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Cable Differences: Which One Meets Your Needs?

Cable Differences: Which One Meets Your Needs?

It’s not uncommon to question which type of material is best suited for a particular task. In fact, you should strive to use the most capable tool for the job as it can often simplify tasks and make your job easier! If you’re unsure about which cable is right for you, there’s no need to worry, because the portable power experts at ATI Electrical Supply will always deliver the portable power solutions that will exceed your expectations. This article will define the main differences between our most popular cable solutions: Type W, Diesel Locomotive (DLO), Stage Cable (SC), and Welding Cable.

Heavy-Duty Cable Differences: Type W vs. DLO

Before we divulge into the main differences between these two cables, I believe that we should first review the similarities between the two before we can determine the differences. To start, both cables are equipped with a double insulated jacket and have a higher voltage rating than most and are capable of operating at 2000 volts in portable power systems. This makes both cables highly conducive for more industrial work environments because the double insulated jacket allows for a tougher outer layer that can endure more damage. The CPE outer jacket is designed to weather all forms of high-stress environmental conditions including exposure to oil, sunlight, water, alkaline, acids, moisture, chemicals, heat, and fire as it meets the MSHA Flame-Resistant requirements by UL.

Both DLO and Type - W contain a high copper strand count providing flexibility and versatility which allows for a wide range of operations. However, DLO conductors are unique in that they contain a tinned coating around the copper strands which makes it easier to land on terminals and provides protection from oxidation and corrosive materials. Also, DLO cables are available with a single conductor, whereas Type-W cords are available with a single conductor or up to 5 multi-conductor configurations.

After closely comparing these two, our portable power experts recommend a Type-W conductor for more industrial temporary power applications simply because of its versatile build allowing for it to endure high levels of stress for extended periods of time. However, DLO cables may be a better fit for use with industrial machinery connections. Both DLO and W cords include multiple certifications such as UL, MSHA certified, CSA approved, cULus, and ROHS compliant. For any questions, concerns, or even quotes regarding Type – W or DLO cord and cables, please contact our portable power experts at (800)-597-9311 or email us at We always keep thousands of feet of RAW Type-W Cable and pre-assembled Type-W Camlock Extension Cables on hand to guarantee fast and reliable shipping for our customers.

Light-Duty Cable Differences: Stage Cable vs. Welding Cable

ATI happily caters to all of our customer’s needs, no matter how large or how small. Therefore, we often recommend Stage Cables or Welding Cables for light to medium-duty jobs such as indoor events or outdoor entertainment venues. We’re confident that these two cables are more than capable of performing in these types of environments. However, when it comes to commercial or industrial construction, Stage and Welding Cable will suffice but they may require repairs or replacements before the job’s conclusion.

Stage Cable, as you could probably interpret by its name, is specifically designed for temporary power connections in TV and production sets that include sound and lighting systems in both indoors and outdoors. It excels in these types of environments when examining a cost analysis between welding cables or more heavy-duty cords. Type SC cables exhibit a fully annealed Class K bare copper and high strand count which provides for incredible flexibility and a voltage rating of 600V. Stage and Lighting Cables are equipped with a single CPE jacket which renders this cord as a very reliable option, although it's ranked just below Type W & DLO in terms of durability. Type SC cords and cables meet a variety of industry standards including UL, CSA, NEC, CEC, ROHS, and MSHA flame tests.

Welding Cables are similar to SC in terms of flexibility and durability, which is why we’ve classified them into this light to medium-duty category. They are available in either a red or black jacket, rated for a maximum of 600V and built from a rugged EPDM jacket. This type of cable is typically used with standard welding operations, construction, marine, manufacturing, and temporary power generator connections. Our welding cord have passed the UL Flame test UL854 and is RoHS compliant.

After consulting with the experts at ATI, we’ve closely compared both cables and have determined that the Type SC Stage and Lighting cable would be a more suitable cable for light to medium-duty applications. Our stage cables have the capability to perform in an entertainment setting while providing a durable CPE jacket than can outlast welding cables on a rugged construction site. Ultimately, we can conclude that both Welding and SC cables are a top choice for temporary power and generation connections.

ATI’s Cable Options and Where to Find Them

ATI Electrical Supply is a top tier cable and portable power supplier, and you can find all 4 of these cables directly on our website for purchase. If you ever have any questions regarding any of our products on the website, whether its cables, connectors, generators, or anything else, please don’t hesitate to contact our team using our live chat online or call us directly at (800)-597-9311 for quick and easy service with one of our friendly representatives. Our site will offer standard cable assembly solutions in lengths of 10’, 25’, 50’, 75’, and 100’ but if you need a custom length, we will be more than happy to accommodate you. Simply fill out the form below regarding any custom solutions and a team member will connect with you right away.

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