COVID-19 Update

NSPA is open and we plan to remain open for business if our local and state authorities give us the option to do so.  We are dealing with the same disruptions to our normal lives as most of you are (school closings, daycare closings, etc.).  First and foremost, the safety and well-being of our employees and their families will ultimately guide our management team decisions as this pandemic plays out.  We have looked at all our internal processes and will follow CDC recommendations when possible to improve our hygienic routines and daily habits with the goal to ultimately maintain a safe, virus-free work environment.  We have already procured additional hand sanitizer, soaps, gloves and masks and have instituted “wash and clean breaks” which will be mandatory going forward in our operations area.  Starting tomorrow, we also will take the temperature of all employees before they start their shift to ensure sick employees do not infect our healthy workforce.  NSPA is committed to contain this virus and ultimately flatten the curve of its spread.

How can you help?  Just like it does no good to the general population when a few people hoard hand sanitizer so that the rest of the population can’t utilize it; we ask that your orders match your current demand or historical ordering habits.  It is likely that over the coming weeks NSPA will be navigating this unprecedented period with partial staffing at times, please help us make sure that we can meet the needs and demands of ALL of our customers and industries by ordering your normal volumes without adding additional safety stock.  Currently, we do not anticipate any shipping delays or inventory issues; however, we will likely not be able to meet future demand and lead times if some of our customers decide to order outside of their normal ordering habits to stockpile additional inventory.  Also, please be flexible when possible.  NSPA has a very long history of exceeding the expectations of our customers.  We will do everything in our control to do the same during these crazy times.

NSPA’s update on Wuhan Coronavirus (COVID-19)

We are getting several requests from our suppliers inquiring about various issues and impacts regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are a few of their questions and NSPA’s responses:

  1. What steps are you taking to ensure your workforce is safe from the effects of COVID-19?
    • NSPA’s policy has and continues to be, if you are sick … stay home
    • We have communicated that policy to all our employees
    • Additionally, we are asking them to take their temperature prior to coming into work
    • If they have a temperature of 100.4 or greater, they need to stay home and contact their doctor
    • NSPA’s health insurance provides the option to see a doctor or to call a doctor (TelaDoc)
    • We started checking temperatures of our employees before they clock-in on March 17, 2020
    • March 16, 2020, we began cleaning and disinfecting common work areas on an hourly basis
    • We have asked our employees to wash their hands regularly and often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
    • We have also made hand sanitizer more readily available throughout our complex
    • Additionally, we have asked employees to avoid touching their eyes, nose and month without unwashed hands
    • Minimize process and procedures where multiple people handle the same product and equipment
    • NSPA is suspending work related travel for the next three weeks, and will reassess this policy the week of March 30th
    • Employees that need to care for their children due to the school and childcare closing, we are doing our best to allow them to work from home
    • Regarding PTO (personal time off) days, we are allowing our employees to have negative hours/days (allow them to stay home, regardless of how much PTO they have “banked”)
    • NSPA is committed to providing our employees with their regular paycheck so they can pay their normal expenses
    • NSPA doesn’t plan to reduce our workforce or lay anyone off
  1. Have you seen any disruption in supply?
    • NSPA hasn’t experienced any disruptions in our supply chain
    • Currently, we aren’t experiencing any disruptions in our normal day to day business procedures
    • Additionally, we did increase our inventory levels last month from all OUS (outside the US) suppliers
    • Based on our OUS components and finished goods inventory, we have 5-6+ months of core products
    • We haven’t received any disruption notifications from our US and North American suppliers
  1. Do you anticipate any disruption in supply?
    • Unfortunately, this worldwide pandemic is a fluid and ever-changing crisis, so it is not possible for me to answer this question
    • Communication will be the key to ensure that our customers know our current and expected business environment
  1. What actions are you taking to ensure no disruptions in supply?
    • NSPA did increase our inventory levels last month from all OUS (outside the US) suppliers
    • NSPA typically stocks our OUS components between 4-9 months depending on volume, MOQs, and size of containers
    • NSPA has requested our customers continue with their normal POs
    • If all our customers ordered significantly larger orders, it could cause problems with processing orders and eventually inventory issues
    • NSPA is communicating with our suppliers daily and will notify our customers if we see any potential disruptions with our business and products

 

***New*** Long Neck Ring Terminals from National Standard Parts Associates, Inc. (NSPA)

NSPA’s new long neck ring terminals are IDEAL when using heat shrink tubing.  The longer neck and 45° barrel design allows you to have a sealed termination without impeding the stud hole.  The design also allows you to visually inspect that your wires are properly inserted before crimping.

As you can see with the two pictures below, the longer neck design (top) allows for variation of the tubing’s position and placement while still providing sufficient room for the recovered tubing to properly sealed and not impede the stud hole.  Notice that the forty-five degree window allows you to see the stranded copper wire past the crimp area.

KS114-10 Long Ring Installed - cropped jbe

Standard terminal components were never designed to be used with heat shrink tubing and can often times block or obstruct the stud hole opening.  This is illustrated in the picture below.  The tubing is sealed but the tubing will likely impede a flush mount on a terminal block or screw.

KS114-10 Ring Installed - cropped jbe

This is a potential critical flaw when bare part terminals designed for PVC or Nylon are used with heat shrink tubing and stacking or mounting to a terminal block are required.  In the picture below you can see the excess tubing needed to seal the area where the barrel’s throat meets the ring can prevent a flush mount to a block or when stacking terminals.  This ultimately may result in less than optimal contact and potential connectivity issues.  Notice how the tubing interferes with the stacked rings.

KS - Bad Flush

In contrast, NSPA’s new, long-neck terminals stack flush and without any impedance.  Don’t risk electrical failure for your equipment and or vehicles.  Ask your NSPA sales representative for information about our NEW long neck barrel rings and spades.

KS - Good Flush

***New*** Adhesive Clips offered by NSPA

Adhesive Clips

Adhesive Clips come in two sizes.

NSPA’s adhesive clips are designed to provide longitudinal water sealing for small wire bundles.  These clips should only be used in conjunction with adhesive-lined heat shrink tubing.

Installed sample.

Installed sample.

Unfortunately, most adhesive-lined heat shrink tubing is designed to insulate and seal a single wire or cable.  These clips will allow the installer to use standard heat shrink tubing to seal: multiple wires, non-standard wire harnesses, and plug connectors.  These adhesive clips can attach to a single wire or multiple small wires.

Adhesive clip Installation

Adhesive Clips can be added when trying to seal multiple wires.

NSPA adhesive clips come in 2 sizes:  AC-1 (20-12 AWG wires) and AC-2 (16-8 AWG wires).

Click here to download our Adhesive Clip Flyer

NEW… Crystal Clear Sealed Window Butt Connectors

Check out NSPA’s most recent line of Sealed Heat Shrink connectors… OptiSeal.

OptiSeal offers a unique crystal clear opportunity to visually inspect the integrity of your electrical system.

OptiSeal offers a unique crystal clear opportunity to visually inspect the integrity of your electrical system.

OptiSeal offers the following visual assurances:
• Ensures the wire is crimped to connector
• Ensures the center of crimp barrel is properly crimped
• Crystal Clear™ waterproof insulation allows for indisputable inspection of the wire’s condition

OptiSeal Components:

The Crimp Barrel:
• Window in center of connector assures that wire is seated properly and that the wire is being crimped to the connector
• Color-coded stripes identify wire gauge size to be used with connector
• Color-coded stripes also indicate/guide the installer to the proper crimp position on the
center of the barrel
• Seamless barrel butt connectors ensure superior crimp performance
• Wire-stop in butt connectors prevents over insertion of wire

The Adhesive-Lined Heat Shrink Tubing:
• Crystal Clear™ tubing provides optimal clarity for visual inspection
• Adhesive-Lined tubing ensures a waterproof seal
• Wire gauge imprint simplifies wire size identification

OptiSeal compared to a standard heat shrink terminal

A ratcheting crimp tool can help you to protect your heat shrink connector investment!

If you have already made the decision to use heat shrink connectors, you are ahead in the game. However, don’t ruin your investment by using the wrong tool to crimp your connectors. The right tool will have crimp dies especially designed for insulated, heat shrink terminals.  For the most consistent crimp, you should also select a crimp tool with a ratcheting crimp action. This will ensure that regardless of the end-user’s strength or size that the appropriate amount of crimp force will be applied to your crimp every time.  A ratcheting crimp tool will also ensure that you do not OVER CRIMP your connector.  Why is over crimping a connector bad?  (Good question)  When you over crimp your connector you often times actually break some of the copper strands of your wire.  This can cause resistance within your electrical system.  The following tool, T-R-50, is NSPA’s unique offering.

NSPA's T-R-50 Ratcheting Crimp Tool for heat shrink terminals

NSPA’s T-R-50 Ratcheting Crimp Tool for heat shrink terminals

It offers the following features:

  • 4 CRIMP NESTS – 8 AWG-Red • 12-10 AWG-Yellow • 16-14 AWG-Blue • 22-18 AWG-Red
  • Mating Mechanism prevents the jaws from slipping or mis-alignment
  • Long handles make it easier to crimp (less force required)
  • Easy to use & understand release mechanism
  • Ergonomic design to initiate the crimp process

If you have more questions about your heat shrink connectors or tools… check out our website at http://www.nspa.com.

Why you should ONLY use heat shrink terminals.. Part 2

In a previous blog, I touched on how big of a problem corrosion is.  The next reason why you should only use sealed, heat shrink connectors is to help protect against wire pull-out.  Wire pull-out is often found in areas of high vibration or where long periods of strain or pulling on your wires may occur.  Connectors that are exposed to weathering and UV rays can also be susceptible to wire pull-out over time.

Electrical Failure can also occur when constant strain and/or vibration causes a wire within your electrical system to come loose.

Electrical Failure can also occur when constant strain and/or vibration causes a wire within your electrical system to come loose.

By using a heat shrink connector, you add extra tensile strength to your crimp and/or solder termination that a standard, unsealed vinyl or nylon connector does not have.

Troubleshooting electrical failure is EXPENSIVE.  Help prevent costly downtime to your electrical systems by using sealed, heat shrink terminals from NSPA today.

Do it Once, Do it Right!

Why you should ONLY use heat shrink terminals… Part 1

The biggest reason is to help prevent wire corrosion.  Why is this so important?  Well, because corrosion is a BIG problem.  Did you know that in 2002 the U.S. Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) released  the results of their two year study on corrosion and the finding were nothing less than startling.

† From their study… “Results of the study show that the total annual estimated direct cost of corrosion in the U.S. is a staggering $276 billion—approximately 3.1% of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). It reveals that, although corrosion management has improved over the past several decades, the U.S. must find more and better ways to encourage, support, and implement optimal corrosion control practices.”

The direct cost of corrosion in the transportation industry was estimated at $29.7 billion dollars per year.  The breakdown was as follows:

  • Motor vehicles – $23.4 billion – 79%
  • Ships – $2.7 billion – 9%
  • Aircraft – $2.2 billion – 7%
  • HAZMAT transportation – $0.9 billion – 3%
  • Railroad cars – $0.5 billion – 2%
Ugly corrosion can have a devastating effect on your electrical system.

Ugly corrosion can have a devastating effect on your electrical system.

Using a sealed, heat shrink connector is your best defense against the expensive damage corrosion can cause to your electrical system.  Please visit http://www.nspa.com to learn more about our Sealed Electrical System and Heat Shrink Connectors.

† You can find the whole study here.  http://www.nace.org/uploadedFiles/Publications/ccsupp.pdf

Solder vs Crimp connectors… which is a better solution?

Crimp versus Solder.  This age-old question goes back to our first caveman electricians.  Okay, maybe not that for back, but it is a question we hear ALL the time.  There really isn’t a definitive, one answer that fits everyone either.  We like to think of it as a user preference.  Here are some things to think about that will hopefully help you make your decision.

  1. Are you comfortable making a solder connection?  Often times, a “cold” solder joint can lead to electrical failure to do “pull-out”.  Installers must wait for the wire’s strands to heat up to promote good solder flow.  Typically, the bigger the wire, the longer the install time.  A good solder joint will allow the solder to flow in between your wire’s strands for maximum conductivity and strength.
  2. Do you have the right tool to crimp with?  Often times installers will try to crimp a terminal with the wrong tool.  This can damage the connector and can leave your connection at risk for failure.  Over-crimping a terminal can actually break the copper strands of your wires causing unintended resistance and less than optimal current flow.

Whether you choose to crimp or solder… or both… always use a weatherproof, heat shrink connector.  Do it Once, Do it Right!

Image