed for use in electrical systems to safely transfer power from one source to another. The “S” in “SO” stands for service. If the “S” is not followed by a “J”, it means that the cord has a voltage rating of 600 volts; however, if there is a “J”, the cord has a voltage rating of 300 volts.

    The “OO” means that the jacket and insulation of the cord are oil-resistant, and the “W” illustrates water and weather resistance. All in all, SOOW and SJOOW portable cords resist oil, water, weather, solvents, abrasion, aging, and ozone. They are also durable, flexible, and flame-retardant. At Classic Wire & Cable, we offer both SOOW and SJOOW portable cords to meet your electrical needs.

    Benefits of SO Portable Cords

    One of the primary benefits of SO cords is their flexibility, making them a popular choice for various electrical power applications. These adaptable cords can be used in both indoor and outdoor environments to suit the needs of applications such as:

    • Temporary lighting and electrical power at construction sites
    • Motors
    • Heavy-duty tools
    • Large appliances
    • Wiring for industrial equipment and machinery

    SO cords feature contrasting plastic or rubber jackets enclosing the conductors. This gives you the freedom to choose the cord that offers the highest level of safety and cost-effectiveness for your project. While SO cables offer a wide range of advantages, it’s important to note that the rubber outer jacket and flexible nature of these cords make them a poor choice for permanent wiring installations, as they could cause conduit jams during wire pulls.

    Classic Wire’s SO Portable Cables

    Classic Wire and Cable offers two types of SO portable wires:

    SOOW Copper 600V

    Our SOOW cables offer resistance to sunlight, water, and weather, making them a great solution for both indoor and outdoor use. These cables can be submerged in shallow water for up to three months at temperatures up to 60°C. Common applications for our SOOW Copper 600V cables include portable tools and equipment, small motors, and associated machinery.

    Classic Wire SJOOW

    With a voltage rating of 300 volts, our SJOOW portable cables are suited for heavy-duty use in damp or dry environments up to 90°C. They are ideal for supplying power to lawnmowers, portable power tools, barbecues, and other outdoor equipment.

    Construction for SOOW and SJOOW Portable Cables

    Both our SOOW and SJOOW portable cables feature flexible thermoset rubber cordage capable of withstanding a wide range of temperatures. Designed to hold up in extreme heat and cold, these cables offer exceptional performance and flexibility.

    The construction of our SOOW and SJOOW portable cords includes:

    • Conductors: Manufactured using flexible stranded Class K through 18 to 10 American Wire Gauge (AWG) conductors to meet ASTM B-174 standards.
    • Insulation: EPDM rubber insulation offers moisture and oil resistance and can withstand temperatures up to 90°C.
    • Assembly: Insulated conductors are cabled with non-wicking wax paper fillers. The assembly is wrapped with tissue-paper separators to ensure easier jacket removal.
    • Jacket: To complete the construction, an oil, moisture, and heat-resistant flexible CPE jacket is extruded over the assembly.

    SO Portable Cords from Classic Wire and Cable

    SO portable cords offer a flexible option for various indoor and outdoor electrical power applications. At Classic Wire & Cable, we’ve been serving electrical distributors with quality aluminum wire and cable solutions for over 200 years. Depending on your particular needs, we offer both SOOW and SJOOW portable cords designed to hold up under harsh conditions.

    For more information about our selection of SO portable cables, contact us today.

    SOOW Copper 600VSOOW Copper 600V [**]

    SJOOW Copper 300VSJOOW Copper 300V [**]

  6. Type MC Armored Cables

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    Also known as metallic sheathed cables, metal-clad (Type MC) armored cables consist of one or more insulated circuit conductors. The cable is usually protected by an aluminum or steel interlocking tape armor, or a smooth aluminum corrugated sheath.

    The aluminum interlocked armor, widely used with Type MC cables, acts as mechanical protection for electrical circuits. With over 200 years of combined experience, Classic Wire & Cable is a trusted supplier of aluminum conductor Type MC armored cables for electrical distributors.

    Uses of Type MC Armored Cables

    Though Type MC and Type AC cables bear a resemblance, the two should not be confused. Type AC cables are manufactured with an internal bonding strip, while Type MC cables have an equipment ground conductor (EGC). Due to these unique features, Type AC cables are not permitted in outdoor environments, specifically in damp areas while Type MC cables are suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.

    However, it’s important to note that you should not install Type MC cables in areas where they are likely to be physically damaged. You must secure and support them at no more than six-foot intervals. Consult Article 330 in the National Electrical Code (NEC) for more information.

    Common applications of Type MC cables include:

    • Service entrance cables
    • Feeders or branch circuits for power and lighting circuits
    • Control cables
    • Flexible, protected whips to HVAC equipment, light fixtures, or other wiring methods and equipment

    Compared to traditional cables, armored cables are more economical because you don’t need to install an electrical conduit then pull the conductors into place. Simply install the armored cable as a complete solution.

    Type MC Aluminum Interlocked Armor XHHW-2 Rated 600V

    At Classic Wire & Cable, we offer Type MC cables with Type XHHW-2 conductors. Type XHHW-2 conductors are commonly used in services, feeders, branch circuits, and raceways (conduit). The conductor insulation is a thermoset cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE), which means that it is more resistant to abrasion and chemicals.

    Type MC Aluminum Interlocked Armor XHHW-2  cables are often used for indoor lighting and branch circuit applications. With a maximum voltage rating of 600V, these cables can also be used in dry or wet locations with a maximum operating temperature of 90°C.

    Type MC Aluminum Interlocked Armor THHN/THWN-2 Rated 600V

    These cables are manufactured with thermoplastic insulated conductors comprised of a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) insulation with a Nylon covering. These conductors are commonly used in control circuits, machine tools, and appliances.

    These cables are flame-retardant and resistant to oil and gasoline. The nylon covering also protects the conductors from abrasion, puncture, or accidental cuts when the armor is removed and the conductors are pulled through a conduit to the device.

    Type MC Aluminum Interlocked Armor THHN/THWN-2 cables are often used for indoor lighting and branch circuit  applications. With a maximum voltage rating of 600V, these cables can also be used in dry or wet locations with a maximum operating temperature of 90°C.

    These types of cables are manufactured, tested and identified in accordance with the following standards:

    • UL 83 Thermoplastic-Insulated Wire and Cable (Type THHN/THWN-2)
    • UL 44 – Thermoset-Insulated Wire and Cable (Type XHHW-2)
    • UL 1569 – Metal-Clad Cables (Type MC)
    • IEEE 1202 – Flame Testing of Cables for Use in Cable Tray, in Industrial and Commercial Occupancies (70,000 BTU/hr)
    • ICEA T-29-520 – Vertical Cable Tray Flame Tests (210,000 BTU/hr)
    • NFPA 70 – National Electric Code
    • ICEA S-95-658 (NEMA WC 70) – Power Cables Rated 2000 Volts or Less for the Distribution of Electrical Energy

    Get Top-Quality Type MC Armored Cables

    Type MC armored cables offer many benefits, from corrosion resistance and flexibility to durability and continuous protection. Moreover, these cables are lighter and more cost-effective than other wiring methods due to their aluminum construction.

    Do you want to purchase or learn more about Type MC armored cables? Contact us today, and we’ll be more than happy to help.