Braiding is the process in which small strands of steel wire, nylon strands, or glass fibers are woven together on top of a wire or cable for added protection, adding a low-resistance path to the ground.
At the start of the process, numerous spools, also called "bobbins", of very small gauge wire (32-36 AWG) are inserted into a wire braiding machine. The bobbins are each placed in a precise location within the machine and the ends of each bobbin are pulled to the top of the braiding machine.
Next, the bobbins are subjected to a spinning or circular weaving motion, while a wire or cable is pulled up through the center of the bobbins. As the synchronized process commences, a weave or braid is manufactured over the cable. Finally, the finished product is drawn out of the braiding machine onto a larger spool or payoff.
Braiding adds physical strength and abrasion resistance. However, it can still maintain flexibility and flex life. Braids can also reduce signal interference from other nearby cables. Generally, braids provide 80-95% coverage of wire or cable. They can be constructed of bare copper, tinned copper, nickel, or silver. While braided shielding works at all frequency types, it performs best in low-frequency and medium-frequency applications.