It is important to be knowledgeable of the many different variations and measurements that are applicable when selecting a product made from rubber. Commercial applications will oftentimes call for an elastomer product with very specific properties that are suitable for the completion of particular tasks. One such variant of elastomers is solid rubber, which is desired for applications in which there will be high levels of abrasion and stress, or when resistance to permanent indentation is necessary. Solid rubber roll material is an industrial antonym to cellular or sponge rubber. Hard rubber sheets can be purposed towards many applications because of the properties of the materials from which they are derived. A simple rolled rubber is a highly-useful product both commercially and industrially, but let us investigate as to why this is the case.
Properties of Solid Rubber
- Durometer: Perhaps the most important measurement for elastomer products is its durometer. Simply put, durometer is a material’s resistance to permanent indentation. For this measurement, the Shore Durometer scale is used. A material with a high durometer measurement would be difficult to compress, such as hard rubber sheets made from a hardened elastomer. Essentially, any time an external force is applied, a material with a high durometer measurement is going to be able to resistant changes fairly easily.
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Facts About Solid Rubber and its Applications
Applications of Solid Rubber
- Hardness: While durometer is a more specific measurement and terminology, a material’s hardness can refer to one or more characteristics. For example, a firm elastomer would not only be able to resist indentation, but it would also be resistant to fracture as well as how elastic the material was. The harder the material, the less elastic it would be. Furthermore, hardness can also refer to how difficult it would be to cut, as well as the way in which the material reacts to the rapid application of forces.
- Density: For the most part, when a material is stiffer, it is likely to have a higher density as well. A dense rolled rubber is going to be able to resist abrasion, indentation, rupture, and other stresses with more success than softer or less-dense elastomers. Overall, this will mean that the material is more durable and thus can be used for higher-stress applications.
- Rigidness: For the most part, this refers to an objects ability to maintain its original shape while still demonstrating a noticeable level of flexibility. A harder material can bend without fracture and recover from physical displacement.
- Force Distribution: When a force is applied to a material, how does that material respond? Will it disperse the force equally over its surface or repel it completely? Soft rubbers are more likely to absorb and equally disperse impacts, while solid rubber is far more likely to repel the forces which are applied to it. This gives firmer elastomers are protective quality that softer elastomers cannot provide.
- Acoustics: Much like the way in which firmer elastomers respond to applied forces, they respond similarly to sound waves and vibrations. They are excellent at redirecting sound waves at whatever angle they traveled in and rebounding them to different locations. Softer rubber roll material would be more likely to absorb and equally disperse these sound waves.
Now that you know the properties of this type of material, you can take a look into the applications which it is used for:
- Shock absorbency and anti-vibration padding
- Seals and gaskets in high-stress applications: Seals can contain pressure and prevent leaks in mechanical systems. Can also be used at containing contamination and in plumbing applications.
- Cushioning and bumper pads: In any mechanical system or machine which allows parts to impact one another, rubber padding will protect the mechanical parts from wear and abrasion, keeping them in working condition for a longer period of time
- Protective surfacing: Used to protect commercial equipment from aesthetic and comprehensive damage. Also, rubber roll material can be used to separate machinery from its operator, other moving parts, and the surrounding area.
- Hard rubber sheets and Rolled rubbers: These are very versatile products. They can be used for a number of things such as:
- Mounts for metalworking (i.e. removing dents, straightening out bends)
- Hammering or filing objects while preventing scratching
- Jewelry work
- Hardening wire or sheet metal
Now, when looking for searching for solid rubber for your application, you can know which properties are most important to the success of your project. Perhaps you can use some hard rubber sheets or rolled rubbers for mounting, padding, protection, or working with metals. We cannot stress the importance of thoroughly knowing all pertinent information about a specific type of rubber. Commercial applications depend on this knowledge, and it is likely that the information is vital to your project as well!