A common self-locking plastic wire tie has been modified (see figure) to enable the installer to snap off excess tie material after installation, without need for a cutting tool and without creating a potentially hazardous sharp end. A typical unmodified wire tie of this type is available in any of a variety of sizes and is made of nylon or another plastic. When the unmodified tie is tightened around a bundle of wires or other object, the excess tie material (the material that protrudes from a unitary locking mechanism at one end of the tie) must be cut off flush with the locking mechanism by use of a special tool. Often, an installer does not possess such a tool or cannot use the tool because of space limitations. Consequently, the installer often resorts to cutting the excess material with a wire cutter, which can leave a dangerously sharp protruding end.
The modification consists in scoring the underside of the tie at intervals of about 1/16 in. (1.6 mm) along its length. After the tie is tightened in place, the excess material can be pulled back and snapped off at the scored line nearest the unitary locking mechanism, leaving a short, nearly flush end.
This work was done by Arthur R. Hayhurst of Langley Research Center. No further documentation is available. LAR-15103