From Plywood To Polycarbonate Sheet

People in the plastics industry have known for over 50 years that Polycarbonate Sheets are tough. This clear plastic sheet material is commonly used to replace window glazing. The best known property for this sheet materials is that it is break resistant, or in many cases, unbreakable. This is a great benefit for areas where window glass is broken easily.

Recently some cities have passed ordinances to change out the plywood window coverings on abandoned homes, and they are installing clear polycarbonate sheets instead. This is a very attractive replacement, and is a big step in fighting the blight of abandoned homes.

Polycarbonate is produced under several trade names, including Covestro Makrolon®, SABIC Lexan®, Cyrolon®, Zelux®, Tuffak® and many more. These materials are available in sheets, plate, slab, bar and rod.

Read more on this material below.

Cities moving from Plywood to Polycarbonate Sheet Protection for abandoned homes why use makrolon polycarbonate sheet to replace plywood? Why Use Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet To Replace Plywood? Replacing Plywood with Clear Polycarbonate sheets PR

Excerpt from AZCentral, The Arizona Republic:

Property owners and banks in Phoenix had begun outfitting windows with sheets of polycarbonate, a thin, nearly indestructible plastic that mirrors the appearance of glass.

And last month, the city became among the first in the U.S. to make polycarbonate windows a matter of municipal law.

Phoenix now requires all window and door openings visible from the street to be secured with the material if the structure has been unoccupied for more than 90 days. The 90-day provision is also new, replacing the previous deadline of 180 days. The measures were the result of an abandoned buildings task force that Gallego spearheaded.

Read the rest of the story, and see Phoenix City Councilman Michael Nowakowski and City Manager Ed Zuercher attempt to break a polycarbonate window in Phoenix: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/phoenix/2015/04/02/phoenix-fights-blight-plastic-windows/70826784/

Durham County, North Carolina also made a change:

By Taylor Knopf, tknopf@newsobserver.com

No one likes living next to abandoned buildings with boarded up doors or windows. So the city of Durham started replacing the plywood eyesores with a clear, durable plastic.

The city is working to reduce the number of abandoned houses by helping owners fix them up. But for houses that still need boarding up, the city has found that plastic not only improves the overall appearance of a neighborhood, it may reduce crime by discouraging squatters and making it easier for police to see inside vacant buildings.

“I can’t stress enough how the elimination of the boards has a tremendous positive impact on neighborhoods and communities,” said Faith Gardner, housing code administrator of the city’s department of neighborhood improvement services.

Read more here: http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/counties/durham-county/article20778429.html#storylink=cpy

These communities have fought back against vandalism and crime, as well as enhanced the value of local homes by changing from Plywood to Clear Polycarbonate Sheets. This super tough Bullet resistant Polycarbonate Sheet why use makrolon polycarbonate sheet to replace plywood? Why Use Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet To Replace Plywood? polycarbonate sheet riot shieldsglazing grade clear Polycarbonate Sheet material is the same kind of material that Police Officers use for face shields and banks are using for bullet resistant glazing.

The premier manufacturer of Polycarbonate Sheet in the USA is Covestro (formerly Bayer MaterialScience), and they produce Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet. Polycarbonate is also available in rod and thick plate for machined parts.

Consider using Polycarbonate sheet for your next glazing material.


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Topic: Plywood to Polycarbonate Sheet

Why Plastic Materials Are Unfairly Blamed

Plastics have been around for over a century now, and are used in almost every industry and application. The problem is that society has made the plastics industry the poster child for waste, trash and pollution. This is unfair, and factually incorrect.

Plastic materials are lighter, cost less to produce, use less electrical power to produce, and are safer for use. It is not new phenomenon that a material or product, once used, gets thrown away. This is the normal life cycle of many materials. Some inexpensive plastic materials used in consumer goods are made to throw away once the item has been purchased. Things like the indestructible packing we fight on kids toys, the cheap plastic sporks from restaurants, the prolific plastic water bottles and of course, the plastic grocery bags. All of these materials are 100% recyclable, the hitch is that it requires a little effort to recycle.

Are Plastic Materials The Cause?

On the positive side, the products that plastic currently replaces are much larger, heavier and generally cost more to produce, and use more energy to produce. This means, that the large amount of plastics that are not being properly disposed of, are replacing much larger quantities of materials that would not be recycled. I still remember times when I was a kid, and seeing tin cans in the lakes and rivers when out Why Plastic Materials Get A Bad Reputation Why Plastic Materials Get A Bad Reputation Recycled Furniture made of HDPE milk jugs and detergent bottlesfishing. People polluting with their trash is not a new thing, now it is just a different group of materials.

Thermoplastic plastic materials are recyclable, and can be used over and over again. Generally, the recycled product would not be for a Food or Medical application. A common use of recycled plastic is with the collected milk jugs and detergent bottles, both HDPE, can be ground and turned into plastic lumber. The plastic lumber can be used to replace standard wood products for decks and outdoor furniture, and it will last for 15 – 20 years with no maintenance or painting. The cost savings and reduced use of natural resources for this one product can be staggering. The color doesn’t fade, it wood won’t split or crack, and it continues to look good for up to two decades.

Our recent article, “Plastic Material Bad Reputation – How did we get here?“, we discuss the factors that have lead to the ‘throw away’ society that we have become. Much of this bad reputation is for products that are designed as one use and then designed to be thrown away. So, if we are to change the bad reputation, companies need to change this design flaw, and start using materials for applications that can be reused easily.

If we can minimize the use of throw away plastics, and recycle the plastic material once we are done with it, we can help to limit plastic in land fills.plastic materials don't pollute, people pollute. Why Plastic Materials Get A Bad Reputation Why Plastic Materials Get A Bad Reputation 91cc 59ea

The blame for plastic pollution should be placed…on people. The plastic is not the cause of the problem, it is the litter-bug and irresponsible individuals that trash our planet. How do the plastic bottles and grocery bags end up in the ocean. They certainly don’t throw themselves in to the ocean, it is lack of responsibility and negligent behavior.

It really only takes a couple of seconds to throw something into a recycle bin. Even better would be to reuse the plastic bottles or plastic bags. Plastic materials are not the problem, empathetic people are the problem.

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Topic: Plastic Materials Get Bad Reputation Unfairly

PTFE Sheet versus UHMW SheetsUHMW sheet compared with PTFE sheet Thread Seal Tape UHMW Sheet compared to PTFE Sheet (TFE sheets) UHMW Sheet compared to PTFE Sheet (TFE sheets) ptfe thread sealant

UHMW (Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene) and PTFE Sheet (PolyTetraFlouroEthylene) are very similar materials, and yet very different at the same time. They both possess certain characteristics that make them similar to each other. For instance, they both have a very low co-efficient of friction, which means they are great for sliding applications and are easy to machine.

Both of these materials are very resistant to chemicals such as chlorine and some acids and have great wear resistance. They have low to no water absorption. They also are FDA approved for handling food. PTFE and UHMW Polyethylene are both nearly impossible to bond (without treatment) and are susceptible to sagging under tensile load which is called ‘creep’. These both have very low coefficient of friction and work well for wear strips, slide pads and truck liners to make it easy to empty. These two materials are different in many ways also, and choosing between the two materials for a specific job is critical.

Below are a few examples of how these two materials are different.

1. UHMW is a polyolefin and PTFE is a fluoropolymer. Polyolefins are double bonded carbon while Fluoropolymers are carbon and fluorine bonded. UHMW is a monomer which is consisted of one atom that will bond with another to form a polymer. PTFE is a polymer which is made up of a repeating chain of monomers.UHMW Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene Truck Lining UHMW Sheet compared to PTFE Sheet (TFE sheets) UHMW Sheet compared to PTFE Sheet (TFE sheets) uhmw truck lining

2. PTFE has a higher temperature range than UHMW. The PTFE has a continuous use temperature of 500 degrees F. UHMW is much lower with a continuous use temperature of 200 degrees F and a melting point of 271 degrees F. The UHMW starts to become become soft at higher temperatures while the PTFE is much more resistant and with a melting point of 621 degrees F.

3. UHMW has higher abrasion resistance than PTFE. Both have great impact and wear resistance but because of UHMW having a molecular weight between 2-6 million making it the best wear resistance material in the plastic family, it makes it ideal to take wear and impact over a wider range and longer period of time without losing its properties.

4. UHMW has a much lower density than PTFE. This makes UHMW able to float in water while Fluoropolymers are significantly heavier (almost twice the density of UHMW) and would sink.

5. PTFE has excellent electrical and thermal properties. The virgin grade of PTFE is a better insulator and exhibits better electrical properties which can be used in radio frequencies, cables and circuit boards while UHMW cannot.

6. UHMW is much less expensive than the Fluoropolymers. Especially recently, PTFE has become harder to come by, and during the last 18 months there has been a global shortage of a key raw material called fluorspar that is used to make all Fluoropolymer materials. The ability to take lots of wear and tear and requiring low long term maintenance makes UHMW more cost effective.

7. The standard color of PTFE is Natural, which is a dense white. The UHMW comes in Natural (a deep milky white) or Black. The UHMW can be produced in many colors, and minimums are rather low. To obtain PTFE in colors is much more difficult, and would also have large minimum orders.

Click here for data sheet comparisons for each material…

UHMW Sheet and Rod Data

PTFE Sheet and Rod Data

Both the UHMW and the PTFE are available as sheet, sheets, sheeting, slab, bar, strip, panels, film, round rod, rods and block. Contact us for assistance with these or other shapes.

PTFE Sheeting Properties

  • Specific Gravity D792 2.14 – 2.24
  • Tensile Strength Yield D638 2,500 – 6,000UHMW Polyethylene Timing Roller UHMW Sheet compared to PTFE Sheet (TFE sheets) UHMW Sheet compared to PTFE Sheet (TFE sheets) UHMW timing roller
  • Tensile Modulus D638 80,000
  • Izod Impact – Notched D256 3.0
  • Hardness – Rockwell D785 D50 – D65
  • Deflection Temp @ 264psi D648 150
  • Deflection Temp @ 66 psi D648 250
  • Co. Thermal Expansion D696 5.5X10-5

UHMW Sheeting Properties

  • Specific Gravity D792 .93 – .94
  • Tensile Strength Yield D638 6,800
  • Coefficient of Friction – Static D1894 .25
  • Izod Impact – Notched D256 No Break
  • Hardness – Rockwell D785 R64
  • Vicat Softening Temp D1525 260
  • Deflection Temp @ 66 psi D648 174
  • Co. Thermal Expansion D696 11.0X10-5

These are just some examples of plastic materials being similar, and yet having very different properties. The PTFE Sheet and UHMW Sheet may appear very similar in color and can be used for some of the same applications, but when needed for a specific use or property needed, one might be dramatically better than the other. As the old saying goes, “You should never judge a book by its cover” and the same is true with plastic. Review the properties and test prior to choosing a final material for your application.

Call us for further assistance at 866-832-9315, or click here to contact us with your questions.

Additional Information About UHMW Sheets or Rod Here.

Additional Information About The Discovery Of PTFE Sheet and Rod by Dupont Here

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Topic: UHMW Sheet and PTFE Sheet – A Comparison

PVC Sheet and PVC Panels Go Way Beyond Pipe

When choosing a plastic raw material, the first step should be to look for the material with the proper physical properties. PVC (Polyvinylchloride or Rigid Vinyl) is an amazingly strong and versatile material that has proven itself a champion in the ever growing demand for mechanical grades of plastic. We can see its wide versatility in the way it is used and how it can keep up with the rough conditions it’s put under. PVC Pipe has been shown to take a beating in construction sites and it serves its purpose underneath our front lawns for our sprinkling systems. There are many more ways this strong industrial grade PVC can be used.

PVC Sheet and Rod for a wide variety of industrial and mechanical applicationsPVC sheet and PVC Rod can be machined easily PVC Sheet and PVC Panels, PVC Is Much More Than Just Pipe PVC Sheet and PVC Panels, PVC Is Much More Than Just Pipe pvc lathe and machine

A standard industrial plastics, it is available as PVC Sheet or PVC Rod. The PVC, unlike other materials, is very easy to work with. It’s not necessary to buy expensive tools to get the job done. You can use the most of the same tools you would use on wood and steel. Unlike other materials, PVC can be kept cool easily using cold water or you can use an air compressor. Standard CNC equipment, punch machines, routers, drills and saws can all be used to shape PVC. If you wanted to seal and bond this material, that’s not a problem because like the PVC Pipe, the sheets and rods can be bonded with cements or heat welded. The cost of PVC is also lower than most other plastic materials that are harder to work with. So you can see why PVC should be on your short list of plastic materials.

Standard PVC sheet sizes and thicknesses for PVC Sheet

The standard sheet size for PVC is 48” x 96”. Some of you may know those measurements because that is also the standard size of drywall and plywood. Because PVC comes in the same sizes as other common materials it would be fairly easy to store. As for the thickness .062” – 3” are the most standard thicknesses, but it can be made thicker if needed. The material cuts and fabricates well, and we do offer cutting to your blank or precision sizes. We also cut the rest of the industrial and engineering plastics, including: Acetal/Delrin, Nylon, PEEK, Ultem, and dozens more; call for details.

PVC Sheets take a beating

PVC has many excellent properties, including the unbelievable UL 94 V-0 flame rating. This certification means that the Rigid Vinyl material is fire retardant, and is considered ‘self extinguishing. By now you are probably were thinking “PVC sounds great so far, but I wanted to paint and screen print on a material”, then have no fear because PVC Sheet and Sheeting is here! PVC is also known for its ability to hold paint and a screen print. It is heat bendable, vacuum formable in thinner gauges, and bondable to materials such as wood, paper and other plastics. Because of PVC’s many usages and qualities we even see it being use to create house hold items.

Various Thicknesses of Gray PVC Sheet and PVC Sheets, clear PVC sheet, type 1, type 2 PVC Sheet and PVC Panels, PVC Is Much More Than Just Pipe PVC Sheet and PVC Panels, PVC Is Much More Than Just Pipe Gray PVC Sheets

The material can be sanded, routed and you can eliminate scratches and scrapes by simply buffing or sanding them away. With PVC being so versatile and also low in cost, it’s no wonder why it is a top choice for manufacturing and engineering companies. Click here for

PVC material specifications

Additional Reference Material About PVC Sheet, PVC Rod and Foamed PVC Sheet Here.

For additional details or to get answers to your questions, click here to email us.

Topic: PVC Sheet and PVC Sheets, Type 1, Type 2 and Clear


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Plastic Strip is common in other materialsPlastic Strip, plastic Strips and Plastic Tapes, Plastic Bar Available Materials Plastic Strip and Strips For Food Processing and Material Handling Available Materials Plastic Strip and Strips For Food Processing and Material Handling plastic strip and tape

A common standard item in the metals industry is ‘strip’. Strip is normally a piece of material that is 1/16″ – 3/8″ thick and 1.0″ – 4.0″ wide, although thicker and wider materials can also be referred to as strip. The metals industry produces various metals in these sizes of strip. In the plastics industry, strip is something we cut from larger sheets. The sizes are the same as listed above, but are cut from 48″ X 96″ or 48″ X 120″ sheets.

The a few of the most common plastics materials we cut to plastic strips are:

HDPE (High Density Polyethylene)

PTFE, TFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene)

UHMW – Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene

Acetal / Delrin

Nylon – Polyamide

PVC – Polyvinylchloride

Polycarbonate – Covestro (Bayer) Makrolon

Most plastics can be cut to these strip sizes, with various lengths available depending on type of material. In some materials and in some sizes, depending on quantity, special run to size plastic strip is available. These special run plastic strips can be run to almost any length. Specifically, in the UHMW and PTFE materials, much longer lengths are available in rolls of material. The UHMW can be purchased in standard and adhesive back varieties. This UHMW with adhesive is a commonly used item in the wear strip applications because of its ease of installation. A large market for this kind of strip is in the food processing industry for all wear points and to reduce noise in the plant. Some of these same sizes with adhesive on the back are available in the PTFE, and are available in long tape style rolls. In some cases, colors other than natural are available, contact us for details. Plastic Strip, plastic bar, excellent in food processing and material handling Available Materials Plastic Strip and Strips For Food Processing and Material Handling Available Materials Plastic Strip and Strips For Food Processing and Material Handling material handling

Plastic Strip and Strips are available in special sizes

With the massive range of plastics available, and most of these materials available to be cut to strips, the nearly unlimited amount of choices in plastic strip availability make this post difficult to be all inclusive. Great material for the industrial, food processing, material handling, automotive and recreational industries.

Most plastics are available in large sheets, and we can cut these sheets to strip for you. Also, depending on the material, size and quantity, we can custom extrude your strip in longer lengths and to your requirements. Decide on a type of plastic, determine the size and quantity, and give us a call. Use your imagination, we can help.

If you have a project where strips would be ideal, please contact us to see if the type of material you need is available in the strip configuration that would be beneficial. Call us at: 866-832-9315 or drop us an email and we will be happy to go to work on your requirement.


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Topic: Plastic Strip and Plastic Strips – Strip Plastics

Is HDPE Sheet and Acetal Sheet (Delrin) the same?

Here is another popular question asked by our clients. Is HDPE the same as Acetal / Delrin?
No, they are two totally different materials. Although the natural color of both is a milky white to opaque white, and they do look a bit similar, they are not. (HDPE is milky white to almost translucent depending on thickness, and Acetal is a more opaque white to slightly milky – once again depending on thickness . See picture below of .500″ thick samples of HDPE and Acetal sheets)

HDPE and Acetal – Some DifferencesHDPE sheet and Acetal sheet Natural Color Samples Both .500" thick sheet Is HDPE sheet and Delrin Sheet The Same Materials? Is HDPE sheet and Delrin Sheet The Same Materials? HDPE Acetal

The HDPE sheet and rod is a softer material, and is commonly known for its FDA certification and used in numerous food applications, such as: one gallon milk jugs, cutting boards, colored water glasses/cups, and many, many more. While it can be machined, because it is a bit softer and lighter, the tolerances it can be machined to are not very tight. It is not bondable, so it makes a great non-stick surface for sticky foods and adhesives.


The Acetal / Delrin also have FDA certification, and are used heavily in the food processing industry. This material is a more mechanical material and is used in bearing and wear applications, cams, feeder screws, etc. This material is can be machined to tight tolerances, and will wear for long periods without lubrication. Due to its exceptional wear properties, it is not bondable, thus requiring mechanical fastening or threads to assemble. It has a very low water absorption, and you will find it in your toilet tank as the white moving parts in the filler mechanism. It is an extremely popular material for machinists, as it works much like soft brass.


While HDPE Sheet and Acetal Sheet look similar, they perform quite a bit differently.

While both materials are FDA approved, are machinable and can be used to make rigid wear resistant parts, they are two different resins and have drastically different physical properties. Another major difference is in the weight of these items, HDPE sheet and rod material weighs about 35% less than the Acetal sheet and rod material. Please check the data sheets for more information to assist in proper material selection. Acetal Data Sheet and HDPE Sheet Data

Acetal is commonly known as: Delrin, Ensital, Unital, Pomalux, Ultraform and many more.

HDPE is also known as: Ultraethylux, Densetec, Polystone G, Fortiflex, Versadur, Hostalen, and many more.

Contact us for more details on the HDPE and Acetal families of plastic materials, e-mail us or call 866-832-9315
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Topic: HDPE sheet and Delrin Sheet (Acetal Sheet)

Which Plastic Sheet or Plastic Sheets?

A wide variety of plastics are available in sheet form.

The term: ‘Plastic Sheet‘ or ‘Plastic Sheets’ is more of a general statement covering over a hundred types of plastic materials and plastic products. Some of the most popular plastic materials made as a sheet are:

Wide range of plastic materials in sheet

In addition to the wide range of plastic materials available as plastic sheet, most of these materials are also available as: thin gauge or film, strip, plate, block, slab and plastic panels. The thin gauge or film materials are frequently available with or without a pressure sensitive adhesive also called ‘tape’. Sheet in some materials is available over 4.0″ thick and perhaps as thick as 8.0″ thick in a few materials. The standard sheet size on most of our plastic sheets is either 24″ X 48″ or the larger 48″ X 96″ sheet size; although some materials are available as: 48″ X 120″, 60″ X 96″ or 72″ X 96″. Contact us with with questions on your required piece sizes, we are happy to provide plastic sheets cut to size.

While there are lots and lots of different materials available as plastic sheet, there may only be one or two materials that are right for your application. We want to assist with your search. If you need help choosing the proper plastic material for your application, check out our free Plastic Material Selector Guide. Also, feel free to contact us for further assistance. As a leading plastic sheet distributor since 1975, we feel that we are your best choice as your new plastic sheet and sheets supplier. Give us a call at 866-832-9315.
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Topic: Various Plastic Sheet Materials Available



Bayer Plastics Makrolon Polycarbonate – Still UL approved?

The world of polycarbonate sheet has changed and evolved over the last several years. Most manufacturers have changed their formulation, and most new formulations no longer meet the tough UL  certification ratings for flammability. Many manufacturers now do not rate their materials on the UL 94 series tests at all. Most suppliers don’t even meet the rating of UL 94 HB (which means it will burn horizontally!). The UL 94 V-0 means that when tested, the material did not burn vertically and was self extinguishing. In other words, it does not burn, puts itself out and will not add to the combustion. Bayer Material Science, formerly known as Sheffield Plastics,  still certifies their materials to this high rating, and have a range of materials that can meet your requirements.

Bayer Material Science produces standard General Purpose Polycarbonate as Makrolon® GP, which meets the UL 94 HB rating. The next grade is their Makrolon® GP-V which carries the UL 94 V-0 at .210″ and thicker. They also have a superior grade called Makrolon® FI, and it meets the UL 94 V-0 at  the thickness of .060″ and an amazing UL 5VA at .118″ and thicker.

UL 94 V-0 approval for Polycarbonate Bayer – Sheffield Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet Still UL Certified Bayer – Sheffield Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet Still UL Certified UL logoBayer Material Sciences Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheets Bayer – Sheffield Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet Still UL Certified Bayer – Sheffield Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet Still UL Certified bayer logo

Since the beginning of Polycarbonate, originally invented by General Electric Plastics, the most common trade name has been Lexan®. Today, the Lexan® trade name is owned and produced by Sabic Polymers (they purchased all of G.E. Plastics). Sabic is one of the best resin manufacturers in the world, and many of their resins are used to make products we supply (ie: Noryl® and Ultem®). The second largest – well known manufacturer of polycarbonate resins has been Bayer (yes, the company that makes your aspirin), and several years ago they purchased Sheffield Plastics. Sheffield has been a world leader in the manufacturing of Makrolon® Polycarbonate sheet and sheet. Now under the Bayer umbrella, this material is now the best rated polycarbonate sheet in the market.

Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheets Take A Beating

Hitting Polycarbonate Sheet with hammer Bayer – Sheffield Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet Still UL Certified Bayer – Sheffield Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet Still UL Certified HammerBoth of these polycarbonate sheets are very high impact (considered unbreakable), and are exceedingly transparent, has the look of transparent glass. As one of the only clear plastic materials that is high impact, polycarbonate in glazing applications are very tough, and can take numerous hammer blows without cracking or breaking. Also, one of the distinct differences between these materials is the UL rating. Here is a copy of the current (May 2013) data sheets for these two brands of material – Bayer Makrolon®_GP, Makrolon® GP-V, Makrolon® FI and Sabic Lexan® 9034. Review these pages, with extra focus on the ‘Flammability’ ratings of these materials. You will see that Sabic does not list the UL 94 specification (the USA standard for flammability) at all,  and that the Bayer – Sheffield material does meet the UL certification in a variety of materials. While this just one rating, it  should not be the only factor when considering a polycarbonate purchase, it is important if your project needs a flammability rating. Both manufacturers produce very high quality sheet, and without the masking you can’t see a difference. 

Let us know if we can assist you with your Polycarbonate Sheets or an individual Sheet requirement. Email us or call us at: 866-832-9315

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Ultem® Sheets Rods – Polyetherimide, PEI

Polyetherimide or PEI is the generic name for one of the popular engineering resins. The most common resin supplier for this material is Sabic Plastics (formerly known at G.E. Plastics). This material comes in two common varieties used in the production of plastic shapes, the first is Ultem® 1000 which is an unfilled – natural material, the standard color for unfilled PEI is a transparent amber. The second is Ultem® 2300, which is a 30% glass filled PEI resin, this resin is a creamy tan color. Several other resins are available, including different percentages of glass fill, black pigment or color, and a few high end specialty grades. Ultem 1000 Machined Parts, PEI Ultem® 1000 and 2300 Sheets and Rods - Polyetherimide or PEI Ultem® 1000 and 2300 Sheets and Rods - Polyetherimide or PEI Ultem Machined Parts1

Ultimate Ultem 1000

Some members our our industry refer to Ultem® as the ‘ultimate’ in plastic materials. With some of the best available properties, this material out performs most plastics in critical applications. This material is certified to: FDA compliance, USDA, 3A and also USP Class VI for medical use. Polyetherimides have exceptional tensile and flexural strengths and excellent electrical properties. Ultem® resins have inherent flame resistance and are UL 94 5VA at .075″. It machines very well, and can be used at temperatures of 340 degrees continuous.

Polyetherimide – PEI is the Ultimate Resin

The Polyetherimide family of plastic resins really excel in the medical and pharmaceutical industries. These industries have incredible demands on plastic materials, and most plastics fail quickly. Ultem resins handle the heat, chemical, stress better than almost any other material. For complete technical data sheets and more information chick for data sheet page. Sabic Polymer resins - formerly general electric plastics Ultem® 1000 and 2300 Sheets and Rods - Polyetherimide or PEI Ultem® 1000 and 2300 Sheets and Rods - Polyetherimide or PEI sabic

Several of our major manufacturers produce Ultem® PEI resins into stock sheets and rods. Some trade names from these suppliers are: Unitem®, Tempalux®, Sustatec® and many more. Ultem has some of the best properties of all the available plastic materials. Some materials that have some similar properties: Acetal, Radel, PEEK, PTFE. Check the data sheets on each of these materials to help in deciding which material is appropriate for your application.

Rod is normally available in rod from .375″ – 4.0″ diameters, and sheets from .125″ – over 2.0″ thickness, and we stock many items for immediate shipment. Additional sizes are available on request, including larger diameters, thicknesses, molded tube, extruded shapes, strips and bars.
Contact us for more details on this exceptional material. Email us or call us at 866-832-9315

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Dupont Delrin rod and Acetal Rods

Many of our clients assume that Delrin rod and Acetal rod is the same thing. This is not quite true. Yes, all Delrin rod is Acetal rod, but not all Acetal rod is Delrin rod. Delrin is a trade name for Homo-Polymer Acetal made by Dupont. This is the most recognized of all Acetal materials, but far from the only available Acetal material.Black and Natural Acetal - Delrin Rod Why You Should Use Dupont Delrin Versus Acetal Rod Why You Should Use Dupont Delrin Versus Acetal Rod acetal rod
The Co-Polymer Acetal is produced by a wide variety of large plastic manufacturers, BASF is probably one of the largest and most well known. Some main resin names are: BASF Ultraform H4320, Kepital F10-02, or Hostaform M25. While Delrin is a wonderful material, in larger cross sections or larger diameters, the Delrin brand Homo-Polymer can exhibit center line porosity. This can sometimes be seen with the naked eye, and is a darker white in a normally milky white natural colored material. This center line porosity can cause problems in some applications. This porosity can cause leakage of fluid if under pressure, or ‘soft centers’ of Delrin Rod and Delrin Sheet.

This should not stop you from considering Delrin though. Many other properties of the Delrin resin are superior to the Co-Polymer resins. These properties are:

General Property ASTM
Test
Typical Value
Unfilled Delrin®

Homo-Polymer
Typical Value
Unfilled Co-Polymer
Specific Gravity D792 1.42 1.40
Tensile Strength Yield D638 9,600 – 11,000 9,000 – 10,200
Tensile Modulus D638 450,000 400,000
Izod Impact – Notched D256 1.2 1.0
Hardness – Rockwell D785 M94 M90
Deflection Temp @ 264psi D648 257 220
Deflection Temp @ 66 psi D648 347 335
Water Absorption @ 24 hrs
% 0.24 0.25
Co. Thermal Expansion D696 6.83X10-5 5.4X10-5

The key properties that Delrin are: higher tensile strength, increased Izod impact, higher deflection temperatures and it is slightly harder. The co-efficient of thermal expansion is a bit higher, and needs to be considered when designing a new part. Delrin brand material also comes in several resin variations, including: Delrin 150 and Delrin 507, contact us for details.

Many of our clients prefer the Delrin brand rod and sheet for small machined parts. This is due to the increase in a few key properties, and of course brand recognition. Both resins meet the standard ASTM-D-6778, and the cancelled specs, L-P-395 and ASTM-D-4181.Colored Acetal - Delrin Rod - Pomalux Why You Should Use Dupont Delrin Versus Acetal Rod Why You Should Use Dupont Delrin Versus Acetal Rod colored acetal pomalux

The Acetal family of plastic resins are excellent for wear resistance, great mechanical strength, and superior machining properties. It is available in a huge range of sizes and shapes. Click here for more details on Acetal – Delrin Rod, and sometimes referred to as plastic dowel. We also have the capacity to supply colored Acetal – Delrin rod; click here from more details on the colored Acetal material.

Similar materials to Acetal – Delrin are Nylon Rod, PET Rod and Noryl Rod. Most materials are available as round rod, square rod, bar, strip, sheet and plate.

Please contact us for more details on these and other plastic materials. For a comparison chart of plastic materials click here: Plastic Materials Selection Guide

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PLASTICS IN THE MEDICAL FIELD Polyethylene Bags Medical Grade Plastic Sheet and Rod, UHMW, PEEK, Ultem materials Medical Grade Plastic Sheet and Rod, UHMW, PEEK, Ultem materials image002

When we think of plastic, we think of plastic bags you get at the grocery store or maybe your child’s toy that’s made out of cheap throw away material. If you stop and think about it, plastic is everywhere and it’s uses are almost infinite. Take Acetal or Delrin® ( a Dupont brand name) as it is more commonly know. It is a plastic that replaces metal in numerous applications and is used to make gears, screws and other hard working parts. Consider PTFE for instance which is used to coat your frying pan to make it non-stick, make steam valves and fittings, and chemical resistant parts. Another material is Polycarbonate or Lexan® (a SABIC brand name -formerly G.E. Plastics) which is used to replace glass because it is shatter resistant and is also used for bullet resistant glazing and riot shields. Even the cup of coffee you grab for every morning is made of foamed Styrene – Styrofoam. But plastic has shaped our lives in countless ways, many of them you might not even think of or notice.

Plastic used in medical replacements for limbs Medical Grade Plastic Sheet and Rod, UHMW, PEEK, Ultem materials Medical Grade Plastic Sheet and Rod, UHMW, PEEK, Ultem materials image004Plastics play a big part in the world of medicine. Some other advancements in the area of medicine include assisting people with debilitating injuries and serious afflictions, helping them feel more comfortable and move easier. Prosthetic limbs and joint replacements have come along way since the old days of metal and wood. Since the late 90’s UHMW or (Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene) has become the standard in hip and joint replacements. With plastics like UHMW, which has great wear resistance, excellent strength and very low co-efficient of friction (very slippery), it has made people who need these surgeries have better mobility and better quality of life. These plastics also make prosthetic limbs lighter and stronger for athletes who wish to compete and lead near normal active lifestyles due to the use of plastic polymers (derived from the Greek meaning ‘many parts’) mimicking human flexibility. Prosthetic devices date all the way back to the ancient Egyptians where they used leather and wood for toe and foot replacements. But thanks to today’s technologies and advancements in as plastic, most amputees and athletes can regain their quality of life and enabling them to do what they love.

What has Medical Plastic Done For You Lately?

Another plastic material that has changed the medical field is PEEK (Polyetheretherketone). This material is a newer plastic which has high Natural PEEK Medical Grade Rod Medical Grade Plastic Sheet and Rod, UHMW, PEEK, Ultem materials Medical Grade Plastic Sheet and Rod, UHMW, PEEK, Ultem materials Natural Peek Rodchemical resistance along with excellent high continuous temperature resistance of up to 480 degrees fahrenheit. PEEK has replaced many metal devices in the medical field, because PEEK is one of the only thermoplastics (plastic which can be bent or shaped) able to withstand high doses of radiation over an extended lifetime. In addition PEEK is used to help many people awaiting kidney transplants because it is used to make a critical component in dialysis machines. These machines need to clean the blood over a period of several hours and because of this, PEEK is the natural solution, as it can be steam cleaned time and time again with little effect on the material. Along with its great chemical, temperature, and fluid handling stability, PEEK is USP Class VI, making it ideal for these types of medical applications. The natural color of PEEK is a beige to tan and is available in sheet and rod. One of the largest manufacturers of PEEK resin is Victrex and their 450G resin.

Plastics In Medicine – Everyday

Plastic materials have become apart of our lives and has changed the way we take care of the sick and injured, how we protect our foods from germs, and prolong the storage of foods. Plastics protect medical instruments and insure they are sterile. It has made people’s lives better in both the short and long term. It has helped reduce pain, gain better movement and has given people their confidence back. The values of plastic can not be understated and in the future, hopefully plastics will save or prolong many more lives through advancements in technology and the limitless possibilities it presents.

For more information on these and other medical grade plastics like: Clear Nylon (look for blog post on this), Ultem, Polysulfone, Radel and more, contact us. E-mail us or call 866-832-9315

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FDA – NSF Approved Cutting Boards

HDPE and UHMW Polyethylene Sheets

Next time you are cutting vegetables on your cutting board, the material most likely to be used is Polyethylene. Because it is stain, moisture and odor resistant, Polyethylene is a perfect choice. Other cutting boards made out of wood are more susceptible to bacteria and odors because they lack the properties that Polyethylene sheets offer, such as its chemical resistance and FDA approval for food Colored HDPE Cutting Boards NSF approved HDPE and UHMW Polyethylene Sheet – Cutting Boards HDPE and UHMW Polyethylene Sheet – Cutting Boards cuttingboardscontact. Polyethylene is a very durable and lightweight material that comes in many forms and is a great for a wide variety of applications.

NSF Approved Cutting Boards

The HDPE is available in .500″ thick in several FDA / NSF approved colors, and is great for use in kitchens where cross contamination is a problem. 

The Ultimate Cutting Board

Polyethylene has many names. The most common are HDPE, LDPE, and UHMW. The difference has to with the molecular weight and branching which is when a monomer or atom is replaced by a longer chain of polymers (a long repeating chain of atoms). High Density is commonly used for milk jugs and food containers. Low Density is commonly used for bottles and plastic bags. UHMW, which has higher molecular weight (2-6 million) allows for an even transfer over the length of material which makes it stronger and able to be used for bearing applications due to its great wear resistance. Commonly used in the food and dairy industry, UHMW is a great replacement for other materials and solution to many problems. All of these polymers are derived from the same family but all have certain properties that make them a little different. HDPE provides great chemical resistance, with high impact strength and great energy absorption. LDPE has most of the same properties as High Density but is not as dense at 9.15, opposed to HDPE which is 9.34. It also has a lower tensile strength and easier formability.

UHMW is a strong material that has great durability and low co-efficient making it an ideal for sliding FDA and NSF approved UHMW machined sproket HDPE and UHMW Polyethylene Sheet – Cutting Boards HDPE and UHMW Polyethylene Sheet – Cutting Boards uhmwsheetsproketapplications. Polyethylene offers a wide range of material choices and properties and has great durability that can be suitable for a number of applications. From the food industry to automotive, the kitchen or the warehouse, whatever your Polyethylene needs are; High Density, Low Density or UHMW, Polyethylene is a great choice.

Typical Resin Properties:

General Property ASTM Test Typical Value HDPE Typical Value LDPE Typical Value UHMW
Specific Gravity D792 .941 – .965 .91 – .925 .93 – .94
Tensile Strength Yield D638 3,800 – 5,500 1,400 – 2,000 6,800
Izod Impact – Notched D256 2.0 – 3.5 >16 No Break
Vicat Softening Temp D1525 257ºF 219ºF 260
Hardness – Rockwell D785 D60 -70 D42 – 50 R64
Continuous Use Temp -100 – 180ºF 174ºF 180ºF
Deflection Temp @ 66 psi D648 171   124 174
Co. Thermal Expansion D696 7X10-5 4.6 -5.5X10-5 11.0X10-5

Please contact us for more information on FDA and NSF approved plastic materials. Email us here, or call us at: 866-832-9315

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Topic: HDPE Cutting Boards – NSF Approved

Nylon Tube and Tubing can be made from Nylon 6 or 6/6

Nylon is one of the most popular and widely used plastic materials. From the carpet in your home to the yellow Nylon rope you have in your garage, Nylon is a tough and very wear resistant material. This self lubricating mechanical plastic material is very stiff and extremely durable. This material can be machined easily, and is a key industrial plastic resin.

Nylon 6 and Nylon 6/6 Tubing

While Nylon is a common plastic material, in the extrusion and cast grades, it is not a normal stock item for many factories. Nylon can be produced in a huge range of sizes. The cast process enables the range of sizes of a Cast Nylon Tube (Type 6) to be almost unlimited. The extrusion process is a bit more restrictive, which can produce very small sizes to larger sizes of Extruded Nylon Type 6/6 Tubing up to about 2.0″ OD. The properties of these materials are similar, and are listed here. Also, in the case of the Cast Type 6 Nylon Tube, many additives can be mixed into the casting Nylon MD - Polyamide Plastic Material On Metal - Steel Core Nylon Tube and Nylon Tubing made from Nylon 6 or Nylon 6/6 Nylon Tube and Nylon Tubing made from Nylon 6 or Nylon 6/6 Nylon Gear On Coremixture to increase many critical properties. Examples of these additives can yield: Glass Filled Nylon Tube, FDA Approved Oil Filled Cast Nylon Tubing, Cast Nylon MD Tube (molybdenum disulphide), Solid Lubricant Filled Cast Nylon Tube, and a few additional variations. These same filled items are also available in Cast Nylon Rod, Cast Nylon Sheets and Cast Nylon Plates (all made from the same Cast Nylon Type 6 resin). This casting process allows for a wide range of sizes and configurations, from round rod, cast sheet, tubular bar to near net shapes and covers on metal rollers and gears.

Why use Tubular Nylon (Nylon Tubular Bar)

There are numerous reasons to use a Nylon Tubular shaped material. 1. Vast range of sizes to fit most requirements 2. Large reduction of waste due to near net shape 3. Great reduction of machining time due to matching size to finished needs12" OD Large Cast Nylon Tube Nylon Tube and Nylon Tubing made from Nylon 6 or Nylon 6/6 Nylon Tube and Nylon Tubing made from Nylon 6 or Nylon 6/6 LARGE CAST NYLON TUBE 4. Lower cost due to reduced material and reduced machining time

The difference between Nylon 6 Tubing and Nylon 6/6 Tube

The main differences are the base resin. The Nylon 6 tubing is a cast resin, and the Nylon 6/6 tube is an extrusion grade resin. Both materials are still Nylon, just a different grade of resin. The properties are also very similar, look here for specific Nylon resin properties. The other difference is that the Cast Type 6 Nylon is normally in larger sizes. This is because the cast version is poured as a liquid into molds or rigid tooling, and is done one at a time. This process, while it makes a very high quality part, is a more expensive manufacturing method, and is not cost effective in small or thin cross sections. The extrusion grade of Nylon, the Type 6/6 Nylon is heat processed in large batches. This process requires set up and large runs, and is very cost effective in these large production runs. In addition, the cross sections for the heat processed Nylon 6/6 can not be excessively large. The extruded Nylon 6/6 is therefor done sizes up to about 3″, as larger pieces are more expensive and require extra stress relieving to prevent warping.

Cast Nylon Versatility

The Cast Nylon manufacturing in the USA is very advanced. The production facilities can produce amazing and diverse sizes and shapes in the grades listed above. One of the unique versions of Cast Nylon is in the Glass FilledLarge Cast Nylon Sheaves Nylon Tube and Nylon Tubing made from Nylon 6 or Nylon 6/6 Nylon Tube and Nylon Tubing made from Nylon 6 or Nylon 6/6 NYLON SHEEVE Nylon Tube, Glass Filled Nylon Rod and Glass Filled Nylon Sheet range. The percentage of glass fill can be custom blended to meet your specific needs, and can also contain additional fillers like MD, Oil or pigments. Many grades of Nylon are also available for very specific applications, like: bearings, sheaves, pulleys, wear plates, food processing applications, FDA approved grades, color matched for identification and many more. Other plastic materials used in these same applications include: Acetal / Delrin, PET (Polyester), PTFE and more. Contact us today for additional information on this or any other plastic sheet, rod or tube material. E-mail us here, or call us toll free at 866-832-9315, or visit our main web page at: iPlasticSupply.com

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Delrin Homopolymer versus Copolymer Acetal

Have you noticed the little plastic gears in your watch, the working parts in a garden hose nozzle, audio and video cassette moving parts, food slide components, timing screws and pumps parts, or perhaps even acoustic guitar picks? If you have, then you have seen perhaps the most versatile plastic known as Acetal (polyoxymethylene or POM). It is an extremely durable and strong plastic material, so it is no surprise to see it being used for so many different things. Used as a regular replacement for many aluminum or metal parts, or the similar plastic materials, like Polyamide Nylon or Rigid Polyester. It is the next step up from HDPE, a common plastic used in food processing. Because of the uniform molecular structure of Acetal, it can be used for different applications that might require a plastic material to be more rigid, have good mechanical properties and have a low coefficient of friction.Machining Copolymer Acetal or Delrin Homopolymer Acetal Rod Is there a difference between Delrin Homopolymer and Acetal Copolymer Is there a difference between Delrin Homopolymer and Acetal Copolymer Acetal

The battle between Delrin and Acetal

Both Delrin and Acetal materials are thermoplastic. What this means a material can be softened by being heated and when cooled becomes hard again, and will retain the new shape. Because of this characteristic it is able to be molded in to many different types of objects, like the few listed above. While some thermoplastics are ‘formable’, Acetal is definitely not to reshape with heat after it is made into a sheet or rod. A crystalline, rather than amorphous type resin is used to make acetal. Because of the uniform molecular structure of Acetal, it can be used for different applications that would require a plastic material to be more rigid, have excellent mechanical properties and have a low coefficient of friction. Both of these resins are produced in Natural (White) and Black, also there are some colors are available on special order; there is also the Delrin AF (a PTFE filled Delrin) is a mid to dark brown color.

There are two basic grades of Acetal

You need to know some of the differences, Acetal versus Delrin. There are two main types of Acetal; one is a copolymer and the other a homopolymer. Ticona is one manufacture that makes a widely known copolymer called Celcon, BASF produces a high quality copolymer, H2320. Likewise DuPont makes Delrin, a popular brand name and the most commonly used Homopolymer. Standard mill shapes include: Acetal Sheet, round rods, flat sheets and some tube and profiles are also produced.
They may be close, but not the exactly

Yes, the copolymer and homopolymer acetal are very similar and they look the same, they do have some large differences in properties and this makes them unique in their own way. For example the copolymer will perform better than the homopolymer in these areas; thermal, impact, wear and chemical resistance. As you investigate the copolymer characteristics, you will discover that it has a lower water absorption rate. You may find this to be important if you plan on using with moist functions such as faucets, impellers, pump parts, valve and valves stems than the homopolymer acetal will. Now, when you review the homopolymer, which has a higher crystallinity, this will increase some properties and make it stronger, with improved mechanical strength and creep resistance, than its brother, the copolymer. Chemical resistance is one of the areas Acetal materials sometimes have a weakness, specifically oxidizing agents and strong acids. Other than these types of chemicals, Acetal is pretty much resistant to a wide range of solvents and commonly used chemicals.

Delrin Versus Acetal

One visual difference, and possibly a significant performance difference, between the copolymer and homopolymer is center line porosity. The homopolymer (Delrin) resin is known to be susceptible to having center line porosity, a section in the center of a rodt, it will be seen as a small circle found at the center. As for slab or sheet, it will appear as a white stripe down the center or middle (of the thickness) of the extruded or compression molded sheet material. This porosity is caused by the gasses trying to escape during the cooling processes. If a large rod is to have the middle or center machined out, then Delrin is an excellent choice. Copolymer Acetal does not have this ‘soft center’ or porosity.
Homopolymer Delrin and Copolymer Acetal are easy to machine

Both of these resins can be excellent choices for machining and mechanical type applications. Tight tolerances may be maintained during the cutting and machining process. The materials are considered to be self lubricating, and make very good dry slide wear strips. Both of these resins are FDA and 3A (Dairy) compliant.

You may wish to consider Acetal, either Delrin Homopolymer or Copolymer Acetal for your next engineering plastic applications. Contact us via Email for additional assistance, or call us at 866-832-9315

Topic: Delrin Versus Acetal in Sheet and Rod

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