Lead-free cable glands 

The use of lead in commercial and industrial products has declined significantly over the past few decades. So far, however, small amounts of lead are still permitted. For example, the RoHS directive currently allows up to 4% lead content in copper alloys such as brass, the material that is used in SKINTOP® and SKINDICHT® brass fittings. But this exemption formally expired on July 21, 2021. The decision on the extension by the EU Commission is still pending. The outcome is still uncertain.

As early as 2020, LAPP was the first manufacturer worldwide to present cable glands in a lead-free brass version. Take the chance together with us and rely on sustainable and therefore safe cable glands without lead at an early stage.

What is a lead-free cable gland?

Lead-free cable glands are also cable glands. Only these were manufactured without the previously permitted and customary two to four percent lead content as an admixture in the brass.

Lead-free cable glands from LAPP can be identified by the designation "LF" (Lead-Free). For you this means: You receive our usual and common cable glands, such as the SKINTOP® MS-M and MS-SC-M or our counter nut SKINDICHT® SM-M , with the same performance, also as lead-free versions.

Since the start a little more than a year ago, we have firmly integrated lead-free brass into our LAPP life, successfully mastered the challenge of alternative materials and will gradually add lead-free variants to other product families for you.

As the world market leader for integrated cable and connection solutions, we did not wait, we were the first manufacturer in the world to establish cable glands made of lead-free brass for you at an early stage and we have expanded the lead-free product portfolio for you to this day.

As always, proactive instead of reactive - so that you can react early and sustainably to upcoming changes.

SKINTOP® MS-M 

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SKINTOP® MS-SC-M

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 SKINDICHT® SM-M

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SKINTOP® cable glands 

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What are REACH and RoHS?

In order to protect people, animals and the environment, various regulations such as RoHS and REACH regulate the prohibition of substances and chemicals. These guidelines also determine the permissible lead content for copper alloys.

What is REACH?

The “Regulation (EC) No. 1907/2006 on the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH)”, known colloquially as the REACH Regulation, has been in force since 2007 and is not just one of the most modern and at the same time strictest chemical laws. It is also a very detailed set of rules, for example for placing chemicals on the market and especially for regulating substances with very worrying properties and high risks for humans or the environment.

In 2018 lead was placed on the list of substances of very high concern (SVHC list: Substance of Very High Concern). According to Article 33 of the REACH regulation, brass is also required to provide information along the entire supply chain. If semi-finished products or other products are made from copper alloys that contain more than 0.1% lead, this must be indicated on delivery.

What is RoHS?

RoHS is Directive 2011/65 / EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of June 8, 2011 on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment.

The aim of the RoHS directive (similar to the REACH regulation) is to minimize the entry of dangerous substances into the environment. The guideline serves worldwide as a guide for the respective regional ordinances.

Since July 21, 2021, the previously applicable exemption 6c Annex III of the European RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) regulation has formally expired.

Various market players have applied for an extension of this exemption for lead in advance. 

«July 21, 2021 is the deadline for the time being. Existing exceptions remain valid until the EU Commission has decided on the renewal application. »

If there is no extension of the deadline, a transition period of 12-18 months applies from the time the application is processed by the EU Commission. According to this, even with brass, the maximum concentration of 0.1% lead in the material defined in the REACH regulation must not be exceeded.


What are the challenges in manufacturing products with lead-free metals?

The addition of lead to copper alloys, including brass, ensures good chip breaking and easy lubrication. This reduces the friction and consequently also the generation of heat during the manufacture of cable glands. The low material hardness of brass with the addition of lead is another advantage that ensures quick and easy processing.

The production of cable glands from lead-free materials and the procurement of the raw material were therefore associated with complex process adjustments and higher costs. The availability of lead-free brass materials is, as of now, often not given the same coverage. The machining behavior when processing lead-free materials is different from those with the addition of lead in the material. This means that chip evacuation during production is a challenge, especially when both variants of the semi-finished products are used in production.

Additional expenses, all of which cause higher costs and, especially in the transition period, inevitably affect the prices of the lead-free product variants.

How do lead-free cable glands differ?

Lead-free cable glands do not differ optically from those made from leaded brass.

The product properties of lead-free and lead-containing cable glands are also comparable. Both the internal LAPP laboratory and external testing institutes have confirmed:

  • Mechanical properties,
  • Corrosion resistance as well
  • EMC properties are comparable.

Both variants of the LAPP cable glands are also dust-tight in accordance with IP 68 and protected against continuous submersion up to a maximum of 10 bar and 100 meters of water for a maximum of 30 minutes.
Lead-free cable glands are, like the lead-containing cable glands, in the metric sizes M12 to M63 immediately available from stock.

Which areas of application and surrounding areas are there?

Whenever the RoHS directive and the REACH directive for lead play a role in relation to your machines or systems, our lead-free cable glands are a good choice for you.

Especially if you manufacture or operate machines with long planning times or life cycles, it makes sense to rely on components that do without lead and are decoupled from any currently valid and future prohibitions of RoHS or REACH regulations.

In view of international sales markets or value chains and legislation, forward-looking, sustainable action can also have a worthwhile effect on your planning.

How do you recognize lead-free cable glands at LAPP?

When selecting lead-free cable glands, you should pay attention to the designation "LF" in the article numbers of our products.

Products with this addition are lead-free alternatives to the classic cable glands, with otherwise the same product properties.

With our lead-free cable glands you are therefore always on the safe side and can plan sustainably and long-term, even with future adjustments to the regulations.