Cleaving Fiber Optic Cables

Before two fiber optic cables can be spliced together, they must be cut so that the two surfaces being joined together are completely flat. Cleaving is the process used to cut the optical fibers so that they joint together properly when spliced.

Preparing Fibers for Cleaving

Cable Cutters

Before the fiber can be cleaved and spliced back together, the damaged portion of the cable must be cut out. The High Leverage Cable Cutters can be used to cut out the damaged portion of the cable.

The optical fiber is protected by a number of jackets and sleeves. These must be removed from the region where the fiber is to be cleaved. This process is much like stripping the jacket off a normal electrical wire.


If the cable is round, the outer jacket of the fiber optic cable is removed using the Round Cable Stripper. If the cable is flat or is a ribbon cable, the outer jacket can be removed using the SmartStrip.

Kevlar Scissors

Fiber optic cables often have protective sheaths or strength members inside the outer jacket. These protective coverings can consist of Kevlar, aramid yarn, and various types of plastic.The Kevlar Scissors can be used to cut off these protective coverings.

Fiber Optic Strippers

Each individual fiber core is typically wrapped in a 1.6-3mm jacket, a 600-900 micron buffer coating, a 250 micron soft coating, and a 125 micron cladding. The Fiber Optic Strippers are used to strip off the outer jacket, the 600-900 micron buffer coating, and the 250 micron coating, leaving only the cladding and fiber core. The Fiber Optic Strippers are used in the same manner as normal wire strippers. Align the fiber in the proper stripper slot, clamp down the strippers, and pull the strippers along the length of the fiber to remove the jacking or coating. Care must be taken while stripping the fiber so that the fiber is not damaged.

Optic Prep Wipes

Any residue or gel must be wiped off the fiber prior to cleaving. Use the Optic Prep wipes to clean the bare fiber. Wipe down the length of the fiber and gently shake the fiber to remove any excess alcohol from the wipes.

Steel Member Fusion Splice Sleeves

To finish preparing the fiber for splicing, slip a Steel Member Fusion Splice sleeve over the fiber. After the fiber has been spliced, this sleeve will be heat shrunk around the joint for protection.

Fiber Optic Cleaver

Now the fiber is ready for cleaving. Load the cleaver by pushing the silver panel until it locks into place. Align the glass fiber with the slot in the Cleaver. Close the cleaver to cut the fiber. The cleaver produces a perfectly straight cut by nicking the fiber, then stretching it so that it breaks along the crack.


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