How It Works, Technical & Quality Control
How It Works
Griplock® Grippers are sophisticated in design but simple to use:
- Insert the cable into the plunger and slide the gripper to the desired position. Where it stops it locks®
- To re-adjust, simply depress the plunger with your fingertip and move the gripper to a new position. Release the plunger to lock.
The 3- or 6-ball gripping mechanism is spring-loaded and allows the gripper to move freely up the cable. It cannot move down unless the plunger is depressed.
While there is any weight at all on the gripper, the plunger cannot be depressed. An optional “safety nut” or “safety cap” can be added to completely lock the mechanism in both directions. The Greater The Weight, The Stronger It Grips.
Materials & Finishes
Griplock® Grippers are made of nickel-plated brass with a few exceptions. Internal mechanisms are comprised of brass and stainless steel. Type-50 and Type-80 Grippers are also available in a black zinc finish. Our Retail Display Grippers are finished in satin-chrome. Other finishes are available upon request. Griplock® Keyrings are made of anodized aluminum and come in several colors.
Most Griplock® and Industrial/ZF Grippers have either internal or external threads to attach them to the object being suspended. The following chart contains thread and KO (Knock-Out) size information that may be useful, particularly to our Lighting Industry customers.
About Aircraft Cable
Aircraft Cables, also known as wire ropes, have diameters ranging from 1/32” to 1/4” and are composed of six steel strands wound around a seventh steel stranded core.
This stranded steel core adds strength and crush-resistance to the cable. Aircraft cable is classified by the number of strands in the cable multiplied by the number of wires in each strand. For example, the notation 7x7 indicates that the cable has seven strands made up of seven wires in each strand. Similarly, the notation 7x19 indicates that the cable has seven strands made up of nineteen wires in each strand. The greater the number of wires, the greater the flexibly of the cable. Griplock® Cables are 7x7 or 7x19 galvanized or stainless steel (304 or 316) medium-to-high tensile strength aircraft cable.
NOTE: Aircraft cable was developed, and is still used today, to provide a direct mechanical link between an aircraft’s controls and its crucial and hard-to-reach control functions.
Galvanized & Stainless Steel Aircraft Cable
Galvanized Aircraft Cable (also known as GAC) is composed of wires that, prior to stranding, have been zinc-plated to prevent corrosion. These cables are an effective and economical alternative to stainless steel in mild environments. Griplock®’s standard stainless steel cable is constructed of 304 Stainless Steel. 316 Stainless Steel is also available to add extra corrosion resistance, but it has lower break strength than 304 Stainless Steel cable. Both 304 Stainless Steel and Galvanized Aircraft Cable have approximately the same break strengths.
Cable Sleeves & Terminals
Sleeves and terminals (also known as stop-sleeves, stops, crimps and swages) are molded or crimped to the end of a cable, allowing the cable to be captured by a cable coupler or other non-mechanical holder which attaches the cable to a structure or fixture.
Zinc Die-Cast (ZDC) Terminals are molded to a cable end that has been “bird-caged”, allowing the molten zinc to adhere to each individual wire. This technology has proven itself in the automotive and aviation industries. Griplock® Systems offers a comprehensive range of ZDC terminals.
Swaged Terminals can be made of steel, stainless steel, aluminum or copper and come in a variety of shapes and sizes.
Both types of Griplock® terminal are guaranteed to hold the full published break weight of the cable. U.S. Wire Rope Specifications
NOTE: Griplock® Systems does not recommend field-installing swaged terminals onto cable. Griplock® Systems waives any liability for accidents resulting from field- or non-factory-installed swages and terminals.
Griplock® vs. Griplock® Industrials/Cablefast
Griplock® Grippers are designed and engineered by Griplock®. Produced by technically sophisticated manufacturers under Griplock®’s stringent Quality Control program, the shells and moving parts are machined to three decimal point specifications, assuring 100% reliability of performance. In addition to its own product line, Griplock® is the exclusive distributor in North and Central America and the Caribbean for grippers manufactured by Reutlinger GmbH of Frankfurt, Germany. The Griplock® Gripper line ranges from Micro-Grippers for 1/32” cable to the new Type-120 Grippers for 1/2” cable, and encompasses over 400 different designs.
GRIPLOCK® INDUSTRIAL/CABLEFAST® ZF GRIPPERS are born from our long experience in the cable suspension field. They are U.S designed and are built to Griplock®’s specifications. The product range is limited to the most commonly used grippers in the industry. They are designed and priced to compete in an increasingly budget-driven market, while giving engineers & specifiers more pounds of reliable pull-strength per dollar than any other gripper on the market. This group of grippers is designated by “ZF” at the beginning of their part numbers.
Weight loads for ZF Grippers are lower than for Griplock® Grippers. Please refer to our Weight Load Chart specifically for ZF Grippers.
As all manufacturers and installers know, suspending objects safely over people’s heads is their first and most critical responsibility. At Griplock® Systems Safety is our number one concern. In our eyes each and every gripper is a precision-built machine. Failure is not an option.
Griplock® Grippers: Prior to assembly, all individual Griplock® Gripper components are tested to meet ISO 9001 quality control standards. Before shipping to the U.S., every single assembled unit is inspected. Every production run, whether of existing parts, new designs or design revisions, undergoes its own meticulous testing regimen. Pull Test Equipment
ZF Grippers are built to Griplock®’s specifications and undergo similar Quality Control procedures both at manufacture or upon arrival at our facility. All ZF Grippers are checked 100% and Griplock stands behind every one of them.
All Griplock® and ZF Grippers undergo a second rigorous inspection upon arriving at our U.S. facility. A percentage of every shipment, regardless of the vendor, is pull-tested to destruction and ongoing records of these tests are maintained and reviewed.
Griplock® Cables are proof-loaded at manufacture to 60% of their published break strength. Upon arrival at our facility all cable batches are sampled and several cables out of each batch are pull-tested to destruction. Pull Test Equipment
Our engineers will design and build products to fit your specific application. In all cases of product and application development, line drawings and 3-dimensional interactive models from our SolidWorks drawing program are available.
NOTE: There may be consultation and/or engineering fees in addition to other set-up charges associated with such development.
Any combination of Griplock® products can be pre-assembled, packaged and labeled according to the customer’s specifications. Customers may supply their own parts and instruction material for inclusion in these kits. Pre-packaged kit prices are often lower than the cost of the individual components purchased “a la carte”. SolidWorks drawings of custom kits are available at no charge. For more information contact the Sales Team.
Weight Load Guidelines
Weight Load Guidelines are located below and in the back pages of our catalog. They show minimum break-strengths for Griplock® and ZF Grippers in indoor chemical-free static-load and static-air applications. Only use cable & gripper combinations for which a minimum break-strength has been specified, eg. 1/16” cable with Type-15 Gripper.
Tests on Griplock® Grippers were conducted with medium-to-high tensile strength galvanized aircraft cable (1.0mm-8.0mm) by both the manufacturer and Griplock®. Griplock®’s entire range of products is currently undergoing UL testing. Griplock®’s Conductive Cable System is already UL listed. Weight load figures represent the breakage points in pounds when cables and grippers were pulled from opposite ends by a tension-testing machine under controlled conditions. Please note that WEIGHT LOAD FIGURES FOR ZF GRIPPERS ARE LESS THAN FOR GRIPLOCK® GRIPPERS. PLEASE MAKE SURE TO CONSULT THE APPROPRIATE WEIGHT CHART. Weight charts are not applicable to any other cable gripping product. In addition, even though Griplock® Systems supplies medium-to-high tensile strength cable, it recognizes that its grippers may be used with user-provided lower tensile strength cables, flawed cables, plastic-coated cables or cables of the incorrect diameter or construction. Therefore, Griplock® Systems strongly urges users to read, understand and abide strictly by the Weight Load Guidelines and other published warnings at all times. If in doubt, contact us.
NOTE: Galvanized aircraft cable performs slightly better than stainless steel cable when tested with our grippers. The numbers in the Weight Load Guidelines are deliberately conservative and do not differentiate between galvanized and stainless steel cable.
NOTE: Weight Load Guidelines and other specifications are for illustration purposes only. They should not be construed as a warranty that the product or system will conform. Each purchaser is solely responsible for determining that (1) the product and/or system is suitable for the intended application and (2) that it complies with all federal, state and local safety and trade laws and regulations.