Connections Blog

Legacy Mil-Spec Cable Specification Changed to Shorten Lead Time

Electric passenger trainIn the current business environment, where various material shortages can sometimes cause increased lead times, sometimes it’s good to challenge the previous/legacy specification for a cable. In this particular instance, Galaxy’s customer had procured 3 different cables from another supplier.  Those cables met specific Mil-Spec requirements, and because of this, it was assumed that there could be no variations for the FEP jacket and PTFE insulation. However, when Galaxy dug a little further with the customer’s engineers, it was discovered that the Mil-Spec was just a legacy from a previous purchase and was not required. The main requirements were that it had to be able to withstand up to 200°C and handle 600 volts for this application in the transportation industry.

The problem with the legacy Mil-Spec cable was that the lead time for the PTFE insulation, which at the time had a lead time that had increased from about 8 weeks to about 18 weeks. That additional 2 ½ months to get the cables with PTFE insulation was going to have a serious negative impact on the customer’s project. So instead of the PTFE insulation, Galaxy suggested that both the jacket and insulation be made with FEP. This new construction was not Mil-Spec compliant, but as was discovered, that was not necessary. And while the new suggested construction was slightly lower in cost, the real reason for the switch was that cable with FEP jacket and insulation was more readily available, with a lead time of about 8 weeks. That shorter lead time worked much better for the customer, who then moved forward with the suggested cables with FEP jacket and FEP insulation.

In last month’s blog post, saving money by downgrading an over-specified cable to an acceptable alternative was the driving force behind the change. In this case, it was the shorter lead time that provided the impetus for the switch. In both cases, Galaxy’s vast expertise as an experienced, innovative wire and cable company helped customers meet their project goals more efficiently. For help with reducing costs while still meeting requirements please contact Galaxy for assistance.