Most of us are familiar with basic hardware supplies. Distinguishing between nuts and bolts is not a problem. But if you are not a mechanic chances are you may not have heard of Nicopress®. Don't worry, Skygeek has got it covered.

Nicopress® sleeves are oval shaped metallic sleeves that resemble a pair of binoculars (as the adjacent image can attest). How fitting since their use is in making eye or lap splices in flexible cable. Fastening two strands of cable can be achieved by running them through these sleeves. After that, the sleeve is compressed with the appropriate Nicopress® hand squeezer. This process is advantageous since it creates a bond stronger than standard splices.

A useful guide for selecting Nicopress® sleeves is in knowing that they come in series, two common ones being 18 and 28. The 18 series is composed of plain copper while the 28 series is zinc plated. As mentioned, these sleeves come in a variety of metals and alloys including but not limited to: aluminum, (zinc or tin coated) copper, and (galvanized and stainless) steel. Also, there are various types of sleeves such as splicing, oval, dead end (termination), and repair. It is important to note that Nicopress® sleeves conform to the following military specification: MS-51844.

Nicopress® sleeves are versatile in that many types and grades of cable can be used in conjunction with their application. However, pull testing prior to use is highly recommended in ascertaining the strength of the bond between sleeve and cable. The benefits of this testing are threefold: (1) selecting the right materials, (2) establishing the correct pressing procedure, and (3) ensuring the appropriate safety margin for the intended use of sleeves and cable.

Besides wiring, electrical connection systems often require both compression sleeves and compression tools. The National Telephone Supply Company manufactures these items under the trade name Nicopress®. Despite the name, this company—and its products—have been used in applications beyond the telephone industry. Nicropress® sleeves are often used with aircraft control cable, wire rope fabrications and fiber rope.