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How to store cable drums correctly

11 September 2017

Prysmian’s very large, long, or heavy cables, like their armoured power cables, are supplied in bulk with the cable wound onto either a metal, or more commonly, a wooden drum. This allows for ease of handling, transportation, delivery and ultimately for installation. Wooden battens may also be fitted across the drum flanges to protect the cable.

It is important that everyone involved with handling the cable keeps it in prime condition so that they perform as intended, which means that care needs to be taken with the drum’s storage and handling. Here is what Prysmian would recommend for the long-term storage of cables on drums:

  • The cable drums should be stored on a suitably-drained hard standing.
  • The cable ends should remain sealed to prevent the ingress of moisture
  • The wooden drum battens should remain fixed to the drum to shield the cable sheath from excessive temperatures and UV light (see blog: beware the sunlight). For this reason, damaged wooden battens should be replaced.
  • Drums should be stored upright (like a wheel) with wedges used to prevent them rolling.
  • If a cable is stored in a space which is at a lower temperature than the temperature recommended for its installation, then care should be taken to prevent the cable being damaged by bending or impact
  • Inspect the cable drums regularly, if a drum has been damaged than the cable should be rewound onto a replacement drum.
  • A drum should be rotated by 90º every six months
  • The identification label, which confirms its CPR credentials (see other blog etc) should remain fixed to the drum
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