Cable Tray: If You Modify, You Must Comply
October 25, 2010
“Field Modification of Cable Tray,” a recent article appearing in the September/October 2010 issue of BICSI News Magazine, has helped propel some interesting discussions here at Chatsworth Products, Inc. (CPI).
Among them, to what extent can CPI ensure the proper regulatory compliances when modifications are made to CPI cable tray products such as the OnTrac™ Wire Mesh Cable Tray System? The answer - the full extent!
To better understand this issue, and how it can affect your data center or premise network, it’s important to remember that wire mesh cable trays are an electrical support structure as defined by the National Electric Code (NEC®) and Underwriters Laboratories® (UL). Because it supports various electrical cables throughout the data center, whether overhead, underfloor or around corners and 90 degree turns, maintaining its integrity and equipment grounding capabilities is imperative.
As the article points out, “most installers are aware that UL labeled products cannot be modified without jeopardizing the listing or labeling. Yet this has often been overlooked when installing wire mesh basket tray.” The reason for this oversight? Often times in the field, modifying cable tray means removing sections of that wire metal or splicing two different sections together to accommodate for varying degrees of turns and changes in direction of the tray itself. If this removal is not done properly, or without the specific instruction of the manufacturer, the UL listing is compromised, and therefore, runs the risk of code violations that will cost your data center precious time and money to bring up to standard.
As manufacturers of the OnTrac Wire Mesh Cable Tray System, CPI treats this issue of modification with great care and consideration. Across all 3 finishes (zinc electroplate, black powder coat, and the recently introduced pre-galvanized), the CPI OnTrac cable tray includes easy-to-follow instructions for proper field modification, which can be downloaded from our website. When properly followed, these instructions will ensure your CPI cable tray remains UL listed.
View the comprehensive instructions for OnTrac cable tray installation and modification here.