Category Archive: Cable & Wiring Harnesses

Where are Wiring Harnesses and Cable Assemblies Used?

Wherever there is a complex electrical system, there is likely also a wire harness or cable assembly. Sometimes called cable harnesses or wiring assemblies, these units serve to organize, consolidate, and protect electrical conductors. Since wire harnesses are custom designed for their application, they can dramatically improve a system’s efficiency.

Wiring Harnesses

What is a Wiring Harness?

Simply, a wire harness is a bundle of cables and wires, plus the components used to sheathe, support, and organize them. These elements include tapes, sleeves, and ties, which keep cables in the optimum position for transmission. Wire harnesses are designed based on the electrical and geometrical requirements of the application and are used to simplify the connection to larger components.

What are Wiring Harnesses and Cable Assemblies Used For?

Wiring harnesses solve many challenges associated with electrical systems. By combining many individual wiring elements, they make it easier to connect and assemble complex systems. At the same time, they provide additional protection to wires and cables, preventing unwanted flexion and insulating bundles against the environment.

This combination of benefits means that wiring harnesses and cable assemblies are used across diverse applications. Most manufacturers find that combining electrical elements in a harness is a cost-effective way to improve performance while also simplifying installation. Uses can be found in industries ranging from aerospace to residential wiring.


Aerospace equipment often includes dense bundles of electrical and communication cables. Wire harnesses enable power transmission in aircraft engines, data transmission from satellites, and similar aerospace applications.


The automotive industry makes extensive use of wiring harnesses and cable assemblies, including in both gasoline and electrical vehicles. In these contexts, harnesses are indispensable for saving space and ensuring wires fit around mechanical components. Organizing conductors is also essential for keeping distinct systems separate under the hood, enabling both efficient operation and easy maintenance. Automotive systems using harnesses include lights, turn signals, displays, and more.


In the hospital, clinicians must be able to quickly establish reliable connections. In many cases, this is a matter of life and death, such as when setting up critical care equipment. Harnesses enable these rapid links, keeping patients safe. Other medical applications include more permanent installations such as imaging equipment and dental chairs.


Telecommunications systems may include anywhere from tens to thousands of cables, all of which must be organized to save space and facilitate identification. Assemblies serve this role, bundling cables for modems, routers, and similar communication equipment.

Information Technology

Within IT, harnesses are used at every scale. Wire harnesses and cable assemblies save space within small laptops and organize the thousands of cables within a networking facility.


Safe and efficient wiring powers residential and commercial buildings alike. Construction personnel rely on harnesses to insulate and organize electrical wiring in compliance with all relevant codes.


In a manufacturing environment, stray wires represent a significant safety hazard. At the same time, many machines include extensive wiring, including CNC units, 3D printers, and conventional workstations. Harnesses keep facilities safe by containing wiring and ensuring connections are reliable.

Robotics and Automation

Robots of all sizes require organized and durable wiring to function properly. Often, space is limited, so harnesses are needed to route and contain circuits.

Benefits of Wiring Harnesses and Cable Assemblies

The advantages of wiring harnesses and cable assemblies have made them nearly ubiquitous. Key benefits include:

  • Decreased Installation Time: Assemblies group cables sensibly, speeding installation for large or complex systems. This organization makes it easier to identify and locate the appropriate components.
  • Safety: Harnesses can incorporate structural supports, insulation, and shielding to protect against dangerous shorts. Harnesses also keep wires contained to avoid accidents in the workplace.

When working with wires and cables, it is nearly impossible to achieve the same efficiency without a well-designed harness or assembly.

Choose Conwire for Wiring Harnesses and Cable Assemblies

Conwire has offered cost-effective, streamlined wire and cable solutions for over 100 years. We have crafted harnesses for virtually every industry, tackling unique requirements and challenges with each project. As an ISO 9001:2015-certified manufacturer, we work with the highest-quality materials and adhere to the most rigorous quality standards. Whatever the application, you can trust our solutions will maintain excellent performance across their long working lives.

To learn how we can apply our expertise to your next project, contact us or request a quote today.

The Return of Willy the Wire

Our customer favorite Willy the Wire has returned in this exciting video to provide more insight into the inner workings of Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable. In this adventure, Willy takes us on an enlightening tour through our facility, where he provides fascinating insights into our custom capabilities. He also walks viewers through each step of our project process for a fascinating overview of our internal operations and project processes.

Our Custom Capabilities

Welcome to Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable, where our teams of seasoned experts provide an extensive range of wire and cable products. We are pleased to offer services ranging from simple wire cutting and stripping to total custom solutions. Our dedicated personnel work hard to produce everything from complicated custom wire harnesses to simple custom cables for customers in a range of industries. We are also pleased to offer custom power cords for a variety of applications. 

While our team makes it look easy, these complicated custom arrays require a great deal of attention to detail. We can create wire assemblies in an array of lengths and thicknesses to ensure your wiring works as intended while still fitting into a variety of housings. Custom color coatings are available so your employees and repair technicians can identify wires within the assembly for faster, safer repairs. In fact, to make your product assembly as easy as possible, we are pleased to design and manufacture custom assemblies with special features to streamline assembly. 

At Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable, we pride ourselves on offering custom wire and cable solutions that meet our customers’ most critical needs. We take the time to thoroughly understand the needs of your product, so you can rest assured that your custom cable and wiring assembly will provide optimal product performance.

The Project Process

Willy takes the time to walk our customers through the project process at Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable. The process is designed to be as easy as possible for our customers from beginning to end:

  1. First, our sales team will discuss your project with you. They will gather the details and specifications and send them to our production team. 
  2. Our production team reviews your project specifications in full and creates a detailed quote for your custom wire or cable solution. 
  3. Once your quote is complete, our production team sends it back to the sales team, who sends it back to you for review. 
  4. You have the opportunity to review the quote, ask questions, and make any changes. Once you have approved the quote, you simply advise our sales representative and fill out a New Customer Form with your contact and business information. 
  5. The Consolidated Electronic team takes it from there! We work to create a custom wire or cable array to meet your project specifications. 
  6. Once production is complete, we conduct a thorough quality assurance check before packaging and shipping your completed array directly to you.

Our goal is to ensure that your entire customer experience is smooth and streamlined, with simplified processes and open communication throughout your project.

Partner With Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable for Your Next Custom Project!

Whether you need complex custom wire harnesses or a simple cable array, Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable has the right solution for you. With more than a century of experience, our custom capabilities are second to none in the industry. To learn more about our wiring solutions and project processes, contact our experts today or request a quote.

Cables for Cryptocurrency Applications

Cryptocurrency refers to digital money that is based on blockchain technology, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. It is secured by cryptography and issued by decentralized networks, which make it hard to counterfeit and immune to government manipulation. Over the years, this type of currency has significantly risen in popularity, leading to more and more people getting involved in its mining. 

Given the increasingly high number of computer calculations needed to mine cryptocurrency, the mining process generally necessitates the use of high-speed data processing centers. Cables and wires play an essential role in the operations of these facilities.

The Role of Cables in Data Processing Centers

A key component of data processing centers is cable systems. These systems make up and connect the networks that allow transmissions, such as cryptocurrency transactions, to be made. 

The rise in cryptocurrency mining has created many new challenges for data processing centers. Since miners often need to go through millions of combinations to discover cryptocurrency, they require high-speed systems that have the power to perform the necessary calculations. As a result, data processing centers must develop and adopt new technologies, such as better cabling systems, to meet these increasing demands. 

Types of Cables in Use 

cryptocurrency equipment mining

The design of cable systems can be structured or unstructured depending on the needs of the data processing center. Structured cabling designs are based on predefined standards that dictate the connection points and pathways, while unstructured cabling designs have connection points and pathways that are not based on predefined standards. 

The cabling itself can also vary. Two of the most commonly used are copper cables and fiberoptic cables. The former is used for its low cost and power usage and high transfer rate and reliability, while the latter is used for its smaller footprint and greater transmission coverage. 

Data processing centers used for cryptocurrency mining require cable systems that are reliable and flexible. The cables must be able to transmit data at high rates consistently. Otherwise, the entire network can go down, potentially costing the facility a significant amount of time and money. Other features that may be critical to a data processing center include portability, grounding ability, and stability. 

Types of cable systems used in data processing centers include: 

  • Cable assemblies. Cable assemblies are collections of wires or cables that are enclosed within durable outer sheaths. The sheath protects the wires and cables from extreme environmental conditions that could damage them. 
  • Wire harnesses. Wire harnesses are wires or cables or a collection of wires and cables that are enclosed within lightweight sheaths. While the sheath provides some protection to the wires and cables, it is primarily used to keep them organized. As such, these cable systems are best used in indoor environments where exposure to harsh conditions is not likely.
  • Power cords. Power cords are designed to transmit power from the source to connected equipment. 

Custom Cable Solutions From Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable

Need cables and wires for your cryptocurrency mining operations? Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable is here to help. We’ve provided high-quality custom cable and wire solutions for over a century, which gives us the knowledge and skills to meet virtually any wire and cable need. To learn more about our custom cable and wire solutions, browse our Custom Cable Guide or contact us today.

How Consolidated Powers Cities

Without wire and cable, cities around the world would go dark and quiet. People would be unable to travel, do their jobs, or enjoy recreational activities. This is as true in Chicago as it is anywhere else, and Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable is proud to help keep the city running.

What Makes a City?

Custom wire harnesses and a variety of other wire and cable solutions power entire cities. Without them, we wouldn’t have the light and electricity that get us through the day in so many ways. Cities depend on wire and cable for the following systems:

  • City Power Grid. Wire and cable keep the power flowing for overhead and underground power lines, commercial and residential HVAC systems, electricity and lighting, and alternative and renewable energy sources.
  • Public Transportation. The L connects more than 140 stations in Chicago and the suburbs, but wire and cable on this and other public transportation systems do more than get you from Point A to Point B. Advertising and informational displays (both in the vehicle and in the stations), seat-back televisions, navigation and PA systems, and lighting all rely on wires, as do the doors and engines on many buses, shuttles, and trains. Thanks to the wires that power the pay terminals, you can purchase tickets faster and more efficiently.
  • Chicago Navy Pier. As one of Chicago’s top attractions, a variety of wires and cables are required to keep the shops, restaurants, hotels, rides, and pier lighting up and running. Without wire, there wouldn’t be as much here for visitors to enjoy. When an area attraction runs smoothly and allows for a positive experience, it brings visitors to town, which helps the local economy.

Custom Power Solutions


Consolidated’s extensive capabilities allow us to create custom wire and cable solutions to power cities large and small. Solutions that are designed to meet a specific need last longer and perform better than a standard solution that can’t accommodate your unique situation.

Our custom cables can be designed according to your required operating temperature, flexibility, electrical properties, industry standards, and more. Our product offerings include:

  • Cable and Wire Harnesses. With a variety of materials, cable and wire harness customization options are nearly endless for a variety of industries, including automotive, aerospace, telecommunications, medical, construction, industrial, and more.
  • Custom Power Cords and Retractile Cords. Our custom power cords and retractile cords can be customized by length, voltage capabilities, and plug configurations to suit your quality and safety standards.
  • Custom Cables. Choose your conductor, insulation, shielding, jacketing, and filler to create the perfect cable for your application.

Cable & Wire Solutions from Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable

After more than 100 years serving Chicago, Consolidated understands how important wire and cable are to this city. We were founded here in 1919, and we’ve grown right along with Chicago. In the beginning, we provided wire and radio accessories for the electronic distribution industry and supported the war effort with wire and cable for military communication. We then grew to meet the increasing demand for home appliances and entertainment and evolved into the OEM marketplace.

Today, as a customer-driven company, we specialize in custom wire and cable solutions for the agriculture, automotive, green technology, medical, factory automation, telecommunications, military, and lighting industries. Contact us today to learn more about how Consolidated powers cities around the world or to get started on your next project.

Guide to Specifying Wire Harnesses

A wire harness is a common and effective tool for keeping multiple wires within a piece of equipment in order. On a more basic level, it’s the exterior covering, or sleeve, that encases and protects an inner conductor or bundle of conductors. Known for their straightforwardness, effectiveness, and low cost, these simple casings are designed to streamline and organize multi-wire systems while protecting the wires from the elements, resulting in a cleaner, safer working environment.


As small as they are, however, wire harnesses can vary widely. In fact, most companies customize them so that they’re better suited to particular environments and applications. We’re here to help outline the basics of these essential implements so that you can find the perfect type for your company.

Types of Wire Harnesses

Wire harnesses can be made from a number of durable materials. Some of the most common include:

  • PVC
  • Vinyl
  • Thermoplastic elastomer
  • Polyurethane
  • Polyethylene

The specific material used in a harness largely depends on its surrounding environment. If the wires are run in a particularly damp environment, for example, the harness should be of a material that effectively resists moisture such as polyethylene.

Regardless of the material with which it’s made, wire harnesses can be further specialized to suit particular applications. Additional features often found in wire harnesses include:

  • Wire ties
  • Lacing
  • Insulation materials
  • Custom colors
  • Heat-shrink coatings
  • Custom labeling or barcoding
  • Four-color ink stamping
  • Individual tagging
  • Independent circuit IDs
  • Polypropylene, nylon, and paper fillers
  • Custom shielding

what is a wire harness

Just as certain materials are better suited to certain environments, certain features of wire harnesses are better suited to certain applications. Any wires at an increased risk of abrasion, for example, should be enclosed in a harness with heat-shrink coating, since heat-shrink coating is designed to minimize the effects of abrasion.

Applications of Wire Harnesses

Wire harnesses are highly versatile products that are well-suited to use in nearly every industry. Aerospace, automobiles, medicine, telecommunications, and commercial construction, as examples, constantly depend on them for smooth operations. Wire harnesses can also be found in home electronics, audio and visual equipment, and household appliances.

At Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable, we’re proud to offer a wide selection of harnesses and cable assemblies that meet even the strictest standards. We can specialize in personalized solutions to common industrial challenges, offering all customers specialized shielding, fillers, materials, identification, and style. Our harnesses can accommodate systems up to 600 volts (UL) or 3000 volts (military) and can withstand temperatures ranging from -65 °C (-85 °F) to 250 °C (482 °F), ensuring functionality in any environment.

For over a century, Consolidated Wire has set the standard in industrial wiring and cabling, helping companies of every size develop lasting solutions to and select the right wires for all of their electrical challenges. To learn more about our extensive wire and cable harness offerings and explore their benefits, check out our catalog today.

Explore Consolidated’s Informative Technical Resources

At Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable, we are committed to providing our customers with the resources they need to make an informed decision. On our website, we offer a variety of technical documents with information regarding NEMA configurations, color coding and insulation tips, and other wire and cable specific information.

  • Solid & Stranded AWG Chart: AWG-specification information for all outside diameter & wire types, including solid, concentric, rope bunched & more.PrintedCableJacketPortfolio-retouched
  • NEMA Configurations for Plugs & Receptacles: NEMA plug & receptacle configurations for voltage ranging from 125V to 600V, 15 to 60 amperes.
  • Color Coding Charts: Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable’s color coding charts for various types of cable & wire products.
  • Wire Insulation Characteristics: A comparison of various types of wire insulation materials, including PVC, polyethylene, polypropylene, rubber, Neoprene, TPR & PEP.
  • NEMA Number Nomenclature: View the NEMA number nomenclature for plugs & receptacles, as well as current ratings & voltages.
  • Cable Standards Reference Guide: View the Cable Standards Reference Guide for NEC catalog reference information and a cable substitution chart.

We encourage you to visit the Technical Info area of our website to view these documents. We hope they prove to be of some use to you and that you find the information you are looking for.

View Our Technical Info Documents

With Consolidated, it’s simple to create your own custom product.

While most of the modern gadgets we rely on appear wireless, behind the scenes things like smart phones, Wi-Fi, and tablets, require miles of wires and cable to operate. When it comes to supplying the perfect cables and wires for the modern digitized and online landscape, one-size definitely does not fit all.

Whether you are working with business machines, medical equipment, automation systems, computers, or telecommunications, you need custom designed and custom-built cables. At Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable, thanks to our Create Your Custom Cable Now form, and our latest eBook, Creating a Custom Cable, it has never been easier to create a custom cable to match your unique needs.

New Online Form: Create Your Custom Cable Now

When you embark on your next custom wire and cable project, the best place to start is on Consolidated’s user-friendly website. There you will find our Create Your Custom Cable Now form. By completing this thorough but easy-to-navigate form, you are taking the first-step in our industry-leading custom cable production process. Other than general information, you will also be asked to supply details like:

  • Electric WireCable Type (Composite, Single or Multi Conductor, etc.)
  • Conductor (Number, AWG, Stranding)
  • Insulation Type
  • Shielding
  • Jacketing
  • Specification Demands

Once completed, just press the submit button. Soon after receiving your completed form, the experts at Consolidated will contact you directly. The best part of the form is that it gives us a solid idea about what you need, thus saving you both time and money.

In order to make filling out our Create Your Custom Cable Now even easier, we also offer a free eBook, Creating a Custom Cable to help guide you through the process.

New eBook: Creating a Custom Cable

Our new eBook, Creating a Custom Cable, gives customers an insider’s view of the design and production of custom cables. Some of the highlights of our eBook include:

  • Basic considerations such as cable length, cable size, environmental temperature, flexibility, and whether the cable will be used indoors or outdoors.
  • Deciding what kind of conductor is right for you, including bare, tinned, or silver plated copper wire.
  • Choosing a material to insulate your cables that will offer both performance and protection.
  • Other topics include shielding, jacketing, cable fillers, and critical standards.

If you are in the market for the highest quality custom cables, Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable is your best choice. Both our Create Your Custom Cable Now form, and our eBook. Creating a Custom Cable, will help you start the process of creating the perfect custom cables to match both your specific application and your bottom line.

Choosing a Wire & Cable Manufacturer for Your Product

Nothing is worse than having a wire or cable fail on your commercial or industrial project. Not only can it mean downtime and costly repairs, but it can also ruin your reputation.  At Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable, we know how difficult it can be to choose the exact wire for your unique applications.

Choosing-A-WireCable-Manufacturer-thumbThat is why we created a free eBook for our customers.  It is titled:  Choosing a Wire & Cable Manufacturer for Your Product. This eBook is written to help you make the right wire and cable choice. This downloadable eBook, which is available on our website, covers a wide range of topics, each of which make picking the precise wire or cable easier and more cost-efficient.

Let’s take a closer look at our new eBook, section by section.


In this section, our experts lay out the three main capabilities you should demand of your wire and cable provider which include:

  • A reliable manufacturer makes a wide range of products, and allows for customized or completely unique products.
  • A second capability that’s non-negotiable is flexible manufacturing capacity. Your wire & cable provider should be able to produce prototype runs as well as large volume orders.
  • The last capability that is important to inquiry about is the availability of comprehensive engineering services. In-house engineering support services are a must for any project, even if custom wire & cable isn’t required.


After capabilities, cost is the next crucial zone to consider when choosing a wire and cable provider. Our eBook takes you through the hidden charges you should keep an eye out for as well as tips on how to save time and money.


No matter how affordable something is, if the quality is low, it could jeopardize your overall project or application. Choosing a Wire & Cable Manufacturer for Your Product teaches you how to properly judge quality.

These tips include, checking what industrial, precision, and operational standards your manufacturer is certified in, and how to investigate the extent your supplier goes into inspecting raw materials and finished products.

Single Point Supplier

The final section deals with why you should try to find a wire and cable manufacturer that offers one-stop shopping. You need a supplier that has the manufacturing capabilities which can grow with you.

Everyone at Consolidated Wire believes that if you follow the advice laid out in Choosing a Wire & Cable Manufacturer for Your Product, you will never be stuck with subpar wire and cable again.

To download a free copy of Choosing a Wire & Cable Manufacturer for Your Product, please visit the eBook page and simply fill in the quick form. If you want to learn how Consolidated Wire can fulfill all of these demands for your next wire or cable project, please contact us directly today.


The Key Factors to Creating a Custom Cable

Purchasing cable or wire right “off-the-shelf” that fits your specific application perfectly is easier said than done. Oftentimes, this is not the case for commercial and industrial projects.

Cover_-_Custom_Cable_eBookThese are times when it helps to have an expert in manufacturing custom cables in your corner. At Consolidated Electronic Wire & Cable, we have many years of experience creating high-quality custom cables for a wide variety of applications including medical equipment, appliances, computers, and automation systems.

Because of our capabilities and expertise, we thought it would benefit our customers to release an eBook laying out what you need to know about custom cable manufacturing. Creating a Custom Cable is a detailed eBook that takes the reader through all the questions they need to have answered in order to get the best out of the custom cable manufacturing process.

When it comes to creating a custom cable there are a number of key elements and factors to consider.

  • How much do you need?:  Some suppliers can only handle certain amounts and sizes, so you need to have this locked down from day one.
  • What are your lead-time demands?:  Rush delivery usual takes a week, while regular orders might take between 7-10 weeks.
  • What are your essential cable requirements?:  These can include cable type, whether they are to be used indoor or outdoor, and exposure temperatures.
  • What kind of conductors/insulation/shielding/jacketing/filler do you need?:  There are many material choices for all of these, so you need to do your homework, or have an expert, like Consolidated Electronic, guide you through the process.
  • Do your cables need to meet or exceed certain industry standards?:  These include popular standards like RoHS, OSHA, and Mil-Spec.

All of this information and more can be found in our new eBook, Creating a Custom CableShould you have any questions afterward, please contact Consolidated so one of our custom cable experts can assist you.

To download our free eBook, Creating a Custom Cable, simply click the link or select the button below.

Start Your Custom Project With Us Today
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