Band mates won't wrap cables properly

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Jared Houseman, Jul 11, 2020.

  1. Jared Houseman

    Jared Houseman

    Jul 5, 2018
    Maybe I am just being picky, but my band mates refuse to wrap our cables properly. We bought a bunch of xlrs and I would like to make them last so I've shown them the over-under method several times (it makes cables easier to roll out and prevents them from getting that twist overtime). Anytime I remind them lightly I'm always met with "the way I do it is faster" or "I've never had problems doing it my way." Coiling cables correctly is just as fast once you get used to it and helps during set up.

    It's not really a big deal, it's just cables, but it is a little annoying that they don't bother to try
  2. It bothers me too. If they would spend 30 seconds more, the cables will last ten times longer. I pay for nice cables, and I’ve always coil them correctly, because I want them to last. Wrapping them opposite of the way they were made, will break the copper strands.
    When I was a small child (8th generation Texan) I was taught how to coil up a rope lariat correctly - because if your rope fails you when you’re working with animals, it can be very dangerous.
    You coil a rope the same as a cable - a half twist each loop. So it just came naturally when I started playing music.
    And it’s easier than doing it the wrong way!
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2020
  3. Mark 63

    Mark 63 Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2012
    Maybe the answer is to tell them to coil the cables like a lariat. Make it sound cool. As kids, we all wanted to be cowboys spinning ropes.
  4. :thumbsup:
    Michael Bauer likes this.
  5. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    I don't let anyone coil cables. I suppose more accurately, I tell them not to.
    As long as everything makes it back into the truck at the end of the gig, I will deal with the cables.
    I will wrap the cables my way, and it's easier and faster for me if I don't have to un-do cables that have been wrapped wrong.
    It's a therapeutic couple of hours and I can inspect them for damage along the way.
    And I can make sure that the 20's are binned with the 20's, the 25's are binned with the 25's, etc - rather than being surprised when I go to reach for a cable at the next setup only to discover that I've just run a cable that's 5 feet short.
    I'm glad to let the guys help with the heavy lifting, in and out, but leave the cables to me - they're mine anyway.

    As long as they will take the heavy stuff _to_ but not _into_ the truck.
    Stuff fits in exactly one way, and I'm tired of having to unload everything at the end of a 0300 load-out because stuff got put in wrong...
    This inevitably happens on either the hottest or coldest day of the year... Bonus points if it is raining or snowing...
  6. Last Rebel

    Last Rebel Lone Wolf - No Club Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2011
    Ontario Canada
    Everybody buy their own cables is my advice.. Let them ruin their own, and then certainly they will need to borrow one from you when theirs fail :meh:
  7. friskinator


    Apr 5, 2007
    Nothing drives me more crazy than the response of "well, this is how I do it." It's dismissive and usually reflects an unwillingness to admit fault.
  8. filmtex


    May 29, 2011
    This is EXACTLY how I work as well. Luckily I have a guitar player who splits PA duties with me. In town-his PA, out of town-my PA. And he always helps move the gear to my van. Drummer takes care of all his stuff. It's a good system.
    Monti Delmars likes this.
  9. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Wait.... Your load out is TWO HOURS?????

    Man, this is 2020. You need to invest in some smaller, lighter gear! :D If you're still using road cases and rack gear you ain't doin' it right!

    In my band, we all own our own cables. Keys player and I are more peculiar about how we roll ours up than everybody else is.
    QweziRider, 31HZ and lfmn16 like this.
  10. I just throw them out and buy new ones.
    rockdoc11, Discount Bassy and 31HZ like this.
  11. Wasnex


    Dec 25, 2011
    I agree. With just a little practice it really doesn't take any longer, and it actually does facilitate setup and extend cable life.

    Unfortunately most people generally don't like to be told how to do things, so your best course of action may be to try and get them to let you wrap all of the cables. Or maybe one other person who is willing to use over/under can help you.
    Yellow Bang66 and Rabidhamster like this.
  12. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    I am in the bad habit of coiling incorrectly. That being said, I’ve never broken a cable from incorrect coiling. Guess I’m lucky or just gentle. I have a 25 footer that’s last me about 25 years and that’s a cheap cable. Most of my other cables are more high end as the pricing also shows. About 1/2 of my cables are customized for me ( hand built).
    Be that as it may, long cables are easier to manage with the correct method. Especially FOH and monitor system cables.
    Charlzm and lfmn16 like this.
  13. lfmn16

    lfmn16 Inactive

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    in 49 years I've had a handful of guitar cables go bad, can only remember one speaker cable going bad. Not that I wouldn't roll cables the way I was asked, it's just that no one ever asked me to roll them in a special way and it's never been a problem.
    fhm555 likes this.
  14. Lowfader


    Jul 11, 2004
    Our drummer rolls up his cables over the hand & elbow method like he’s going to hang it on the back of a construction truck. I showed him how to wrap the cables properly,didn’t do any good. Now I get his mic cables when they break, repair them, and use them in my practice room.
    Monti Delmars likes this.
  15. JakobT


    Jan 9, 2014
    Oslo, Norway
    Me too. It’s a complete waste of time end effort to try to teach them something they’re not interested in doing, and will only do wrong if they try.
    Frankie Fender likes this.
  16. gebass6

    gebass6 We're not all trying to play the same music. Supporting Member

    Buy your own.
    Wrap your own.

    Let them wrap their own wrong.
    It causes you more irritation to try to get them to do it right.

    When they break theirs,just shrug your shoulders"I don't know,Man"
    Sometimes you just have to let things fail to prove a point.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2020
  17. 2playbass


    Aug 12, 2013
    I look after the cables for the mains and monitors, but everyone else in the band is responsible for their own mic and DI cables. It frequently happens, of course, that they forget cables, or have ones that go bad. I always carry plenty of spares that I will SELL them, not loan them. Too often stuff is "borrowed" and I never see it again. I keeps my eyes open in my local online marketplace for people selling off mic cables. I can usually buy good quality used cables for about $5 each (that I test before adding to my spares), and I charge my band mates $20. Call it a "convenience fee", and an incentive for taking responsibility for their own gear. I spent years being the "nice guy", always loaning out or giving out spare cables, batteries, extension cords, power bars, adapters, etc., but grew tired of it. I'd hate to think how much it has probably cost me over the years. Now if they need a cable, 20 bucks and they keep it.

    MYLOWFREQ Supporting Member

    May 13, 2011
    I'm a sound person and yes it would bother me as well, but I'd give up telling them if I were you. Look like they won't change.
  19. Paulabass


    Sep 18, 2017
    My show uses 14 channels, 5 monitors, 2 subs, 4 tops, and a few DMX lines. That's enough mic cables, and I have ONE rule to band members- Coil it correctly or not at all. If you are a not at all, you must be moving other gear while I coil cables.
    A few tricks to ease the pain- Have a drum snake. 8 channels is usually enough. Label and shrink wrap the fan ends- Kick, snare, hat....... Own 6 foot cables just for drums that pack seperately with the drum snake.
    Make ALL your other cables the same length. I use 25'. Having 20, 30, and 50 foot cables in the same case is a disaster. Just join as many 25' as ness.
    Use wireless DMX, but if you must run cables, use mic cables and put a DMX terminator at the end of the line.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2020

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