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I have thin, variable diameter PVC wires that run along a metal housing. Problem being, they can get pulled on and disconnect. I want to bond them down to the metal housing as a sort of strain relief but have not had success. There are holes in the metal so a glue would have to be pretty viscous. Taping over (tried VHB, teflon) still allows them to move around under the tape and instant adhesives (tried hot melt, acrylic) peel. Accepting all suggestions, and thanks in advance!

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  • $\begingroup$ Please provide a picture or diagram of the arrangement. Are the wires on the outside or inside? How stiff are they? What kind of abuse are they subject to? Does the environment get hot or wet? $\endgroup$ – Drew Nov 12 '19 at 20:30
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the way this is usually accomplished in practice is to use a zip tie anchor which consists of a plastic square with a loop in it through which a zip tie can be threaded. the bottom surface of the square has a piece of doublesticky foam tape (3M brand) on it. When you have the anchor positioned where you need it, you peel the backing paper off the doublesticky and smush it down onto the cabinet. Then you affix the wire bundle in place by running a zip tie around the bundle and through the loop on the top of the anchor, and zip it down tight.

These anchors are usually spaced 6 to 12 inches apart and if stuck onto a clean surface, they will adhere so tightly that a screwdriver is needed to pry them free.

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  • $\begingroup$ There are also screw on zip tie anchors if you want a more rugged connection to your metal housing. $\endgroup$ – William Hird Jun 16 '19 at 0:45
  • $\begingroup$ yep yep. lots of options. $\endgroup$ – niels nielsen Jun 16 '19 at 4:51
  • $\begingroup$ Industrial engineer here. I've never had good luck with those adhesive anchors. They seems strong as hell, but you come back 2 months later and they're all detached. $\endgroup$ – Drew Nov 12 '19 at 20:28
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The best solution for adhering wires to things is to use rigidly attached anchor points, and then zip ties. Anchors that are part of the case, or are attached with screws are best. As I said in a comment, I haven't had good luck with those adhesive rectangle anchors. They're initially very strong, but after a few months I've seen them come dislodged by even the weight of a single Ethernet cable.

Examples of good mounting hardware:

Cable tie mounts enter image description here

P-Straps enter image description here

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If you don't want to use a mechanical fastener, I would suggest encapsulating them, by wrapping a thick adhesive around them and sticking it to the base material. You might try Sugru moldable silicone putty, or just a very thick (and non-corrosive!) RTV silicone.

Make sure to prepare surfaces well! Even slight fingerprints will trash most adhesive bond strengths!

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