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The WireMate System

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011


Winner of an SABS Design Excellence Award



The system utilizes a double action hand pump with negative and positive air pressure capability, together with a range of shuttles (bullets) and conduit adaptors varying in size from 16mm, 20mm, 25mm and 32mm. The adaptors fit tightly into the conduit outlets, creating an airtight connection capable of operating at ,7 bar.  This relatively high air pressure is very important, especially on occasions where maximum performance is required.

An important feature of the system, is the designed interaction between the shuttles and adaptors. This minimizes the time required per operation, including retrieval of the pull cord from the conduit

The pull cord is lubricated to prevent friction damage to pvc conduit and to facilitate the drawing in of electrical wiring. The lubricant used is approved for human contact. The pull cord is acid resistant polypropylene twine with a breaking strain of 40kg


A suitable adaptor is selected and connected to the flexible hose of the unit. The adaptor is then pressed into the conduit outlet at the target end of the conduit.  The pull cord is tied to a suitably sized shuttle with a single knot and placed in the mouth of the conduit at the opposite end. The pump is operated for a few seconds until the shuttle reaches the adaptor.

When the above operation is complete, the brightly coloured shuttle can be clearly seen by the operator who then removes the adaptor (together with the attached shuttle)  from the mouth of the conduit. The shuttle is untied for re-use, leaving the pull cord in the conduit.


Tests have shown that the system can place pull cord into conduit in excess of the following performance figures:

  1. 100 meters of 20mm conduit with 2×90 degree bends
  2. 60 meters of 20mm conduit with 6x90degree bends
  3. 16meters of 20mm conduit with 10x90degree bends


The above operation is carried out under negative air pressure – however, the positive air pressure capability of the unit has additional benefits:-

  1. Conduit outlets can more easily be located by using the positive air pressure capability of the unit. Where conduit outlets have been inadvertently covered up or the conduit has been damaged during construction, this capability alone can save many hours – even days of frustration and unnecessary cost by making it possible to locate such problem spots or conduit openings.
  2. In addition to the above, foreign matter such as water and sand, or cement grit and small stones which may have found their their way into the conduit, and which may interfere with the wiring process and/or damage the wiring insulation, can be blown out beforehand, or removed as a part of the normal operation of the unit.