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Faster by half with new trunking

Jan 2011 Busbar & Trunking | Comments Off on Faster by half with new trunking
Faster by half with new trunking
 

Legrand has just unveiled a new range of its Salamandre distribution trunking, which independent tests have shown to be 50% quicker to install than its predecessor when fitting length to length or length to fitting – which means a significant reduction in total installed cost. Fifty percent quicker is a lot, so we decided to put the product to the test. WireIN met up with Legrand’s Nigel Leaver to be put through its installation paces.

With a certain amount of pomp and ceremony, Nigel Leaver places a large carrying case on the table in front of him and unfurls it to reveal two lengths of Legrand’s new Salamandre distribution trunking. Initially, the new product looks much like the old trunking that it is replacing, which Nigel has, with a little less ceremony, removed from a bag on the floor and placed beside the shiny new offering.

After voicing this opinion, Nigel points out that the new range has been designed to be fully compatible with the product it will eventually replace and so needed to match it in many ways. “The difference between the two,” he said, “is that the new trunking is packed full of innovative new developments that will help the installer every step of the way.”

What is the difference?

So, what are these innovations and do they really help to deliver a product that is 50% quicker to fit?

The first thing to say from seeing the product demonstration is that the new trunking does feature many new developments – the company has really tried to think of everything. For example, there is a double folded safety edge on the return of the trunking, which is safer for handling and cables. A great deal of thought has also gone into producing the multi-head shake-proof screws with their dome headed threads. These are there to help to protect the cables once they have been installed.

Speed of installation and, therefore, a reduction in total installed cost, is the rationale behind this new trunking, which becomes clear as we start to put the product through its paces – everything has been done to shave off every possible installation second.

Unlike the old trunking, the new coupler is external and supplied pre-fitted so that no time is wasted having to secure it to the trunking lengths, while the fact the screws are already in place certainly saves the installer from scrabbling around in the packaging in search of the correct screw for that particular fitting.

The benefit of the pre-fitted coupler on installation speed is further enhanced by the slotted ends on all lengths, which means that the new trunking only has to be slid over the pre-fitted coupler screw to fit one length to another.

Cutting even more time off the installation is the clever combination of a rapid fit cover and push-fit, spring loaded, quarter turn turnbuckles. The cover clips on and off the trunking with ease, while the turnbuckles do exactly what their description suggests – i.e. they only need to be pushed in to secure and then given a quarter turn to release. All this adds up to a quick fit and easy access to cables for maintenance.

Returning to the multi-head shake proof screws with their dome headed threads, all are supplied assembled to the couplers and other fittings. This brings to a welcome end to the age old problem of missing bags of screws, while the fact they are all backed off ready to accept the next component ensures even quicker installation. Moreover, the screws’ multi-heads mean they can be tightened using either a screwdriver or spanner. This seemingly minor development none-the-less ensures that installers will be able to secure the screw no matter how tight a space the trunking is being installed in.

Simple is often best

Comments Nigel: “Simple ideas are often the best, and this premise can be seen across the new range. Everything we’ve done with the new trunking has been aimed at reducing installation time and cost, but looking now at the end product it’s fair to say that all of them are very simple.

“It really was just a case of stripping our existing product right back, and then challenging every single aspect of it in order to unearth the simple, but highly significant room for improvement.”

As the stopwatch ticks onwards and it is a relative struggle to secure two lengths of Legrand’s old Salamandre trunking on the same table where we had put together the new trunking with ease and speed, it does seem that this new product really can save the electrical installation industry a significant amount of time and money.

To find out more, call 0845 605 4333 or visit www.legrand.co.uk/salamandre