Monday, December 20, 2010

Housing starts are UP

Let's not overlook any positive news in housing starts. A report just out shows that new home construction starts are on the increase.

"Privately-owned housing starts in November were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 555,000 — 3.9 percent above the revised October estimate, according to the Commerce Dept.
Single-family housing starts in November were at an annual rate of 465,000, up 6.9 percent from the revised October figure of 435,000. The November rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 72,000. "

The details of the report show that increases were substantial in the high wind regions. Jacksonville, NC had the best increase of all US cities. More housing means more demand for high wind uplift protection from hurricane winds. And, more demand for Cable-Tite brand cable tie down systems. For those of you following this Blog, make sure you are engineering Cable-Tite into your new home construction.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Don't eliminate the mortgage tax deduction

You may not know that there is a proposal to eliminate the mortgage tax deduction. This is among the efforts to eliminate all tax deductions. As for the home builders and the construction industry, the mortgage tax deduction is critical for the growth of this market segment. As I have mentioned in previous blogs, we support new home construction. It is one tradition that has meant economical growth for decades. At Cable-tite, we do not want to see this deduction eliminated, and support NAHB and many other agencies who are fighting this proposal. Please do you part to let it be known that we need to keep the home owner mortgage deduction! The consequences would be devastating for home owners, the housing market and the nation’s economy.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The case FOR home ownership

TIME magazine published a story in Sept 6, 2010 issue about the loss of the American dream of home ownership. Not only was it a discouraging article, it was wrong! There is nothing more central to the American way of life than home ownership, and that dream is just as alive today as ever. Young couples can take advantage of the lower interest rates to make home ownership affordable. It gives them a root for growing their families and establishing a stable community.

TIME looked at home ownership as an investment, from a financial side. True that prices haven't escalated as in the past, but it is still a sound investment. A home is far more than a financial investment. It is an investment in the family, which still today, is the American Dream.

Home building has a strong economic impact on the local economy. This is why Obama and the economic stimulus package gives rebates and tax credits to new buyers. The growth of new home construction, some say, will have the greatest impact on overall American economic recovery. Home owners paying real estate taxes are the primary source of local government funds. More home owners, more money in the local ecomony for better schools, better roads, better community!

Studies show that home owners are keeping their houses longer. Therefore, it would make more sense to build a better, more secure home. Spend a few extra dollars to build beyond codes. that includes adding the best hurricane tie-down system available, Cable-Tite. It was designed by engineers to exceed construction codes for protection from high wind uplift by using cables attached from the top plate to the anchor bolts for maximum protection.

Buy a new home with confidence about your investment in your family and your future, and insist on Cable-Tite uplift protection.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Dale Returns.....

Some of you are probably wondering why there haven't been any recent blogs about the goings-on at Cable-tite. I was gone for a few months working on another unrelated project. But, alas.....I'm back, and continuing to post about all the benefits of using the Cable-tite system of hurricane tie-downs for new home construction uplift protection in high wind regions. I will continue to tout the benefits and ease of using Cable-tite over traditional hurricane clips or threaded rods. Your comments are always welcome whether you are a home owner, new home builder, an architect, or an engineer. "Cable-tite - exceeding codes"

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Brian Harris Homes - block foundations

From time to time we have questions about using Cable-tite as hurricane and high wind tie-down protection with block foundations. There is a little more work to anchor the top plate to the foundation anchor bolts, but it can be done.

I recently worked with Matt Harris at Brian Harris Homes, a new home builder in middle Tennessee. One thing I liked that Harris did was core fill the block to the footer. This offers much better hold down value than blocks with only the top block filled.

After the house was framed and roofed, I went to the crawl space and installed the anchor nut and cap. I drilled a 3/8 hole for the cable, then attached it to the top plate as standard installation. I crawled back under the house and locked the Cable-tite firmly in place.

NOTE: See the small blue electrical wire sticking through the floor above the drill in the photo above? I drilled a small 1/8" hole in the subfloor and used the blue wire to mark my place. Upstairs, I drilled the 3/8" hole for the cable. This is much easier when working in a small crawl space.
In this photo of the finished installation, note that the anchor nut, cap and cable vise are not seen. They are in the crawl space below.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Texas ranch house update

A In January, I had the privilege of working with an Austin TX builder and a home owner. We installed Cable-Tite in a ranch house. It was a magnificent home site, and a well-designed house.
Here are some photos of the house in May, and it's coming along quite nicely.
The first photo shows columns on the back of the house with lights installed in them. There are two Cable-Tite hurricane tie-down systems in each column. I installed them after the columns were framed. The beauty of Cable-Tite is that everything is hidden inside the walls. No one sees the uplift protection Cable-Tite offers, but the home owner feels safe knowing they are there.
The second photo shows small columns on the front porch. There is a 4x4 post holding the roof, and Cable-Tite in installed beside it to an anchor bolt. The post hold the roof up, and the cable holds the roof down. The tension of approximately 600 lbs. holds the cable, so the system is in constant compression, on a sunny day like this day, or in high-winds and stormy weather.
In addition to Cable-Tite throughout the perimeter walls for the house, there are metal hurricane clips securing every rafter to the top plate.
Thanks to the home owner, the builder, the engineer, and the architect for using Cable-Tite to exceed the construction codes for hurricane tie-down systems.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A better foundation!

Building a better foundation is the philosophy of Matt Harris with Harris Homes, new home builders. Cable-tite is working with him to install our hurricane and high wind tie-down systems in a new home for Tonya and Chaz Jetton.

My big complaint has been that most of the time the anchor bolt is only secured in the top block of the foundation. This makes the weakest part of the tie-downs the mortar joint between the top block and the one below it. As you can see in the right photo above, the mason is filling the entire cell with mortar, all the way to the footer. He also uses an 18" anchor bolt which secures it to the second block. This creates a much better foundation with which to attach the Cable-tite anchor nut. For Cable-tite to work correctly, the elements surrounding installation need to be strong. Harris believes the same, and proves it by filling the block. Thanks! Cable-tite will attach to the anchor bolt then connect to the top plate for the ultimate in uplift protection.

In the left photo you will notice that some of the anchor bolts are not perfectly straight. That is not a problem for Cable-tite because of the flexibility of the cable. It would not work with threaded rods.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Floods in Tennessee - May 1-2

For those reading this blog living in Tennessee, you know all about "The Flood" of 2010. Very difficult to absorb and comprehend. Our hearts go out to those who had losses, and wish them Godspeed in their recovery.

On Saturday afternoon the non-stop broadcast showed a spot on the weather map and told those residents living near there to expect "shear winds" as strong as 100 MPH. The weatherman followed that warning for an hour or so as these high winds traveled across middle Tennessee.

So many new home builders, architects, and engineers say that Cable-Tite is not needed in the "non" wind zones, and so often I say "what if". This weekend that "what if" came true. Winds at 100 MPH are the same as a Category 2 hurricane. Codes in non wind regions do not require tie-downs. Even though this is somewhat rare, what if it were your house in the path shown on that weather map? Wouldn't you be thankful your builder installed Cable-Tite.

Middle Tennessee locals will recall the video of the school portable floating down Interstate 24 near Bell Road. WOW!!!! If they had used Cable-Tite to anchor it to it's foundation, it would not have floated away.

If you are reading this and building outside the high-wind regions of the US, please.....consider Cable-Tite for your safety.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

WKRN Channel 2 News story

(video on website)

GALLATIN, Tenn. - A Gallatin company has designed a system that may keep homes in one piece during high winds.
Cable-Tite installs high tension cables within the walls of new construction homes. The cables are anchored in the foundation and tied to the roof.
"What we're trying to do is hold the roof to the foundation," Cable-Tite's Dale Richardson explained. "We want to keep the square of the top plate and the bottom plate and the walls as a cube and hold it together."
The science behind Cable-Tite is that if the home is kept squared, with the roof intact, the construction can withstand higher sustained winds and wind gusts.
Richardson said, "When you have high winds, it's trying to push the roof off the top of the house and when the roof goes up, then the walls fall over."
Cable-Tite has only been in business for two years and has done most of its work so far along the Gulf Coast and in Houston, Texas.
As for costs, according to Richardson, in "most houses, it's going to be maybe 1% of the total cost, if you're talking a $200,000 home, maybe $1,200 to $1,500."
Gallatin builder Fred Yates told News 2 he wouldn't think of building another house without Cable-Tite.
He's currently including the system in a massive upper-scale home on Old Hickory Lake.
"Anytime [the wind] starts whipping up, you can see it can get under that roof and lift it up," he said. "If you don't have something holding it down, it can tear it right off."
Yates said he can see the system gaining popularity quickly among other builders who build upscale homes, and once others see the benefit, the cable system will be in demand in mid-priced houses.
"This system will probably not withstand a Category 5 [Hurricane], but nothing will, but the peripheral winds, the ones that are 60, 70, 90 miles per hour, you don't have a problem," he said. "It'll hold it down.
Richardson said the system has been lab tested to withstand winds of up to 90 miles per hour, but so far, none of the homes where the system has been installed have been tested by Mother Nature's highest winds.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Got the Blues????

Today's blog is a little different, but informative. As you know, Gallatin, TN is the home of Cable-Tite. But did you know Clarksdale, Mississippi is the home of the Blues. Check it out!

And if you love the blues, you will love Shack Up Inn in Clarksdale. Each room is a refurbished cabin, rugged on the outside as in by gone days, but clean, comfortable, and cozy inside. It's a great weekend getaway to listen to some authentic blues music played all over town. And spend the night in a cabin.

Now, we can add "safe" to the description. Recently they added Cable-Tite to the newly constructed cabins. You will notice in the photo that the cabins are sitting on piers. The owners were concerned about uplift protection from high winds and hurricanes. They contacted us and we worked out a plan for Cable-Tite usage to tie-down the cabins. Anchor bolts were installed into concrete beside the piers, and cable extended to the top plate. The flexibility of Cable-Tite makes it the only hurricane tie-down system that would meet construction codes for uplift protection.

Visit Clarksdale and the Shack Up Inn. Stick your head under the cabins and see the Cable-Tite system. Hopefully, you won't need it, but just in case, you know it's there. At the Shack Up Inn or at your house.......Cable-Tite offers peace of mind. (sorry, we don't offer "Blues")

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

IAPMO Evaluation Report - News Release


Gallatin, TN – On March 1, 2010 the IAPMO Certification Board issued an Evaluation Report which certifies that Cable-Tite meets the International Building Code for residential wood-frame construction in high-wind regions. IAPMO reviewed the certified Smith-Emery Laboratories test results with their engineering staff and determined that Cable-Tite’s claim as a hurricane hold-down system was true. The report, number 0170, is available to read online at

New home builders continue to search for the most robust system for protection from uplift caused by high winds. There is a good, better, and best approach for what they choose. The metal hurricane clips are a good system that allows for minimum protection. The threaded rods offer better protection but are difficult to install. The best system is the “Cable-Tite” system that uses cables to create a continuous path from the roof to the foundation.

“Other current methods are time consuming and expensive. Cable-Tite is an easy system to install, in about half the time, and offers better protection”, says Dale Richardson, Business Development Director at Cable-Tite. “The high-strength steel cable is attached to the top plate and held securely in place with our patented cam locking cap and nut screwed to the concrete embedded anchor bolt.”

With the recent certification, engineers, builders, codes inspectors, and ultimately, home owners can request and use Cable-Tite Tie-Down Systems with confidence.

Monday, March 1, 2010


YEAH!!!!!!!!!!! Today our "official" Evaluation Report came, Report #0170, and is posted on our website. It is amazing that it has taken our own in-house testing during 2008, Smith-Emery Laboratory testing in April 2009, and further review and scrutiny until today.....March 1, 2010 to receive an "official" response from IAPMO, an Evaluation Service. Nevertheless, the claim that we made in the beginning has now verified. Cable-tite has been dissected many ways to get the same conclusion.....Cable-Tite is the best, most robust system for anchor tie downs of your new home to offer high wind protection typical of a hurricane over 150 MPH. It meets and exceeds all construction codes for hurricane tie-down systems in the high wind regions for uplift protection.

Designed, tested, proven, and today.....stamped OFFICIAL!

Monday, February 15, 2010

More Cable-tite 101 Tips

This is a Cable-tite tip for installing Cable-tite on a porch or deck or in any area that doesn't have a traditional top plate.

In this house being built by Ronald Deutch shown at the left, there were 2 - 2x12's used to support the roof rafters. They are sitting on top of a site-built column. We drilled a 1/2" hole in the crack between the two 2x12's for the cable to install between the anchor bolts and the top plate. The problem in this case was the inability to drill a one inch hole for the cable vise to sit. The roof was already constructed and there wasn't room for a drill.

We found two scraps of 2x4 and nailed them together. Then, drilled a one inch hole in them. They fit perfectly on top of the 2x12's and allowed the vise and steel top plate to sit properly. Once the cable was locked it was installed correctly.

This is yet another reason Cable-tite is the preferred cable tie-down system for builders who need uplift protection from straight-line and hurricane winds in high wind zone areas. The system is flexible on site, and didn't add more than 5 minutes to the installation.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Texas Hill Country

80 Cable-tite in Texas Ranch Home

Cable-tite just completed installation of 80 high-wind tie-downs in the Texas Hill Country new home of Ronald Deutch. Mr. Deutch chose Cable-tite for his uplift protection after studying several systems on the internet. This 3500+ sq ft. ranch style house sits on a hilltop and he felt he needed more than hurricane clips or threaded rods. He was glad to have a flexible cable system that adjusted easily to the framing of the house. Mr. Deutch's house far exceeds construction codes. It's encouraging to work with a person that understands the need for a safe and secure home by constructing a home much better than it "has" to be. My motto "Build Beyond Codes" and that's when Cable-tite excells.

I worked with Carlos Tellez and Jose of Tellez Remodeling and showed them how Cable-tite is installed. After approximately 30 mins, they were able to install them on their own. When we say this is easy and quick to install, we mean it. We averaged installing one every 11 mins. This included adding or replacing some anchor bolts.
Thanks to everyone involved in this went GREAT, and we all enjoyed working together. Yippee Ki-Yea