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

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 Sheetglazing 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

Plastic Strip is common in other materialsPlastic Strip, plastic Strips and Plastic Tapes, Plastic Bar

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

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

Things you should know about Polycarbonate Sheet, Sheets and Panels

A common misconception is that ‘all polycarbonate sheets are the same’. This is not true, as a matter of fact, it is far from a fact. While most manufacturers of polycarbonate sheets start with a similar base resin, this is where the similarities normally stop. Most polycarbonate sheet extruders run a base material far different from what the standard has been for the last 30 years. Most polycarbonate sheet is now made without the flame rating it had in the past. Polycarbonate Sheets are sometimes called ‘polycarbonate panels’ or ‘polycarbonate plates’, they are still made from the same high quality resins. One of the best known manufacturers of Polycarbonate resins and sheets is Sabic Polymers®, the manufacturers of Lexan® resin and Lexan® Sheet products. Over the last several years, Sabic has quietly discontinued the UL ratings on their Polycarbonate.

Industrial Plastic Supply And Makrolon GPBayer MaterialScience now Covestro

For more than 30 years, Industrial Plastic Supply has relied on the high quality Polycarbonate Sheets produced by Sheffield, now part of Covestro (formerly Bayer MaterialScience). Covestro produces a crystal clear, ultra high impact strength resin, this Makrolon resin is the finest in the industry. Covestro has also chosen to continue to produce this high quality material with the UL 94 V-0 rating, the only supplier to continue this expensive, but extremely valuable service. Take a moment and look at your requirements, see if perhaps somewhere on the blue print is a note that states your polycarbonate material needs to be UL 94 V-0 approved or rated. If so, Makrolon GP is your only and best choice!

How is Covestro Makrolon Polycarbonate available

We stock Covestro (Bayer MaterialScience) Makrolon GP in flat panels, considered Polycarbonate Sheet or as Polycarbonate Sheets. We can cut theses sheet Polycarbonate materials to strip or strips, blocks, or just a cut to size piece. At Industrial Plastic Supply we have stocked large quantities of these materials, and continue to keep Makrolon GP and Makrolon FI sheets in stock. With a wide range of thicknesses ( .030″ – .500″ thick) and sheet sizes of 48″ X 96″, 60″ X 60″ and 72″ X 96″ as standard in .118″ – .500″, we can fill all your requirements.Covestro (Bayer) Makrolon GP Polycarbonate Sheets formed into Riot Shields

Why you should use Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheet

Superior clarity, quality, surface finish, flame retardant and full USA factory technical assistance are just a few reasons. Buying polycarbonate sheets imported from somewhere half way around the globe, from an unknown manufacturer with little or no technical support can be very risky. Covestro/Sheffield manufacturers this premium quality polycarbonate sheet right here in the good old USA, in Sheffield, Massachusetts. They produce this crystal clear sheet on the latest and most technologically advanced extruders available, and have several warehouses for us to get material quickly for you. Why settle for an unknown? Can you afford to ‘try’ the other guys? Step up to the finest quality, and yet still competitively priced polycarbonate sheet, get Covestro Makrolon GP Polycarbonate Sheet for your next project. Industrial Plastic Supply also carries the Westlake Zelux M Polycarbonate Sheet and Zelux W Polycarbonate Plate. The Zelux M is a machine grade Polycarbonate Plate from .375″ – 4″ thick sheet, and the Zelux W is a clear – Window Grade thick Polycarbonate Plate in the same thickness range. Contact us for more information on this thicker material. We also supply other manufacturers grades of Polycarbonate Plate, including, but not limited to: Ensinger Plastics, Nytef Plastics, Rochling Plastics and more.Machined Polycarbonate Block made from Zelux M Contact us for more information or technical assistance on Polycarbonate or any other quality plastic sheet, rod or tube. Call us at 866-832-9315 or send us a quick note here. Google+



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What is the Strongest Plastic – Polycarbonate Sheet?

Many plastics are durable and have good impact strength. Delrin® – Acetal for example is a very durable and strong material, but compared to some other materials the impact strength is lower. The Acetal – Delrin is the best machining plastic around, it is used to make long lasting and good wearing parts for machines. Another great plastic that holds up to wear and tear is UHMW. With its high molecular weight and low friction resistance is ideal to take abuse over long periods of time.

However, one of the strongest materials in the plastic family is Polycarbonate. Commonly Polycarbonate Sheet or Sheets formed into Riot Shieldsreferred to Lexan® (SABIC) or Makrolon® (Bayer) Polycarbonate Sheets. Polycarbonate is by far one of the strongest (highest impact resistant) ­­­­­plastic materials, and is warranted against breakage. With its high impact strength, it is ideal for jobs were the ability to absorb abuse is a factor and in some cases may even need to save lives. A common material for high impact is Polycarbonate Sheet and Plate, but amazingly also Polycarbonate Rod.

Polycarbonate Sheets considered ‘unbreakable’.

Polycarbonate sheet is a valuable plastic due to its impact strength, temperature resistance and wide range of uses. It is commonly confused with Acrylic or Plexiglass which has similar properties but Polycarbonate is 25 times stronger and has a wider temperature range. Acrylic is better used for display purposes and is a brittle material. Polycarbonate is so strong that you can drill or hammer a nail right through it without breaking the material. It also can undergo large deformations without breaking while Acrylic cannot. Polycarbonate also can be used for electrical applications because it is a great insulator. It also has great safety properties due to it being flame retardant and because it has good heat resistance. Another way Polycarbonate exhibits its safety properties is through bullet resistant glass. Polycarbonate is the most commonly used material for bullet resistant glass, riot shields and face masks. In these situations, the Polycarbonate has a very high impact strength which is invaluable. It protects and saves lives and is able to stand up to abuse in dangerous situations.Polycarbonate Eye Protection Goggles

Polycarbonate Has Many Uses

From audio CDs to Blu-ray discs, airplane canopies to protective eye gear, Polycarbonate is a great thermoplastic (a material that can be formed and returned to its original shape) material for many different applications. Because of its impact strength and wide range of uses, Polycarbonate makes an ideal material for those who need peace of mind when designing or fabricating and need it to hold up to abuse and be virtually unbreakable. Polycarbonate is one of the toughest plastic materials around and everyday new products are being made from it. Whether using it for electrical, optical or for its impact properties, Polycarbonate is an ideal choice for many plastic needs.

Polycarbonate sheet (Makrolon) is available from .032″ – .500″ thick

Polycarbonate Plate, Slab, Block is available up to 4.0″ thick

Polycarbonate Rods are available from .250″ – over 8″ diameter.

More information on the UL approval ratings of Polycarbonate Sheets Here.

Not all Polycarbonate Sheet or Plate meet all approval ratings. Zelux Polycarbonate Plate is available in a machine grade and an optical grade. Zelux Polycarbonate Rod is also available – as a machine grade rod – not optical.

Typical Polycarbonate Resin Properties:

General Property ASTM Test Typical Value
Specific Gravity D792 1.2
Tensile Strength Yield D638 8,900 – 9,000
Tensile Modulus D638 340,000
Izod Impact – Notched D256 12.0-16.0
Hardness – Rockwell D785 M70
Deflection Temp @ 264psi D648 270
Deflection Temp @ 66 psi D648 280
Co. Thermal Expansion D696 3.7X10-5

 

We stock a large variety of thickness and sheet sizes in Makrolon GP sheet. For more information on this or other plastic sheets, please call us at 866-832-9315 or click here to contact us.

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Topic: Polycarbonate Sheet and Plate

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 PolycarbonateBayer Material Sciences Makrolon Polycarbonate Sheets

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 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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About Plastic Sheet Material

Plastic Sheet, Sheets and Sheeting materials In Stock

Today’s topic is all about industrial plastic sheet materials in flat sheet or sheets. Also known as plate, slab, strip and bar.

Most plastic materials are processed into sheets or rods. Rods are round, sheet is flat, square or rectangular. These two basic shapes are both generally extruded, although sheet can also be compression molded. Almost all plastic raw materials are available in sheet, and in a huge range of sizes. Most materials are available from .063″ to over 4″ in thickness; and some as thick as 8″ (how to measure thickness accurately, use a 6-Inch Digital Caliper with Extra-Large LCD). Sheet sizes vary, but generally most plastics are produced in 48″ X 96″ sheets or larger, but once again this changes with types of materials and thickness desired. We can help with almost any plastic material.

Need Help Picking a Plastic Sheet Material?

Deciding on the proper material for an application is the first step. Start by reviewing our Plastic Materials Selection Guide to help narrow your search. Having the key properties and needs of your project in mind will help you with this step. Also looking at both the pro’s and con’s of a material will assist in this search. Materials with the greatest property range can be extremely expensive, selecting a material that meets your needs and your budget should be considered.

Step two is researching sizes and availability – this is where we can really help. With most of the major manufacturers as partners, we are able to source your parts from many factories. While the quality from most factories is excellent, the variable is standard and custom sheet sizes. We also stock a wide variety of materials in large Plastic Sheets In Stock, Acetal sheet, nylon sheetsheets. One of our many manufacturers is Westlake Plastics. They have been compression molding large sized sheets of many popular plastic resins; these sheets are available in 48″ X 120″ as a standard sheet size in most plastics. They produce these materials from .250″ – 3.0″ thick or thicker. Other manufacturers produce 24″ X 48″ or 48″ X 96″ sheets as standard. Please contact us for specifics on your material selection.

Most of our plastic resins are available as a sheet. This includes some of the most popular plastics, like: Polycarbonate Sheet, Acetal Sheet, PTFE Sheet, Ultem Sheet and dozens more. Sometimes, Plastic sheet is called: Plate, Strip, Bar, Slab, Block or Panel. Please think of these names as being synonyms with Plastic Sheet. Contact us with your special requirements.

In thicker gauges, plastics are frequently referred to as plate, slab or block. And strips or narrow pieces are called bar. A rose by any other name, call it what you will, the plastic starts as a flat sheet from the factory. We can cut them to size or shape. Blanking of sheets to useable sizes is our specialty. Narrow pieces used for long applications are normally called strip. Strip is common in wear type applications.

For a list of materials we have as standard stock materials, check our Plastic Sheets Page. These and many other plastic materials are available, and custom sizes, shapes and colors vary by base material. As a stocking distributor for dozens of major manufactures, we are the West Coasts leading plastic sheet supplier or distributor. If you are in need of some technical assistance go to our Plasticologist page for specific help.

Contact us for more information on plastic sheet materials. Email us or call 866-832-9315

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Plastic Materials That Are UV Stable

Some of our most popular questions include “Is this material UV stable”, or “How long will this last in direct sunlight”, or something similar.

These are great questions. Just look at the ‘cheap’ backyard furniture you bought last year at the big box store, yep, it is faded and cracking. Why is that?

The quick answer is the material had either no UV (Ultra Violet Light) stabilizer or very, very little. Most plastic materials are not UV stable to start with, the main exception is Acrylic Sheeting which is virtually invisible to UV.

All other plastic materials need a little something extra to give it the protection it may need from the sun. Many plastic materials, if given the proper additives, can be used in direct sunlight for 10 – 15 years (or longer) giving excellent performance. UV Stable Playground HDPE Sheet

The first factor in picking such a material is the intended use. Not all materials are good candidates for all applications.

While some materials will perform very well, others under the same conditions will fail. Please contact us for details on a material to meet your needs.
HDPE sheet is one of the best materials for long term outdoor use, if given the proper additives. Next time you drive by a children’s playground in your local city, look at the brightly colored panels used to make the play equipment. This is a HDPE sheet with some heavy UV additives, and this makes an excellent application. These UV stabilized HDPE sheets are available in a rainbow of colors and are able to be easily fabricated, this material is excellent for many outdoor applications.
If your application is more mechanical and will not be exposed to direct sunlight, other materials that you might use would be: Polycarbonate, UHMW, ABS (especially with Korad cover), Acetal, Noryl and many more.

Our standard Covestro Makrolon Polycarbonate is a UV stable material in sheet, and is frequently used in replacement glazing applications. The remaining materials on the list are available in Black (a carbon black pigment) which extends outdoor usage. While still not recommended for direct sunlight, they can be used with a good possibility of success – depending on design.

Plastic materials have a tendency to become brittle or lose properties over time with sun exposure, if material does not have enough or proper UV stabilization. When using the proper material that contains the proper additives or coating, you can expect years of trouble free service.


Additionally, many materials will work well if they are painted to cover the plastic surface. Many spray paints, especially Acrylic paints, last many years in the sun. Please check with us, as some material do not accept paints or coatings.


Take some time to review your requirements, and the properties of the plastic you intend to use. The right material will provide the best performance. Contact any of our Plasticologists for assistance, call 866-832-9315 or email us. You can always do research on materials at www.iplasticsupply.com

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Is Lexan® the same as Makrolon® or Polycarbonate?

The short answer is no, are they very similar, yes. The reason is that both Lexan® and Makrolon® are brand names, along with Hyzod®, Cyrolon®, Zelux®, Paltuf®, Tuffak®, Ensicar®, Unicar®, Texin®, Apex® and many more. Lexan® is a brand name for SABIC (Saudi Basic Industries Corporation) which acquired the entire General Electric Plastics division several years ago. Makrolon® (formerly Hyzod®) is a trade name for Covestro (formerly Bayer MaterialSciences).

These materials are all Polycarbonate which is a very tough, high impact plastic material. The base resins are very similar, however, the end product varies quite a bit depending on the manufacturer. The Covestro Bayer Makrolon® GP-V material does meet the UL 94 V-0 flame retardant certification (at .220″ thick), and the Makrolon® GP is UL 94 HB rated.

How do I tell the difference between Lexan® and Makrolon®?

Bayer MaterialScience now Covestro

It would be impossible to tell the difference between brands by just looking, unless it still has the masking on, it would take some testing. The majority of both brands of materials are available in a very clear, UV stabilized glazing grade and look identical to the naked eye. This material is excellent for replacing window glass and is virtually unbreakable.

 

Industrial Plastic Supply stocks the Covestro (Bayer) Makrolon® GP Polycarbonate materials in stock and ready for shipment. We have chosen to carry the Covestro Makrolon® Polycarbonate because of its superior quality, physical properties and ratings. You will find these materials available as sheet and rod here. If you have further questions, or would like to see the data sheet on Makrolon® Polycarbonate and/or Lexan® Polycarbonate for comparison, please give us a call: 866-832-9315 or email: request@indplastic.com

This post is part of our effort to answer as many questions for you as possible, and to assist you in choosing the proper material for your applications, this is another very popular question we hear.

Yes, Lexan® and Makrolon® are both Polycarbonate materials. And we believe that the Covestro Makrolon® is the best Polycarbonate sheet available in the market place.

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