10 Qualities to Demand When Buying Wire Rope thumbnail

10 Qualities to Demand When Buying Wire Rope

Wire rope has come to be one of the most useful and adaptable pieces of lifting equipment available to dozens of industries around the world. Its structure and composition see it being used to help lift heavy weights, as electrical cables, and even being used for structural support. This means that, naturally, it is designed to be strong, adaptable, and resilient to whatever conditions it will be subject to. That being said, you must, as with any product or piece of equipment that you purchase, demand certain qualities when purchasing it. We’ve listed 10 of these below.

#1 Its length and diameter

The rope can be manufactured in a wide range of lengths, sizes and diameters, a critical fact given the vast number of tasks it is used for. Modern day machines and state-of-the-art facilities, like our very own that we have here at Rope Services Direct, mean that wire can be produced to your exact specifications.

buying wire rope

Wire rope can come manufactured to your specific length requirements


Make sure that when purchasing, it is the exact length and diameter that you need!

#2 Your rope complies with all necessary regulations

There are various laws, rules and regulations that apply to the use of lifting gear and equipment, and it is important that your supplier complies with these. Examples of these can be seen in the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER) regulations and the Lifting equipment at work; a brief guide handbook.

#3 The core of your wire rope

Wire ropes are constructed by wrapping wires and strands around a strong internal core, typically fibre, although this varies. Ensure that the core is both the one that you asked for, and that it is also strong enough to handle the task that it will be subject to.

#4 Its strength

Like pretty much all pieces of lifting gear and lifting equipment, wire rope can have varying levels of lifting strengths and breaking points. Make sure you know exactly the weight of the loads that you want to lift before buying, but also that this is the strength of rope you need when purchasing.

#5 The level of element resistance

It is designed to have a higher level of resistance to things such as corrosion and rust than other pieces of lifting gear and equipment. This is particularly important as much of the work that it does is outdoors with more of the elements. Make sure you demand that your rope has this quality when purchasing it.

buying wire rope

Make sure that your wire rope is rust resistant if you’ll be working outside


#6 The level of abrasion resistance

The rope will often be run over sharp or rough edges, which will cause a natural abrasion. As with the elements, the equipment has a stronger resistance to abrasion than many other pieces of lifting gear, but make sure you confirm this with your sales rep.

#7 Its compatibility

It is often utilised with many other different pieces of lifting gear and end terminations, helping it to be used for a wide variety of tasks. Make sure you know exactly what you’ll be using the lifting equipment for, then you’ll be able to figure out exactly what other items you need and if your equipment is compatible with them.

#8 The wire rope has been finished correctly

The end of your rope will need to be spliced, and it’s important that this has been done in the right way so as to prevent any fraying. Manufacturers who know what they’re doing should have no problem with this, but do check that the whole of your rope, including the rest of the length of it, all looks in good working order.

#9 Have you got the right type of rope?

There are different types that are designed for different functions. For instance, we stock anti-spin, trailer ropes and galvanised wire rope, all designed with a different purpose, so make sure you get the one that you asked for!

#10 What if something goes wrong?

In the unlikely event that there is a problem, make sure that you ask the manufacturer what you should do. All rope is designed to last for a long time, so with regular inspections, you should have no problems.

Are you looking at buying rope equipment?

Now that you know exactly what you should be looking out for, perhaps you are interested in acquiring some for your own application or industry? If that is the case, please do not hesitate to get in contact with one of our expert team here.



Image credit: qimono and



Webbing Slings Vs Round Slings – the Pros and Cons of Each thumbnail

Webbing Slings Vs Round Slings – the Pros and Cons of Each

Webbing Slings Vs Round Slings

Having a hard time deciding between your webbing slings and your round slings? We know it can be confusing trying to figure out the differences between the two and which one might be right for your application. With that in mind, we’ve put together this handy guide on webbing slings vs round slings, looking at the pros and cons of each.

What are webbing slings?

Webbing slings are flat belt straps, usually woven together from 100% polyester, and have eye loops at either end. They can be manufactured in a variety of lengths and widths. Webbing slings are also handily colour coded so that you know the exact lifting strength of your piece of lifting equipment. You can find the colour coded chart on our webbing sling page.

webbing slings vs round slings

The above shows the various webbing slings that we have on offer at Rope Services Direct

What are the pros of webbing slings?

Webbing slings have many pros. They provide a flexible, lightweight and portable alternative to many other pieces of lifting equipment on the market. This flexible nature means they can be easily wrapped around loads, especially those with a wide bearing surface or an odd shape. Their lightweight and soft nature also means that there will be minimal scratching or denting caused to the load that you are lifting or lowering.


What are the cons of webbing slings?

However, there also cons to using webbing slings. They aren’t as strong as many pieces of lifting gear on the market, so aren’t always the best option if you have heavy loads to lift. They also don’t work as well in some conditions, such as where moisture may be present.

Now that we’ve looked at the pros and cons of webbing slings, we will do the same with round slings below, as well as comparing the two.

What are round slings?

Round slings are very similar to webbing slings, in that they are usually manufactured from polyester. However, they are also covered in a stronger jacket too, usually tubular. They are also one endless loop of yarns, as opposed to just having loops at the end like with webbing slings. They too are colour coded, following the same chart that was featured on our webbing slings page.


What are the pros of round slings?

Round slings feature many of the same pros as webbing slings; flexible, portable and offering great protection for loads. However, they generally offer slightly better protection to the load.

webbing slings vs round slings

This is an example of a round sling

And, thanks to the round slings endless loops, they provide a much better choke hold than webbing slings and the pressure point of the load can keep changing, unlike the fixed ends of webbing slings.


What are the cons of round slings?

Round slings suffer the same cons as webbing slings in that they aren’t the strongest piece of lifting equipment on the market, but they have a much lower stretch rate than webbing slings.

Webbing slings Vs round slings – which is the right type of sling for me?

Ultimately, both webbing slings and round slings are great pieces of lifting equipment that are suitable for different lifting tasks. Round slings are stronger and offer protection, while webbing slings have a higher stretch rate. If you want help in deciding if a webbing sling, round sling or another piece of lifting equipment is the right piece of equipment for your application, you can get in contact with us here.



Image credit: Drew Stephens



Wire Rope Breaking Strain Guide thumbnail

Wire Rope Breaking Strain Guide

Wire rope is designed to be an incredibly strong and sturdy piece of equipment that you can safely rely upon for your heavy lifting tasks. But, as with all equipment, it does have a maximum lifting strength. To avoid your equipment breaking, we have provided a breaking strain guide below.

What makes wire rope strong?

It is designed so as to not break easily. With metal wires woven together into strands, which have then been wrapped around a strong, central core in a helix fashion, its very structure has durability in mind.

Unlike other pieces of lifting equipment, should one strand or several wires break, it is possible for the equipment to complete its lifting task. However, we would of course not recommend you continuing to use it after this, and one broken section is an indication of its maximum breaking strain.

Lifting strengths of lifting equipment – a guide

Before looking at a more specific breaking strain guide, it’s important that you understand the difference between a working load limit and a safe working load. This applies to all lifting equipment.


wire rope breaking strain

All lifting equipment will have a breaking limit


Working load limit

The working load limit is the absolute maximum that your lifting gear can handle when it comes to the weight of a load. If you lift any more than this, then your lifting equipment is being strained well beyond its breaking limit, and it will be dangerous to all of those around you. However, please note that as you shouldn’t exceed this limit, you shouldn’t be lifting anywhere near this either. Instead you should be operating at the safe working load, as explained below, as your maximum.


Safe working load

The safe working load is significantly lower than the working load limit, but is the limit that you can safely operate at while maintaining a long service life for your lifting equipment.

The safe working load will be well below the breaking strain of your lifting equipment, and so you can use this as a good working guide. For example,  our 3mm 7×19 per metre wire rope has a working load limit of 332Kg, but a safe working load of 55Kg. You can clearly see that if you operate at the safe working load, you are well below the breaking strain of your wire rope.


A breaking strain guide

Each piece will have a different lifting strength and, therefore, a different breaking strain limit. When purchasing from us you can see the various lifting strengths of our ropes here, and this will change based on the diameter of the lifting medium. For a handy breaking strain guide, you can see detailed weights, loads and maximum limits here.


Carrying out thorough inspections on your lifting gear


It is important that you carry out regular inspections and safety checks on your lifting gear. If you stick to the safe working load, you won’t be putting breaking strain on the rope, but all lifting equipment naturally suffers wear and tear. But, by following our guide and regularly checking your equipment, you’ll be able to prolong its service life, and keep yourself and your load safe. Should you need help with inspections, or want to know more about the breaking strain, give us a call here.



Image credit: Brian Smithson