Cable Flex Test

August 26, 2021
Cable Flex Test is one of BKSTEC’s fiber optic cable quality control procedures. As one of the last tests before production, this checks for loose solders in the header and any copper or fiber optic strands that might snap during regular use.

Cables go through a lot of abuse without customers realizing that they may have been damaged, as the parts are not usually visible. The solder in the header may come loose, and the copper or fiber optic may have snapped when passing the cable through walls or connected in tight spots. Oftentimes the sleeving and housing of a cable may look fine, but the fragile components inside may be damaged.

Customers may find themselves troubleshooting other parts of the system before realizing that the culprit is the cable. To give customers peace of mind, BKSTEC undergoes cable flex test optional during the development process.

Damaged cables can lead to signal transmission errors or failure.

Cable Flex Test Step by Step

  1. Samples are randomly selected.
  2. The connector head of the cable is then fixed on the machine.
  3. A 227g weight is tied to the other end of the cable, at approximately 15cm (Table stand machine) / 40cm (SE Modal 5900) down from the head, to make sure the cable is straight all the way down.
  4. The test machine is then set to a swing angle of about 90°, and at a speed of 15 cycles/min (1 cycle = rocking the header back and forth).
  5. The test runs for 200 cycles.
  6. Cables are sent for signal quality testing.
  7. Cable flex test is performed again until 3,000 cycles have been completed.
Table stand cable flex Test machine

Bad soldering and damaged fiber optic are the most common cable failure points. Any cable that fails the bending test and signals quality test is sent to our quality assurance team for further testing and analysis. 

After revising the manufacturing procedure and/or design of the cable, new samples are produced and passed through the same testing conditions until all the samples pass, ensuring that each user receives a trustable cable that is designed and manufactured in accordance with our high-quality standards.

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