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Monthly Archives: April 2018

  • The True Costs of Industrial Rubber Products

    True CostsWhat are the true costs of industrial rubber products such as seals, gaskets, and insulation? Buying rubber materials and fabricating them in-house may seem cost-effective, but is your company really saving money? For that matter, are you sacrificing quality, consistency, and potential sales opportunities for a questionable cost savings?

    Companies that want to know the true costs of industrial rubber products need to understand the full scope of their manufacturing costs. Typically, these costs are divided into three categories: direct labor, direct material, and manufacturing overhead. If any of these costs are incorrect, your financial statements may under-report inventory value and the cost of goods sold.

    In this article from Elasto Proxy, we’ll examine each category of manufacturing costs so that you can consider how your in-house operations compare to outsourced fabrication. By understanding your true costs, you can make better business decisions and strengthen your manufacturing operations. Continue reading

  • Abrasive Water Jet Cutting vs. Guillotine Cutting for 45° Cuts on Bulb Trim Seals

    Abrasive Water Jet CuttingAbrasive water jet cutting and guillotine cutting can both produce 45° cuts on bulb trim seals, industrial rubber products that may contain metal wires. Abrasive water jet cutting uses a high-velocity, high-pressure stream of water and abrasive to cut through rubber, metal, and many other materials. Guillotine cutting uses a miter saw or metal blade instead. Like abrasive water jet cutting, guillotine cutting can cut through rubber profiles that contain metal reinforcements.

    For buyers of bulb trim seals, choosing the right cutting method involves a comparison of manufacturing costs. Compared to guillotine cutting, abrasive water jet cutting has higher hourly rates. Yet abrasive water jet cutting can also produce higher volumes of better quality cuts in less time. Cutting a 45° angle is challenging, even for an experienced guillotine operator. If the employee cuts too quickly, the wires won’t cut cleanly. This requires surface finishing, which adds labor costs and extends cycle times.

    As this article explains, abrasive water jet cutting can cost less than guillotine cutting for 45° cuts on bulb trim seals. Let’s look at an example to understand why this is the case. Continue reading

  • Gasket Compression in Metal Housings and Assemblies

    Gasket CompressionGasket compression in metal housings and assemblies can support sealing or contribute to gasket failure. That’s because rubber gaskets are resilient, but only to a point. Compressing a gasket within allowable limits forms a reliable seal. When a gasket is over-compressed, however, the rubber won’t rebound when the compressive stresses are removed. This creates a gap between the gasket and the surface of the housing or assembly. Gaps cause leaks, and seals that leak won’t support your designs.

    Material scientists calls the permanent deformation of the gasket material “compression set”, a term that’s used widely but not always fully understood. Engineers need to know the basics of compression set, but they also need to consider its limitations as a test method. With housings and assemblies, it’s essential to account for the entire application environment, including variables such as temperature and vibration. Relaxation, a related phenomenon, is also associated with gasket compression. Continue reading

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