To recap from a previous blog on Specifying MIL-DTL-83420 Aircraft Cable, the specification controls the manufacturing and performance standards of flexible aircraft cables used in aircraft control applications. The cables are designated by size, type, and composition, and further segmented by construction. In other words, there are many options for selecting a certified aircraft cable by diameter, material, construction, and jacket type, should that be required.
The QPL-83420 provides a shorthand method to call out the different characteristics of these cables in an attempt to standardize and simplify the call out and ordering of mil spec cables. But as most of you know this can also create some spec fatigue while you try to decipher drawing requirements and customer requests. Luckily, Strand Core has created a quick and easy look at the ways to translate the "Slash and Dash" call outs: a series of numbers meant to facilitate ordering of material based on the aforementioned size, type, and composition.
For example, you may receive an inquiry for Type 2 Composition B 3/32"-1/8" 7x7 Aircraft Cable. Or a customer may just ask you for M83420/4-013. How do you know what they need?
First, you can always review this on your own. Here is an explanation of the basic details for specifying Military Specification Galvanized and Stainless Steel Aircraft cable:
There are two compositions of steel specified in MIL-DTL-83420
Composition A: Galvanized Steel
Composition B: Corrosion resistant (Stainless type 302/304) Steel
There are two types of material specified in MIL-DTL-83420M
Type I: Bare Cable
Type II: Jacketed Cable
So, your customer is asking for: Type 2 (jacketed) Composition B (Stainless Steel) 3/32"-1/8" 7x7 Aircraft Cable, or Loosco Part# SF0947701
"Slash and Dash"
How about the M83420/4-013?
This one's easy, provided you have understand the type and composition above, and have access to the MIL-DTL-83420M Qualified Producers List:
M83420: Military Specification Mil-DTL-83420M
/4: Type II, Composition B
-013: 3/32"-1/8" 7x7
Finally, and most highly recommended, we suggest that you use the new Strand Core Cross reference guide. Available on our website, you can find the referenced slash and dash number in the tables and look up the description to determine the cable’s characteristics. From there you can also determine the actual Strand Core part number to order that particular part. Simple enough.
Once you download the cross reference guide, you’ll notice that is contains other specifications as well. Strand Core also manufactures Military Specification cables to the following: MIL-DTL-87161, MIL-DTL-18375, MIL-DTL-83140, and MIL-W-18242B. The guide works as easily for these call-outs as it does for MIL-DTL-83420: Simply find your specification and determine the Strand Core Part Number you need.
And remember, almost all military specifications provide you with a selection of manufacturers that are qualified to manufacture and certify aircraft cable to the specification. Choosing one of these manufacturers is the only way to guarantee that the product has undergone the rigorous manufacturing and testing requirements need to certify the cable as compliant. Any it’s the only way to verify to your customers and users that you have selected and provided the highest quality cable available in the market.
Strand Core is one of the few companies that meets these quality and performance standards. If you need certified MIL-DTL-83420 aircraft cable, or any other mil-spec cable for that matter, visit our aircraft cable page to learn more about what we offer. And if you have any questions about our full product line of aircraft cables, wire ropes, and assemblies, contact us at any time and we will be happy to help.