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Catalog Number 2016.015.002.34
Description Raychem ShrinkSystems Kit, c. 1985-1990. This is a Raychem Corporation ShrinkSystems kit encased in clear plastic. The kit contains a paper brochure, a piece of wraparound heat shrink tubing, a perforated metal sleeve for connecting the tubing, two plastic cable ties, and what appears to be black electrical tape for holding a cable splice in place. The black wraparound tubing is held together with a tan rubber band, and the rest of the items are loose within the clear plastic bag. The brochure's front cover contains color photographs and text against a gray background. “Raychem ShrinkSystems / HEAVY-DUTY HEAT-SHRINKABLE PRODUCTS” is printed vertically along the left margin. “Raychem” appears in red and the rest of the text is black. Text at top reads, “Solve All Your / Insulating, Sealing and / Repair Problems.” Two small color images of a person heating wraparound tubing appear below the text, and a large color image of a heat torch shrinking tubing over a pipe fills the lower three-quarters of the page.

Jim Thompson notes that the kits were commercial products sold to electricians through electrical distribution centers and not designed for a specific client. The wraparound heat shrink tubing is constructed with a rectangular piece of irradiated plastic that has a hooked channel on each side. The two sides are secured together around an existing pipe by sliding a perforated metal sleeve over the two channels. This is called a “rail and channel” closure. Markings on the tubing indicate the appropriate main and tap cable sizes for use with the product. The concept of wraparound tubing became the basis of thousands of Raychem products.
For a repair, an electrician would start by stripping off a section from the main cable. Wire would be added and secured with cable ties. White release paper on the inside of the wraparound tubing would be pulled off exposing adhesive to help the material stay in place as the two sides were brought together and secured with the metal sleeve. A torch was applied to shrink the tubing first at the center and slowly moving to one end and then the other. Adhesive inside the wraparound would melt and provide a water proof seal and electrical insulation.
Object Name Kit, Repair
Collection 3D - Telecommunication Tools & Equipment
Title Raychem ShrinkSystems Kit, c. 1985-1990
Date c. 1985-1990
Creator Raychem Corporation, Menlo Park
Role Manufacturer
Inscription Text "G4364” and “Raychem / W10 UL [encircled] #10-#4 AWG (Main) / #14-#2 AWG (Tap)” (white text printed on wraparound); “UL [encircled] / LISTED 96J4 / Insulated / covers for / listed connec- / tors for use with / underground / conductors.” (upper left on front cover of brochure); “(c)1985 Raychem Corporation Printed in USA H52565 (512323-000) 10/87” (printed vertically at bottom right of brochure back cover)
Dimensions H-6 W-16 D-1.5 inches
Dimension Details Overall dimensions of clear plastic bag, 6 x 16 x 1.5
All following dimensions measured through clear plastic: black wraparound tubing, 11.625 x 2.625 x 0.875; metal sleeve, 12.25 x 0.5 x 0.25; cable ties, 7.5/8 x 0.25 x 0.25; brochure, 8.25 x 3.625 x 0.125
Search Terms Business and Industry
Communications Technology
Raychem Corporation
Subjects Cable industry
Radiation chemistry
Telecommunications industry
People Thompson, James C. (Jim)