What is the powder inside power leads ?

Hi Guys,
I hope this isn't a stupid question. I'm curious; what exactly is the powder between the outer sheath and the inner conductors in a mains
power lead? I'm talking about the stuff that gets everywhere when you strip a lead to replace a power plug or socket. Its inside every Australian lead I've ever worked on - I guess US ones are the same.
Thanks for your help.
DJP
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Darren J. Paul wrote:

My guess is it's powdered talc.
GWE
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The cable in question equivalent in Canada and USA is Pyrotenic cable, the insulation is clay if my memory serves me well. Pretty much a thing of the past now but it is out there.
Pete

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the
mains
when you

same.
cable, the

of the

No Pete the o/p is talking flexible cable to an appliance I think. Pyro (M.I.C. or Mineral Insulated Cable) is for fixed wiring and usually specified for areas of fire hazard or services that must survive a fire for a period like emergancy lighting.
AWEM
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as a lubricant to help the cables flex?
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Jordan wrote:

Yes and No. . Its to stop the wire(s) sticking to the sheath, makes life easier when stripping them.....also, provides a little bit of "slip" between the wire and the sheath, useful for cables that get flexed a lot....no doubt there are now more "modern" plastics used for this that dont need the talc...
Andrew VK3BFA.
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Jordan wrote:

This is my understanding too.
Best wishes,
Chris
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Jordan wrote:

My guess its talc. But why? my further guis that most cables today are made with plastic or pvc. this is extruded hot around the inner insulated leads. the talc is to prevent the outer from bonding to the inner pvc so the electrician can strip them easily.
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wrote:

Yes, to stop the insulation on the individual wires from binding on the outer sheath. Without the talc, you wouldn't be able to coil the cable.
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Darren J. Paul wrote:

White powder! White powder!! Call Homeland Security *Now*!! :)
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Interesting. Talc makes sense; I hadn't thought about the need for the conductors to slide inside the sheath when the lead is flexed / coiled.
This is in a brand new cable, BTW.
Thanks guys.
DJP
On Sat, 06 Jan 2007 12:46:56 +1000, Darren J. Paul

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