Appropriate signs warning of the potential hazards within fenced substation enclosures are required by the National Electrical Safety Code and are an essential safety element designed to protect the public.
It makes sense for utilities to invest in signs that will last 15 years or more, but quality signs made from durable materials are expensive. Unfortunately, the attachment methods used with signage usually doesn’t get prioritized the same way as the signs.
It’s not uncommon for substation managers to use steel wire or even plastic cable ties to attach signs to fences. This is because the wide openings of a standard chain link fence present a challenge towards using commonly available nut, bolt or washer hardware.
Steel wire, cable ties, and similar methods corrode, break-away, or are easily removed by thieves searching for materials they can sell for scrap value. These methods also reflect poorly on your utility’s brand image.
Above are two examples of wire attachment exhibiting corrosion. Eventually these signs will fall off the fence and rust stains will cover them.
Below is an example of a nylon cable tie attachment that has weakened and broke free. To get the most out of your signage, you want to use attachment devices and materials that last as long as your signs.
The Solution: Electromark Fence Brackets
Electromark’s fence brackets provide a larger bearing ‘washer’ surface that spans an entire fence link opening, making contact with the wire on two sides of the mesh opening no matter where the holes in the sign align with it.
These brackets come packaged in pairs with all stainless steel hardware that includes hex bolts (or optional tamper-resistant one-way screws), flat washers to protect the face of your sign around the attachment hole and lock washers that further prevent loosening of the screw.
The backing plate is made from thick, corrosion-resistant aluminum, that unlike competitive fence brackets made from plastic won’t embrittle and break over time due to weathering elements.
The stainless steel nut insert is permanently pressed in place, making it an integral part of the bracket that doesn’t require a wrench or other tools to prevent it from turning while tightening the hardware.
This design allows a single person to be able to install a sign from the outside of the fence and doesn’t require the installer to enter the enclosure to attach the sign.
To see how fast one person can install a sign with our fence brackets, take a moment to watch our video here:
The Electromark Difference
Once installed with a self-clinching nut or a tamper-proof bolt, Electromark’s fence brackets are virtually impossible to remove.
Fence brackets can be ordered along with your new Electromark substation signs or purchased to update inferior attachments that hold existing signs on your fences.
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I have been in my present role as Technical Sales and Application Engineer with Electromark for 9+ years, and with the company for 14 years. My earlier experience with the company was with our printing and other manufacturing operations. My knowledge with Electromark and the industries it serves includes materials, products, process capabilities, weathering durability, regulations, and standards. See my Linkedin profile at https://www.linkedin.com/in/brandon-furber-0036644a/
With over 40 years of experience, Electromark specializes in identification and safety marking solutions for the electrical utility industry, other service utilities, and the outdoor industrial workplace. Our products are engineered for the harsh, outdoor environment.