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How to Attach Rubber Parts: Adhesive Taping vs. Mechanical Fastening

Video: How to Attach Taped Rubber Parts Video: How to Attach Taped Rubber Parts

Learn how adhesive taping attaches rubber parts to plastic, metal, and glass surfaces – and why taped gaskets provide a strong, reliable alternative to mechanical fasteners such as bolts and screws. Then, download the Make It or Buy It? E-Book

Rubber parts such as door seals, edge trim, and weather stripping can be attached to plastic, metal, or glass surfaces. Mechanical fasteners like screws and bolts are strong and reliable, but installation is time-consuming. The use of adhesive tapes can speed assembly, but taping also offers other important advantages. By understanding these benefits, and how high-strength adhesive tapes compare to mechanical fasteners, you can choose the best attachment method for your rubber parts. If taping is right for your sealing or insulation application, you can then decide which type of taping you need.

Advantages of Adhesive Taping

Unlike some metal screws and bolts, adhesive tapes won’t rust or corrode. Since there are no holes to drill, patching isn’t required when a part is removed. Mechanically-attached assemblies can loosen over time and cause noise and vibration, too. Adhesive tapes provide a reliable, permanent bond and can expand and contract with changes in temperature. Stress dissipates throughout the tape’s core, and isn’t just concentrated at the adhesive bond line. By contrast, stress in screwed joints concentrates in the screw’s threaded portions, which are vulnerable under variable load conditions.

Adhesive tapes also conform to surface irregularities such as gaps. These surfaces remain clean and smooth since there are no raised bolts or screw heads. Some gasket tapes are approved for use by original equipment manufacturers (OEM) in the automotive industry. Others are suitable for use in aircraft interiors. Sealing tapes that can withstand sunlight, humidity, and a wide range of service temperatures are also available. Although taping is sometimes used for temporary fastening, manufacturers and assemblers can also choose strong, reliable gasket tapes for permanent joining.

Types of Gasket Tapes: HATS and PSA

TapingSealing tapes from suppliers such as 3M are usually made from acrylic foam and use either a pressure-sensitive adhesive (PSA) or a heat-activated taping system (HATS). Specifications include thickness, core and liner color, and liner material. For product designers and technical buyers, application requirements are especially important to consider. In the automotive industry, for example, factors can include vehicle paint system, automotive interior materials, and environmental conditions. High-performance tapes that are used with aircraft exteriors can withstand solvents such as deicing agents.

Both HATS and PSA tapes offer advantages. For example, HATS high-bond tape fuses together the tape and the rubber part. This makes it a good choice for door seals, which might otherwise come apart from repeating pushing on the door assembly. HATS also features strong stress-handling and weather stripping capabilities for outdoor use. PSA tape is double-coated with a high-performance acrylic adhesive for high tack and peel resistance. It’s used to bond rubber parts to rough or porous surfaces, and this removable double-faced tape is recommended for attaching tape to surface for subsequent gasket attachment.

Make It or Buy It?

Have you tried adhesive taping instead of mechanical fastening for industrial rubber products such as door and window seals, edge trim, and weather stripping? As a supplier of out-of-the-box sealing solutions, Elasto Proxy can custom-fabricate taped gaskets that arrive on-time and ready-to-install. Yet maybe you’re unsure if outsourcing is the right business decision. To help you determine if gasket fabrication – including taping – is right for your organization, we’ve developed an e-book called “Make It or Buy It? The Business Case for Custom Fabrication.” Download your free copy today.

Download the Make It or Buy It? E-Book

Clyde SharpeClyde Sharpe General Manager at Elasto Proxy