What is Rubber Extrusion?
Rubber Extrusion is a process used to manufacture linear rubber products. It is a process where an elastic material undergoes plastic deformation by the application of a force causing that material to flow through an extrusion die. The material adopts the cross-sectional profile of the die and if the material has suitable properties, that shape is retained in the final extrudate.
There are generally two main types of extruder used to push the rubber through the die, these are screw extruders and ram extruders and the choice of which to use will generally depend on the length and quantity of the extrusion profile required.
The extrusion process shapes the workpiece in a soft, pliable unvulcanised state, after which it is vulcanised to harden the workpiece into a usable final product.
The vulcanisation process takes place once the profile has been extruded generally using microwaves, steam autoclaves, hot baths or hot air.
Once the extrusion profile has been cured it is inspected and packed ready for despatch.
What are the different types of rubber extrusion products?
Extruded rubber products can be lightweight, flexible, durable and long-lasting. The continuous rubber extrusion process can produce parts in a variety of lengths and shapes relatively cost-effectively and with very little material waste.
Common extruded rubber products are rubber bushings, rubber cords, door seals, trims, tubes, hoses, pipes, gaskets, O-rings, and weatherstrips.
What are the different rubber extrusion materials?
The most common material for rubber extrusion is EPDM which is a synthetic rubber compound with excellent properties suitable for most extrusion profile applications. However, we can also supply extrusions in other rubber compounds such as Natural, Nitrile, Silicone and Neoprene.
Advantages of Rubber Extrusion:
- Efficient process
- Minimal waste product
- Lower production costs
- Flexibility of products produced
Disadvantages of Rubber Extrusion:
- Variations in size of product
- Product limitations
- High initial cost setup