Category Archives: Meridian News

How 3D Printing is Changing the World of Cable Assemblies And Wire Harnesses

You have probably heard a good deal about 3D printing and how it is taking production industries by storm. However, the technological advances in 3D printing have started to play a significant role in the production of cable assemblies and wire harnesses. Here at Meridian Cable, we have greatly benefitted by utilizing the advancing technology of a 3D printing wire harness.

The remarkable tech for 3D printing wire harness affords excellent opportunities for rapid prototyping and a more efficient overall production timeline. But how exactly is 3D printing beneficial to Meridian Cable’s production? What tech does Meridian use, and what can 3D printers make? Plug in and power up as we explore all about 3D printing wire harnesses and other components. 

Getting Plugged in: What is 3D Printing?

First things first, let us define what 3D printing is. 3D printing is a modern wonder of innovation. A 3D printer is able to construct a component, shell, form, shape, or object from a single machine. Using a computer-aided design (CAD), 3D printers build a three-dimensional object by layering pliable material. They are typically used to create objects out of plastics or other moldable materials. A single dispenser flows back and forth across the printing field to deposit and layer the building material. 

3D printing technology has exploded over the last several years, resulting in a surge of applications for the craft. Because there is so much opportunity to build and create practically anything via 3D printing, it is no wonder that production industries are catching on to its possibilities. 

What Can 3D Printers Build? 

There are numerous examples of what 3D printers can create. The truth is, the list could be pretty nearly infinite. Everything from car parts to cell phone cases can be manufactured by utilizing 3D printing technology. This versatile technology presents a whole world of possibilities. 

In relation to 3D printing wire harness components and other related elements, 3D printing can be used to efficiently create high-quality elements. Some of the items that we have used 3D printing for are:

  • Molds for building wire harness components
  • Housings for cable assembly connectors
  • Fixtures
  • Connector shells
  • Many more components

The versatility that 3D printing offers allow us to build a wide variety of components. 

Benefits of 3D Printing Wire Harness Components

With the advancement of three-dimensional printing comes incredible innovation in how we are able to engineer our components. There are several key benefits that have presented themselves to us as one of the leading cable assembly and wire harness manufacturers in the world. 

A few of the most noteworthy benefits of 3D printing wire harness components are:

  • Cost: The cost of 3D printing is often much less than using other methods. This enables manufacturers to create quality components that cost less for both the business and the customers. 
  • Flexible Customization: 3D printing wire harness housings and other components offer incredible flexibility in what we can create. Let’s be honest; we are all about customization and building exactly what you need. 3D printing provides an astonishing potential for creating customized components. The possibilities for customization are nearly limitless because of 3D printing. 
  • Lightweight components: 3D printed parts (such as housing and fixtures) often means these components are more lightweight than other manufacturing methods. By using plastic or light moldable resin, the finished product is much more lightweight and easy to manage. 
  • Simplified production: Another great benefit of 3D printing is that production is more streamlined for wire harness parts. Because 3D printed components only require one machine to build, they are a much more efficient way of crafting the more minor elements to cable assemblies and wire harnesses. This simplified manufacturing is ideal for creating unique wire harnesses and cable assembly components. 
  • Speedy prototyping: A key bonus to 3D printing is that it enables us to create prototypes for our clients more rapidly than other manufacturing methods. This expediency means that once the design phase is completed by our on-site engineers, the prototype for your wire harness or cable assembly can be completed and tested as soon as possible.

    By fast-tracking, the production of the prototypes for wire harness components, the overall production, testing, and inspection phase moves much more rapidly. 
  • Faster production times: When the prototyping phase moves more quickly, the overall production time can be much faster. As the 3D printed components will be used in the final product, the production for the entire order can be handled expediently. 
  • Ease of reproducing future orders: Once the production of your custom wire harness is complete, it can be easily replicated from the 3D printing files for your order. This means that we can recreate an order for custom cable assemblies and wire harnesses with ease. 

And those benefits are just the tip of the iceberg. As 3D printing technology progresses, it will continue to shape the way Meridian Cable crafts custom cable assemblies and wire harnesses. Though the world is far from fully embracing the possibilities that 3D printing has to offer, we are proud to be on the cutting edge. We fully intend to continue to develop the potential of how 3D printing wire harness components can change the world of production. 

The 3D Printers that Meridian Uses for Prototyping and Production

Over the last several decades, Meridian Cable has been at the forefront of innovation in production and cable manufacturing. The 3D printers that we use are among the most precise printers available. We take pride in the tech that we use to build cable assemblies and wire harnesses. We use three different types of 3D printers, giving us a more diverse range of components and parts that we are able to print. 

The three printers that we use are:

  • Form 1 3D Printer
    The Form 1 printer uses stereolithography to print. This process involves exposing the resin to ultraviolet lights to harden. This process works because the ultraviolet laser hits the liquid resin, which causes the resin to solidify. The printing stage raises and lowers in order to expose the liquid resin to the laser, and the process repeats until the component is completed.

    Powered by specialized software, the Form 1 3D printer is capable of building finely detailed parts and wire harness components. Featuring an auto-rotation, manual maneuverability of parts, and a printing floor view, the Form 1 printer is a truly marvelous piece of equipment. 
  • Form 2 3D Printer
    The second printer that we use here at Meridian is the Form 2 printer. This innovative printer allows us to use up to 20 different materials to build components. This function is easily performed and makes the Form 2 Printer ideal for more complex builds. Once the resin is changed, the Form 2 automatically adjusts to operating correctly while using the new material. This adaptability comes in handy when 3D printing wire harness components that require alternative materials.

Working similarly to the Form 1 printer, the Form 2 functions by using a laser to harden the liquid resin. The benefits of the Form 2 are that it is capable of printing incredibly complex parts and works intuitively with the design software to build components layer by layer. Our Form 2 printer features a large viewing screen to watch the progress of the wire harness components.

  • Fuse 1 3D Printer
    Rounding off the printers we use for 3D printing wire harness parts is the Fuse 1. The Fuse 1 is a powerful printer designed for industrial 3D printing. Designed to be the ideal combination of speed and accuracy, the Fuse 1 printer enables us to create highly complex parts in record time. This ability means that we are able to produce prototypes and final components in unbelievably fast timeframes. Our Fuse 1 is an incredible asset to our 3D printing wire harness parts.

    The Fuse 1 printer operates a little differently than the Form series in that it utilizes SLS printing. SLS printing refers to Selective Laser Sintering, which is a specific process for 3D printing. The SLS process involves coating the printing bed with a powder form and then solidifying the powder with a laser. The printing bed is recoated, and the laser coagulates the next layer of powder on top of the previous one. This process is repeated over and over until the construction is complete.

    Once the printing is complete, we remove the excess powder, and the product is ready to combine with the other components.

    The Fuse 1 Printer that Meridian uses offers unique features for a 3D printer, such as low waste and industrial-strength materials. The lower waste means that more of the resin is put to use to create the part that we are printing. This feature is both environmentally conscious and economical. 

Think Meridian Cable for Your Next Project

As a leader in using innovative technology to build cable assemblies, wire harnesses, and more, Meridian Cable is here to help with your next custom project. Contact us today to utilize our innovation in 3D printing wire harness components. 

Picking the Right Wiring System

Wire Harness Basics: Picking the Right Wiring System

Picking the correct wiring system for your product is an absolute must.

Choosing the wrong kind of Wiring System —one that’s not designed to handle the product’s noted electrical load, for instance—can lead to a commercial setback, as both you and the main manufacturer will have to scramble and waste production time trying to find a wiring system that fits the product’s electrical needs. Instead, it’s important to take your time, and to do your research thoroughly regarding your wiring needs before you pick out a system. Here are a few points to remember when Picking the Right Wiring System.

Wire Harness
Wire Harness

Picking the Right Wiring System

The Wire Harness Electrical Load

When choosing a wiring system, it’s important to understand your product’s voltage need. Wiring systems are specifically designed to handle certain voltage loads. Wires with a smaller wire diameter, for instance, are intended for lower voltage levels. While smaller wires might be more aesthetically pleasing, they aren’t designed to handle higher loads effectively: this can result in product failure, or worst-case scenario, the wires may seriously malfunction, creating a regrettable safety issue.

Wire Harness Safety

Wire systems have one main function: to transport electricity from a power source to a given product safely and effectively. The key word there is safely—if a wire system can’t handle a load properly, and a shortage occurs, this can potentially result in damages to the product, ranging from electrical- or fire-based damages. Or a faulty wiring system may result in physical harm to a user. Electrical fires and electrocution are extremely serious, so it’s critical that you choose a wiring system that’s designed to prevent these hazards from occurring.

Wire Harness Durability

Wiring systems need to be built to last. In short, a wiring system should be able to transfer a full-load of power without overheating. It also needs to maintain that efficient transfer rate for a substantial period of time. A wiring system basically needs to be able to function at top efficiency for years. If a manufacturer uses cheap materials to create the physical wiring and the sheathing, then the wiring system, while inexpensive, probably won’t last very long. Cheap wiring systems will have to be replaced constantly, and if a critical power failure occurs, the resulting short may cause physical harm to both the product and the user. In other words, when choosing a wiring system, go for the systems that can stand up to a little abuse.

Wire Harness Appearance

While safety and durability are more important in the long-run than appearance, it’s also critical to keep a wiring system’s aesthetic appeal in mind too. While you should choose a system that will guarantee overall product efficiency, it’s also a good idea to pick a system that matches the general design scheme of the given product. A sleek or minimalist-inspired product, for instance, probably won’t fit design-wise with a clunky wiring system.

The Cost of Wire Harnesses

When choosing components for a product, it’s vital to keep pricing in mind. For instance, you should look for a wiring system that strikes a balance between effectiveness and cost. You need a wiring system that won’t break your bank, so to speak, but it also shouldn’t be cheap or shoddy. Inexpensive wiring systems might be cheap for a reason: these systems often compromise safety or durability in order to hit that low price. Be open to spending a bit more to find that ideal system, but remember, you don’t have to pay exorbitant prices to find the best wiring system.

Your Wire Harness Design

In a perfect world, you should pick a wiring system that can be modified or upgraded to meet your production needs. If the system needs to be altered slightly in some way to accommodate your product’s specifications, it should be designed in a way that allows minor alterations without compromising the system’s effectiveness.

Choosing a wiring system takes a bit of work. However, if you keep the aforementioned points in mind—and you make sure to do your research beforehand—you’ll be able to find a system that properly meets your production needs.

 

Wire Harnesses Design & Manufacturing

Wire Harnesses Design and Manufacturing

The wire harness is an extremely important aspect of modern life, although many people would never know that. Hidden safely out of sight, behind walls or within electrical boxes, these simple pieces of electrical equipment protect all of us from electrical issues and help engineers supply the right kind of power and information to the right kind of places. Without the wire harness, our world would be more dangerous, and electricians would be spending hours trying to figure out electrical wiring. Since these products are incredibly important, it’s a good idea to understand Wire Harness Design and Manufacturing techniques, from the conception to the final product. Here’s how a wire harness goes from an idea to an actual product in a home/business.

Wire Harness Design

Wire harnesses are made for specific purposes and, like all great designs, they are created to solve a spWire harnessecific problem. In the case of wire assemblies, the two main problems that they solve are geometric and electrical. Geometrically, a Wire Harness Design must fit inside of a specific space, whether it’s alongside an airplane engine or inside a much larger network of electrical wiring. The second problem is, more obviously, electrical. Wire harnesses, at their very core, are used to keep wires together and protected, so they must meet specific guidelines that ensure the wires are protected from both outside damage and internal electrical issues. With these two ideas in mind, the designers set out to create a specific solution.

Usually, wire harnesses are much more specific than people know, being designed along with a larger item. In the case of vehicles, wire harness designers are often faced with a very specific amount of room in which they can house their product, and that means making something designed for that specific model of vehicle. In other instances, such as wire assemblies used in residential or commercial buildings, geometry is often considered second compared to electrical safety, which is paramount. In both instances, however, the design is often created around specific situations so that the best product possible can be made available. At Meridian Cable, we have designed different wire harnesses for all kinds of scenarios, which means we have an inventory of design knowledge that can be easily integrated into almost any new projects and products.

Wire Harness Manufacturing

Once the designers have created a wire harness that meets all of the right specifications, it goes through multiple safety checks and is then sent to the manufacturer. Depending on the relationship, the manufacturer may be part of the same company as the designer, or it may be an entirely different outfit that has the resources necessary to create the proposed wire harness. Either way, the product moves from the theoretical to the actual, and through that process, many changes can occur. Manufacturers typically have a relationship with the designers, they aren’t simply given blueprints and expected to create the exact thing.

Design and manufacturing are essential aspects of creating the perfect wire harness, with each providing necessary insight into creating exactly what the client needs. At Meridian Cable, we pride ourselves on designing and manufacturing a wide array of wire harnesses to meet almost any of your needs.

Wire Harness Design and Manufacturing

Meridian Cable Assemblies Grows

Meridian Cable Assemblies Grows — Welcome Jennifer!

Meridian Cable Assemblies Grows

Meridian Cable is happy to announce Jennifer Tate has joined our sales team as an Inside Sales Representative.

Meridian Cable Assemblies
Meridian Cable Assemblies

Jennifer will assist one of our Strategic Sales Representative in managing the needs of our customers, coordinating information between our customers and manufacturing and also helping the marketing team on special projects. We are beyond excited to have Jennifer as Meridian Cable Assemblies Grows Again! Jennifer comes to Meridian with lots of experience with customers. For many years Jennifer ran a dental office and dealt directly with customers. In her prior role she worked with patients, dentists and insurance companies making sure the whole operation ran smoothly. Meridian has aggressive growth planned and recently opened a wire harness and cable assembly manufacturing facility in St. Augustine, Florida. Jennifer will assist the Strategic Sales Representative in acquiring new business for this facility, and will also help transfer some cable manufacturing from our China factory to our U.S. factory.   Jennifer and her husband have two girls and spend lots of time watching their many activities. She grew up in Virginia and has lived in Northeast Florida for 10 years. The family loves time at the beach and helping her community through fellowship at her church.

About Meridian Cable Assemblies

Meridian has more than 5,000 existing tools for cable assemblies, including — connectors, junctions, overmolds and housings. All these components allow us to manufacture across industries. From automotive to film and military to industrial controls, we do it all!

Our qualified design team can assist in a moment’s notice, on every aspect of your product development.

Rare is the product that goes from concept to millions without steps in between. We expect to do prototypes as part of all of our design projects and have the capability to prepare small lots for either approval or concept verification.

Industrial Engineers Help Meridian Cable Maintain Constant Quality

Industrial Engineers help Meridian Cable

Industrial Engineers Help Meridian Cable Maintain Constant Quality

Meridian Cable Assemblies

Meridian Cable Assemblies

Industrial Engineers help Meridian Cable with some of our key tasks, having quality engineers in-house allow us to design and manufacture the products are customers require. We recently welcomed Mike Zheng to the team as a Manufacturing Engineer in its northern Florida cable assembly manufacturing facility. In his new role with Meridian, Mike will assist with factory set up, both assessing manufacturing equipment and factory design. As Mike works to bring the new factory online later this year, he will be engaged in equipment purchase, installation and calibration. Once the equipment is up and running, then he will also help train employees on the proper use of the cable assembly machines.

Post launch Mike will settle into his role assisting customers with custom design of their cable assemblies. Mike is excited to learn all about the new equipment and processes in the production facility and looks forward to the challenges his work at Meridian will offer.

Mike brings to this position previous experience acquired during his tenure with the U.S. military as a combat engineer. Prior to his military service, Mike earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering through Tennessee Technological University (TTU) in Cookeville, Tennessee.

After office hours, Mike enjoys outdoor activities around St. Augustine, such as lake fishing and kayaking or on the more daring side, skydiving.

Meridian Cable Assemblies
Meridian Cable Assemblies

Our on-staff industrial design engineers and sourcing capabilities allows us to maintain our status among elite manufacturers domestic and internationally. We own our Chinese facility and have direct daily communication. Maore importantly we control the quality, process, and procedures amongst all our facilities. Allowing our industrial engineers the freedom to explore creative and innovative possibilities.

Our Industrial Engineers help Meridian Cable extrude our own cable so we can alter specifications based on customer need. Building our cable assemblies custom down to the first strand of copper.

Meridian Cable Gears Up for U.S. Production as a USA Cable Manufacturer

USA Cable Manufacturer

Meridian Cable • USA Cable Manufacturer

Meridian Cable is proud to be a USA Cable Manufacturer. We also welcomed Leslie Roland to our Florida-based operations. Leslie is responsible for sourcing and logistics for the company’s north Florida warehouse and cable assembly manufacturing plant. This includes supervising and managing personnel in the facilities. As the company prepares to open its first U.S.-based cable assembly production factory, she is assisting with the sourcing and acquisition of parts and machinery for it.

USA Cable Manufacturer
USA Cable Manufacturer

A seasoned Navy veteran, Leslie joined Meridian last fall in a part-time capacity as warehouse manager. Recently as Meridian began to outfit the new plant, she took on her new full-time position. During her Navy career, Leslie worked in administrative posts, supporting U.S. Naval Air operations around the world. Her favorite billet was Hawaii. Leslie lives with her family in St. Augustine, where in her free time, she loves to hang out with her two children.

We excel at product start up, from qualification samples to prototype runs to full pre-production testing and finally volume manufacturing.

USA Manufacturing Locations

As of 2014 we’re back in the U.S. and re-opened our manufacturing facility in St. Augustine, FL.

Meridian Cable Team Announcement

Meridian Cable Announcement — We Have Expanded!

Meridian Cable Announcement

Meridian Cable Assemblies
Meridian Cable Assemblies

Meridian Cable is growing. The company recently welcomed Joyce Hege to the team as Inside Sales Representative. In her new role, Joyce provides support to the sales team and manages customer accounts. She brings 25 years of sales experience in the electronic components sector to Meridian Cable. Her familiarity with coil cords, cable assemblies, wires and connectors will give her invaluable insight when working with customers to assess their custom cable assembly requirements.

Before joining Meridian Cable, Joyce held a sales position with a distributor of electronic components, cable and wire. She’s excited to be working for a manufacturer again, because it affords her the opportunity to focus on a single product line of custom cable assemblies.

Away from the office, Joyce can often be found in her kitchen sharing her passion for cooking with her family. She loves to explore different cuisines and unfamiliar ingredients.

Meridian Cable Assemblies
Meridian Cable Assemblies

About Us — Meridian Cable

Meridian Cable has been designing and manufacturing cable assemblies across many industries for over 25 years. We have built components for broadcasting and telecommunications, retail security, and industrial controls. Custom solutions our what we thrive in—in fact, more than 70% of the products we produce, we design — in house.