How to Protect Truck and Crane Cable Reels from Birds, Mice, etc.

Posted on Thursday, June 23, 2016 in UEA Blog

Cable reels aren't for the birds. Or mice. Or bugs. When a cable reel is put onto the boom of a service truck or crane, it's inevitably parked outside and can be left unused for extended periods of time. During these periods of non-use, nature tends to find its own use for the equipment. We've seen some interesting uses over the years.

Fully enclosed cable reels make excellent homes for birds' nests and provide a bountiful amount of wire insulation for mice to chew on and use for nests. Asian beetles and wasps also find the environment provided by an enclosed cable reel to be quite suitable for their needs. Fortunately, or perhaps unfortunately if you're a nature enthusiast, you won't find any of these types of reels manufactured at UEA for service truck applications.

Cable real image

The idea behind an enclosed cable reel is not without merit. Protection from sun, rain, snow, and ice accumulation can extend the life of the cable contained on the reel and prevent other failures associated with the elements.

However, we've also seen the drawbacks from enclosed reels. To provide the benefits of protection from the elements without creating a home for animals or a place for water and ice to accumulate, UEA designed a reel series with an optional top half cover. With the bottom of the reel being open, anything that may have collected on top of the cable will be allowed to fall away. In this way the top-half cover provides all the benefits of an enclosed reel without the drawback of holding in anything unwanted.

The optional top-half cover is not the only customizable option on the PD reel series. PD reels can be supplied with two to six conductors, depending on the wire gauge/cable outer diameter. In addition, the reels come with a durable powder-coat finish and up to 22ft (6.7m) of cable extension. Various mounting brackets and cable guides are available for both right and left side of the boom mounting.

Interested in more information about UEA cable reels? Go to or check out some more cable reel blogs at

Daniel Hanawalt
Business Development Manager