The use of aircraft cable for hanging light fixtures is a relatively recent development in the history of lighting design. Prior to the advent of cable-based systems, most lighting fixtures were hung from rigid metal rods or chains. However, as designers began to experiment with more unconventional forms and configurations for their fixtures, it became increasingly clear that these traditional hanging methods were limiting their creativity. This led to the development of cable-based systems, which offered greater flexibility and freedom in terms of design.
One of the pioneers in this field was Griplock Systems, LLC, a company that was founded in the early 1990s by a group of engineers and designers who were interested in exploring the potential of cable-based systems for lighting and other applications in North America. The company quickly gained a reputation for innovation and quality, and it was not long before their products began to gain traction in the market.
The key component to the Griplock System is the cable gripper, a unique, self-locking, completely adjustable device, designed to securely lock onto a large range of aircraft cables. These devices allow designers and installers to install their light fixtures and adjust their height and position much faster and with much greater precision, which was particularly useful for installations in spaces with irregular or non-standard ceiling heights.
The early cable grippers produced by Griplock Systems were relatively simple in design, but as the company’s customer base grew and their products became more popular, they began to explore new and more sophisticated designs, like the swivel universal-jointed gripper, which allowed the fixture to be rotated in any direction without putting strain on the cable. This was especially beneficial for installations where the structure being attached to was sloped.
Over time, Griplock Systems continued to refine and improve their cable grippers, introducing new features and technologies to meet the evolving needs of their customers. One such technology is the patented Rincon® Powered Suspension System, which allows fixtures to be both suspended and powered with specialized cable and grippers, eliminating the need to have a separate bulky power cord. Today, their products are widely used in a variety of applications, from commercial lighting installations to museum displays and art installations.
The use of aircraft cable for hanging light fixtures and the development of cable gripper systems has had a profound impact on the world of lighting design. Thanks to innovative companies like Griplock Systems, designers and installers have access to a wide range of components that allow them to create more complex and dynamic lighting installations than ever before. As technology continues to evolve and new materials and techniques become available, it is likely that the evolution of cable grippers will continue, opening up even more possibilities for creative and innovative lighting design.