Frequently Asked Questions
Why can’t I buy an empty reel & put in my own cable?
For the static end not to twist when the retractable end is in use, the cable must be wired to a commutator and routed with the appropriate strain relief, then tension must be set. Different cable types require different commutators and wiring methods. Some cable types are not suitable for retractable cable reels due to lack of flexibility or qualities of the cable jacket. The outer diameter of the cable also affects how much cable can fit on or in the reel.
Can my Ninja Clamp neck be made shorter? or longer?
Yes. It does take some strength to separate the links and pop back together without special tooling. Watch this video for how to do it yourself. Contact us about purchasing additional links. Keep in mind that each added link will reduce the amount of weight the Ninja Clamp can support.
Commutator or commutation:
A commutator is a device that transfers the signal from one wire to another. Retractable cable reels use rotary slip rings or commutators which allows the cables to move independently of each other. The retractable end moves while the static end remains stationary, thus can remain plugged in while the retractable end is deployed or rewound. Depending on the type of cable, a circuit board or booster may be part of the commutator design to reduce the transmission loss. All commutators have some loss.
This is sometimes called a pigtail. It is usually the shorter cable and does not retract.
Retractable reels have a locking/releasing mechanism which can be removed to so that the cable is always in tension. This state of constant tension is often needed when machinery moves while the cord or cable is in use. Examples are stage sound and lighting on moving trusses, factory robotics, handheld remote controls or switches. Removing the lock must be done by a skilled technician for safety and quality reasons.