Reels Basic Info
Builtrite Reels - built right,  just for you!
Reel  - noun,  Commonly, a round device with a lip or flange used for storing and transporting flexible materials such as sewing
thread, wire and cable, fishing line, tubing and film. Also, the amount of the material wound on the device.

Building Reels - Our reels are made to our customers' specifications which are driven by the weight, strength and flexibility of the
product being wound on the reels.  Wood reels are larger, heavier and more durable than plywood reels. Wood reels are
generally used to distribute wire rope, cable and flexible tubing. Small plywood reels [12" to 15" flange] that are not exposed to the
elements often have fiber drums made from paper tubing. Our larger plywood reels [over 18" diameter flanges] generally have
drums made out of wood stave material.

Basic Dimensions -  A 48x30x24 reel would have:
    Flange = 48"diameter
    Traverse = 30" between the inside of the flanges
    Drum = 24" diameter

  1. Flange -The diameter of the outer "wheel" of the reel
  2. Traverse- The distance between the two flanges
  3. Drum - The diameter of the internal drum of the reel
  4. Overall width- The maximum width including flange thickness
  5. Arbor hole- The arbor hole accommodates the axle of the reel winder
    when the reel is being wound and unwound. Most wood reels have
    arbors of 3" to 5" in diameter. Some of our customers require arbors that
    are 2-1/4" to 6" inches in diameter.
  6. Drive hole- A drive hole[s] is often used to spin the reel during winding
    and unwinding. It is generally about 2" in diameter and located some
    distance from the arbor within the diameter of the drum.
  7. Drive hole radius- Distance from center of flange to center of drive hole
  8. Start hole radius- A start hole, if used, is where the material being
    wound is inserted to hold it taut as the winding begins
  9. Start hole width-Hole could be a slot depending on material to be
    wound on reel.
  10. Drum thickness-For wood drums this is generally either the thickness
    of a 2x4 stave or a  5/4x6 stave. For fiber or paper drums this varies.
  11. Bolts [or threaded rod] diameter- generally, 1/4",3/8", 1/2", or 5/8"
    depending on the size of the flange.
  12. Bolts radius- From center of flange. For drums made of staves the bolt
    radius generally is the center of the drum groove.
  13. Flange thickness- For wood reels, thickness is generally denoted by the
    number of layers and thickness of lumber layers [e.g., 3/2 is 3 layers of
    nominal 2x lumber].For plywood reels, it is the thickness of plywood
    used.  Most of our plywood reel flanges are 3/4" thick. Flange thickness
    determines the width of the drum groove.
  14. Center support- Thickness of center supports, if necessary.
Reel Side Elevation
Other Considerations
  • Drum material- Paper tubes, fiber tubes or drums made with wooden staves. Depending on the size of the drum, our
    wooden staves are generally 5/4 boards or 2x4 boards.
  • Metal arbor - We use metal plates to protect the arbor hole. Metal arbors can be as simple as a square with an arbor hole
    in the middle or they can have additional support in the form of a short section of steel pipe  welded to the inside of the
    metal plate.
  • Delicate material- Products such as fiber optic cable or divers' flexible tubing with breathing and communications
    components cannot be wound in a tight circle. Since they need a large gentle arc they would have a large drum dimension
    relative to the flange size. We can make reels any size you need.
  • Exposure to the elements- If the wound reel is going to be exposed to the elements during transportation and/or storage
    we recommend a wood reel.
  • Center support- In large reels [especially ones with a long traverse] or ones carrying significant weight we commonly use
    center supports on the inside of the drum. The center support can be a simple cross of stave material or a flange that fits
    snugly on the inside of the drum.
Copyright © 2007 Builtrite Reels Houston TX
Reel Top Elevation
Builtrite Reel & Lumber
305 Hambrick Road
Houston, TX 77060
Phone: 281-447-0447
Fax: 281-383-9409