Beating your co-worker Bob in an arm-wrestle? Piece of cake. Hauling a heavy reel jack, maneuvering a 5,000-pound cable reel, keeping the wire reel stable, pulling on time and on budget—and protecting your back, knees, and shoulders at the same time? That’s tricky.
Tough pull? You’re telling me. Looks like you’ve got your work cut out for you. Here are a few challenges contractors face on big cable pulls:
1. Hauling Heavy Reel Jacks
Before you pull cable, someone has to fetch that reel jack. The trouble is, most reel jack stands used for big pulls are extremely weighty and difficult to move. Plus, big cable reels can easily weigh up to 5,000 pounds. (That’s about the size of a small adult elephant.)
Even if you’re training for the Olympic weightlifting team (clearly, you’re a shoo-in), lifting and moving something that heavy on your own is virtually impossible
2. Avoiding Injury
You’re not one to shy away from the kind of hard work that has you wiping your brow after a long day. But this job’s hard enough on your body.
According to OSHA, pulling wire can put considerable stress on the hands, arms, shoulders, and back. Pulling cable is hard enough. The last thing you need is a cable reel that wears you out before you even start pulling.
Even with a few of your strongest guys on the job, lifting and moving a heavy reel jack is a seriously tough task. But heavy lifting isn’t all you have to worry about—it’s also your job to make sure the spindle doesn’t detach and the wire reel stays stable during the pull.
All that extra effort means more labor and greater risk of injury on the job.
3. Managing Costs
When you’re powering through a big cable pull, you’re often working with reels and materials that weren’t made for your specific job. That means paying for more cable than you need, and struggling through assembly and installation.
To add insult to injury, a successful pull often takes as many as four workers to complete. Are you scrambling to find workers to manage pulls?
With all those resources tied up in labor and materials, your Total Cost of Install (TCI) creeps up faster than you can say “Benjamin Franklin.”
Get Smart With Graybar SmartReel
Take a load off. Put your feet up. Relax. With Graybar SmartReel, wire pulls have never been this easy. Graybar SmartReel is a portable payout system that makes it simple and safe for one person to move reels up to 5,000 pounds.
Just wheel it in, lock it tight, and start pulling.
You can use Graybar SmartReel with single- or multi-compartment reels. Plus, it works with any manufacturer’s wire and doesn’t require a separate neutral reel to spin grounding wire. Have a last-minute job change? No problem. The reel is removable, so switching out cable is a cinch.
Reel in even greater labor efficiencies with Graybar’s wire management, paralleling, kitting, staging and storage, and integrated supply services.
Are wire pulls slowing you down? Get smart with Graybar SmartReel.
Over To You
As National Market Manager at Graybar, Todd’s goal is to find the best products and solutions to help contractors work more efficiently, stay safe on the job, and win more productive and profitable business.
Sources & Credits
OSHA: Installation and Repair: Pulling and Feeding Wire