How do you store / transport your cables?

  • We have a very messy system for our band ... 2 boxes, one for power-cables and one for signal / XLR.

    Although they get wrapped up quite nicely each time, they somehow twist to one ridiculous mess overnight in the car ...

    So I‘d like to know:

    How do you manage your cables? :)

  • How do you roll your cables? If they are rolled this way they should stay rolled in place. It is possible that they were rolled in in a coil/spring fashion and has developed a memory (it naturally wants to unwind). If that is the case just roll them straight and let them sit out in the sun for a day. The method showed above should be used to roll all cables (power, audio, network etc.) but you will still find cables that are more plastic than copper (for example Cat 5) doesn't have the mass to fold in on itself. Then a piece of velcro, or elastic string works to keep it rolled up, but should still be rolled with the method in the video to extend the life of the cable.

  • Velcro on all cables, and each cable is color coded with a piece of colored electrical tape, protected by transparant shrinkwrap to show its length.

    Also the way MauritzSA suggests is the correct way to roll a cable, as it defeats the possible forming of "8" figures: just rolling a cable over your forearm and elbow gives a twist in each loop, which makes cables want to go straight again. There is a flaw however in Mauritz' method, and that is that when unrolling your cable, your cable has the tendency to tie itself into knots. There is another method, which doesn't do 'under', but you'll have to be carefull to twist the cable between your thumb and finger, so the loop is complety twist-free. And offcourse this can't be used with lengths over 10m, as every twist you do has to relief itself over the length of the unrolled cable. Which in turn does stress the conductors. But it's still beter than going over your elbow ;)

  • Velcro straps and a sports bag. Classy i know.

    We have a bit of a whacky setup that uses a fair few cables (extensions snakes, ambient mic runs for IEMS, click track computer patches, multiple 100+ ft xlrs and cat6's etc etc) but the simple big soft sportsbag has served us well over a the last 2 years (200+ shows). No cable failures to date. I cant lie though..... nowdays we just dump out the bag sidestage before we setup - and more often than not its a bit of a horror show (what we class as "cable care" at 3am is very different to "setup care" the next night apparently). Everything is color coded with tape so as long as each run was coiled up so its not a total twisted mess and the sleeved velcro cable strap was used to actually keep it contained - its usually not too hard to sort out. Used to have a stage box that housed all that stuff.. but as we often lug all this stuff ourselves the soft bag proved to be the easy winner and gets it done.

  • No fancy solutions out there? Road cases with any sophisticated interior? 8o

    Well, most rental companies in my neighbourhood use a standardcase on wheels, measuring 60x80, with dividers inside. But they have a lot more cables than a local coverband + they have a hydrolic cantilever tail lift mounted on the back of their truck which makes that such road cases are never to be lifted. And If they should be lifted, they allways travel with 2 techs anyway...

    I myself on the other hand have to lift every piece of equipment over the bumper of my Opel Vivaro van, or if its a bigger event ill loan a Opel Movano from Work, which still needs lifting. Often Im the first to arrive at the venue. So I keep my cables in Euronorm crates, which can easily be lifted by one person. Also my small PA equipment is stored in such crates, I have a wheel plates for those crates too, so I can roll the whole stack around..