What Are Shank Balls?
Anchor points are a necessary feature of machinery featuring cables, designed to terminate cable ends while holding them in place with ample security. In order to operate a cable’s anchor point, parts like shank balls may be used. Coming in the form of a shank and a ball, these parts allow for a simplistic, yet effective, anchor point to be established in an assembly for securing cables.
While the shank is a narrow, rod-shaped section of the part, the ball serves as a rounded head on one end of the shank’s length. The two elements will always be combined as a single part, and they are a suitable termination for any length of cable that can fit through them. Both the shank and ball are hollow with openings on each side, allowing for the cable to be fed through. The shank ball can be considered a form of swage fitting, allowing for termination to be established, as the shank ball remains in place regardless of pulling forces enacted by the cable. As a result, the termination is safe and secure after the initial set-up.
Shank balls may be manufactured from a number of materials, though the most common options on the market are those constructed from stainless steel. If materials like iron or iron alloys are desired, it is important that such shank balls are kept in an environment that has low or no exposure to humidity. This is because iron and iron alloys face the risk of rusting when they are exposed to humidity. While stainless steel does have a small iron content, such materials also feature chromium which has anti-rust properties to safeguard the iron from oxidation. As such, the choice of material will often come down to whether a shank ball is or is not used in a climate-controlled environment. Beyond material, to guarantee an optimal assembly, swage balls should always be chosen with a swage fitting that can exceed the minimum breaking strength of the swaged cable.
While shank balls are the most common option, there are some hardware components that are somewhat similar. For example, one may also use balls without shanks, those of which still feature the hollow design that secures cables, lanyards, and other similar products. In other instances, balls with two shanks may also be available. As such, it can be useful to determine the exact needs of your application before making a purchase so that you can ensure an optimal solution. Like shank balls, other options also vary in the materials they are made from and diameter.
If you are interested in procuring shank balls for a landing gear pulley system, brake cables, exercise cables, or other such assemblies, look no further than ASAP Aerospace for all your operational requirements. Owned and operated by ASAP Semiconductor, we present customers access to an unrivaled inventory of over 2 billion new, used, obsolete, and hard-to-find items that have been sourced from thousands of manufacturers that we trust.
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