New Zealand & ‘Number 8’ Wire

A little known fact unknown outside of this group of islands is the cultural importance that galvanized steel wire has to the small South-pacific nation of New Zealand. In this country of just over Four Million People the locals are said to be bought up on a number 8 wire mentality. That is to say that a New Zealander (or Kiwi) is adaptable, innovative and with a piece of number 8 wire can fix just about anything.


So where does this term come from? Number 8 wire was a standard British gauge of wire which was used extensively throughout New Zealand for a multitude of purposes; primarily for fencing and within the agricultural industry. It has since been replaced (along with the imperial system of measurement) with the equivalent metric 4mm gauge but the spirit of term and mentality of New Zealanders still lives on as you can see below; where creative and patriotic New Zealanders such as this Morrinsville farmer, Mr Tony Gray have found a niche use for the wire in a more artistic context.


Ironically the vast majority of such wire was and is imported into New Zealand and this trend continues today this is not dissimilar to the iconic New Zealand ‘Kiwifruit’ which is in fact of Chinese origin. Shanghai Metal Corporation manufactures Galvanized steel wire in any number of customizable thicknesses making it suitable for any number of purposes and applications. To find out more or see how we can customize this material to your requirements your can visit our website here.

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Dominick F.//SMC Editor

Sources:100% PureNZ; MotorbikeHolidays; Waikato Times

What’s the best: Copper or Silver wire cable for your headphones?

Discussions whether copper wire cable is better for headphones than silver wire cable have been on numerous forums all over the internet for the last decade.

Searchers for the perfect sound are truly believers that silver cables condemned as “brighter” than copper cables is a myth.  According to them, if you were to connect a copper or a silver cable to an analyzer, you would find no difference in frequency response. Technology may be a great thing, but when it comes to measuring certain aspects of sound, frequency response curves are quite straightforward.

Silver platted copper

Others, however, could swear they definitely notice that silver is audibly brighter than copper. In this case, silver is the best conductor, when it comes to resistance. The resistance is determined by two major factors. The diameter (or gauge) of the wire and the material(s) used. The bigger the cross-sectional area and shorter the cable, the less resistance. Hence, silver cables are said to be the best conductor, hence better electrical conductivity and copper, the runner-up.

Copper and silver hybrid

Since no difference has been detected between copper and silver cables, discussions go further and people question why bother getting silver cables due to their higher prices. In fact, several wires of thinner gauge copper (at the exact length needed) yield less resistance and come out a lot cheaper than a (too long) fancy wire treated to this and that purity (a purity that a lot of the time has no basis in metallurgy since it can’t be attained).

Pure silver

What is your preference for headphone cables? Share your headphone experience with us!


Shanghai Metal Corporation offers copper is varying types including foil, cable, tube, coil, busbar, sheet, plate, in varying fittings and sizes. SMC also produces enameled wires, PTFE wires, low voltage cables, fiberglass copper wires for the security, telecommunications, electrical, commercial, industrial, and automotive industries. To find out more, please visit our Website or send your inquiry here. Our English speaking personnel will be more than pleased to help you. Follow us on  LinkedInTwitter, FacebookInstagram and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel. Or you could try our new mobile app by scanning our QR code.


Camilla G.//SMC Editor

Read more articles by this author here.

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Steel Wire Rope – Don’t Get It Twisted

photo (8)Wire ropes will literally provide a lifeline for hostile and demanding conditions in the industrial industry.  The increased demand on both man and materials such that certain equipment needs to be geared exactly to the specific purpose.

A wire rope is a type of cable that consists of several strands of steel wires that are twisted to form a metal helix.  Depending on the desired strength, the steel wires are twisted to form strands to complete a variety of different sizes.  Steel wire ropes are offered in a variety of markets including: construction, offshore rigging, marine industry and the ministry of defense divisions.

Determining what type of specification, steel wire ropes vary from different ranges.  It all depends on what kind of application and depending on the industry.  Due to corrosion, wear or fatigue a good understanding of steel wire rope design, characteristics, and failure modes can provide maintenance strategies to ensure the safety and reliability of the equipment.

Anatomy of steel wire rope:


Different cross-sectional views of wire rope
Different cross-sectional views of wire rope

Steel wire rope is used across a wide spectrum of industries for many applications.  They are primary used for extensive heavy duty lifting, hoisting cranes and are also used in mooring, towing and lifting systems.  A few examples include excavators, elevators, crane lifting, colliery steel, seaport, logging and oil field applications.


Gondola Lift
Gondola Lift
Construction Crane
Construction Crane



When you use steel wire rope as your primary industrial equipment, you can be assured that it will provide the highest safety, highest stability, excellent flexibility and long standing equipment that will never let you down.

SMC is proud to offer an extensive product range of wire ropes, cables and fittings.  If you are interested in viewing the different products we manufacture, click here. 

Written by:

Jovelle W. // SMC Editor

International Trade and Marketing Specialist