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Splice Quandary

July 12, 2011

Splice Quandary

Q:

My firm’s cable system consists of cable segments with existing hand-taped splices and “Dutchmen” type splices. Describe how your company would inject cables with both these types of splices and the benefits cost savings.

Can you help me with my splice quandary?

A:

You came to the right place. Many circuit owners reflexively think about replacing the entire cable run when a single blocked splice is encountered. Replacement of the entire run is the least capital efficient approach. To understand why this is so, check out my August 31, 2010 post “Of Splices and Prices.”

Dealing directly with splices is definitely the way to go. Novinium is the only rehabilitation supplier that offers three solutions—a good solution, a better solution, and a best solution.

Good

Traditionally, when blocked splices (or splice pairs a.k.a Dutchmen) are encountered they are excavated and replaced. They may be replaced with a molded repair splice, where the repair splice length is great enough to span the gap between the two cable ends, or a pair of regular length molded splices together with a length of stranded and non-strand-blocked cable. Hose clamps are included on the molded splices to provide added hoop strength and improve their pressure holding capability.

Pros Cons
Off-the-shelf molded components. Non-strand-blocked cable required for Dutchmen
Maximum pressure limitation is about 30 psig – only Unsustained Pressure Rejuvenation (UPR) may be utilized
Splice must be molded EPDM rubber
Injection fluid comes in direct contact with splice body: (1) Fluid absorbed into splice body does not improve cable performance; (2) At temperatures above 55°C, the splice body may become distorted and fail; (3) There remains some risk of interfacial contamination from leaks, which may result in tracking and failure. Click here to learn more from “Improving Post-treatment Reliability: Eliminating Fluid-Component Compatibility Issues”
[dt_fancy_image type=”image” image=”http://www.novinium.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/flow-through-splice-2.jpg” style=”2″ width=”600″ padding=”10″ margin_top=”0″ margin_bottom=”0″ margin_left=”0″ margin_right=”0″ align=”center” animation=”none”]Fluid flows around the connector and comes in direct contact with the conductive insert.

Better

Using Novinium’s patented (U.S. Patents 7,615,247,7,195,504, 7,538,274, 7,683,260, and their non-U.S. equivalents) Sustained Pressure Rejuvenation (SPR) process, splices are replaced with almost any kind of splice and the cable is injected from the splice pit in both directions, back to the next cable end.

Pros Cons
Off-the-shelf components of any material may be used Must use SPR process, which means all other splices in the cable segment must be replaced, even if they support flow
SPR injection provides the longest reliable life
Fluid does not contact splice body
Any cable may be used for short segment between Dutchmen
Leak-proof, shrink-back-proof performance
[dt_fancy_image type=”image” image=”http://www.novinium.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/injecting-both-ways-from-splice.jpg” style=”2″ width=”600″ padding=”10″ margin_top=”0″ margin_bottom=”0″ margin_left=”0″ margin_right=”0″ align=”center” animation=”none”]Special adapters fit in your splice… molded, heat-shrink, cold-shrink, whatever!

Best

Combining the “pros” and eliminating all but one “con” of the good and better splice solutions is the Novinium flow-through splice. Shown in the drawing nearby a simple modification of a standard 3M compression connector makes for a flow-through splice without any pressure limitations. With the Novinium flow-through splice the cable can be treated with UPR or SPR methods and there is zero loss of fluid to the component.

Pros Cons
Off-the-shelf molded or shrink-to-fit components of any material may be used Non-strand-blocked cable required for Dutchmen.
Either SPR injection, which provides the longest reliable life, or UPR injection, which allows flow through some existing splices may be utilized
Fluid does not contact splice body
[dt_fancy_image type=”image” image=”http://www.novinium.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/No.1-Inline-Alum.-Splice-Conn.-Flow-Through-before-installation.jpg” style=”2″ width=”600″ padding=”10″ margin_top=”0″ margin_bottom=”0″ margin_left=”0″ margin_right=”0″ align=”center” animation=”none”]A stainless steel tube runs the length of the compression connector. The tube is much stronger than the copper or aluminum connector and does not crush with swaging or crimping. A flow path is maintained between two leak-proof injection adapters.

Benefits and Savings

Novinium is the only firm with all three of these tools in its toolbox. I’m reminded of Maslow’s hammer, popularly phrased: “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” If Novinium had only the “Good” approach, the circuit owner would have to accept the “Cons” associated with that approach. Instead, Novinium chooses the right tool for any circumstance—the tool that minimizes the time required to inject (i.e. saving money) and maximizes the post-injection reliability.