Every time we visit a health care professional or a clinic, we see more and more smartphones and tablets in use. This can give the impression that wireless technology has taken over the medical device industry.
Although that’s the trend these days, many medical devices demand wire and cable-based electrical connections. They’re often the best way to deliver the level of performance needed throughout the equipment’s useful life.
The key to providing that connectivity is soundly engineered wire harnesses and cable assemblies. These are the essential exterior coverings that protect and organize wires and cables by encapsulating them in a single unit.
Clinical settings are tough on portable equipment and related connectors. Staff wind and unwind them while making their rounds. They step on them and roll over them with wheelchairs and gurneys.
They’re also continually sterilizing them between each patient as they move through their tight schedules. Yet, they still expect every electrical connection to perform dependably and flawlessly.
Ensuring the durability of every one of the electrical connections on which your device depends is vital to patient care and to your product’s success. All the time and effort your team has put into building a ground-breaking medical device can be wasted if its connections break down in the field.
Understanding wire harnesses and cable assemblies and where to source them can shield your business from product quality issues. The best place to start is to understand that a wire harness and a cable assembly aren’t the same thing.
In general, a wire harness is a simpler and less robust product than an overmoulded cable assembly. It’s less expensive, and it’s suitable for lighter duty environments.
The cable jacket on a wire harness usually consists of thermoplastic materials such as PVC (polyvinyl chloride), silicone, or polyurethane. If you open up that jacket, you’ll see a set of insulated wires and cables organized together inside it.
On the other hand, engineers design overmoulded cable assemblies with heavy-duty materials that will meet the demands of harsh environments like hectic emergency departments. An overmoulded cable assembly does more than keep its contents organized. It also protects them against water and other environmental hazards.
The outer layer of an overmoulded cable assembly shields its interior connectors, cables and wires from friction, heat, cold, moisture, compression, and other hazards. A typical cable assembly contains materials like PVC, TPE (thermoplastic elastomer), or PE (low-temperature polyethylene).
Overmoulded cable assemblies cost more than their simpler wire harness cousins, but they’re an investment in quality and durability. Regulators and end-users look for those traits in a medical device, making cable assemblies the wiser choice for many medical equipment OEMs.
Kingstec Technologies Inc. is well-known for producing quality wire harnesses and overmoulded cable assemblies for medical devices. These include terminal connectors encapsulated in PVC/PE material.
We can custom tailor your connectors by moulding them at various angles and by incorporating strain relief features. We can even pad print or mould a trademark or logo on the housing to support your brand strategy.
Your wire harness or cable assembly may also need to include a small circuit board as part of the design. We can encapsulate that circuit board in PVC to provide environmental protection, prevent tampering, and improve the component’s overall look and feel. This is one of Kingstec’s specialities and is a unique and difficult process/technique that we have pioneered over the years.
Kingstec is also known for its ability to manufacture more complex wire harnesses that may have multiple terminations, and need wire dressing, organization and protection. Since overmoulding in these applications is small, your investment in the tooling process is cost-effective.
We have a wide range of vertical injection moulding machines at our manufacturing facilities. Our equipment comes in various sizes and capacity, so we can adapt to your needs.
Kingstec is best known in the medical devices industry for wire harnesses and overmoulded cable assemblies. Supported products can include patient monitoring cables, neuromodulation surgery accessory support cables, patient call buttons and other specialized OEM medical devices.
That doesn’t mean that we limit ourselves to the medical field. When you’ve been in business for more than 37 years, clients return with additional projects or refer friends to you from time to time, even friends from other industries.
Kingstec can also support manufacturers in the automotive aftermarket, telecommunications, industrial controls and consumer products industries. Any application where wires and cables need to be organized and protected is in our wheelhouse.
We’d love to hear about your manufacturing requirements for wire harnesses or cable assemblies for electronic devices. If you’d like to look at some product samples or get free, expert advice about your designs, you can get in touch with us using our contact form here.
We look forward to supporting your business goals.