It is important that the manufacturing site takes preventive measures to help reduce the chance of fiber damage during stripping, and measures to identify such damage, should it exist, before connectorizing.
Such measures may include:
- Performing a “bending test” on each stripped fiber, by securing the buffer just below the strip point and bending the fiber 45-degrees in each of 4 directions. If the fiber has been scored during the stripping, it is likely to break during this test. Better to break now and have to re-strip the product than to have it break later in the process or, in the worst case, have it break after receipt by the customer.
- When cleaning the fiber with alcohol before connectorizing (which should always be done), make sure the operator cleans the fibers “squeaky clean”—–the vibrations of the fiber which generate the “squeak” may be sufficient stress to break a fiber which has been damaged during stripping.
- Having all strip tools on a strict Preventive Maintenance program, examining the stripping blades for wear, and evaluating the stripping effectiveness. The Maintenance program can use the results of Bending Test failures to trigger immediate blade replacement, and also be used to determine a suitable time-based or strip-count-based blade replacement schedule.
- Always ensure stripper blades are cleaned and free of debris before stripping each fiber.
- Prior to inserting into the ferrule, ensure that stripped fibers do not contact anything other than the lab-wipe used for cleaning. Even resting stripped fibers on a production table surface can result in damage to the bare fiber. If the operator needs to put down the stripped cable before inserting into a ferrule, the stripped fiber end should be suspended in air and not allowed to contact and surface.
Additional resources from the FOC team include:
- Glossary, Acronyms, Military Specifications for Connectors: http://bit.ly/2a2EFn8
- Q&A Resource: email technical questions to AskFOC@focenter.com
- Contact FOC with questions at: (800) 473-4237 / 508-992-6464 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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