Custom sealing solutions aren’t just for large companies with high production volumes. Small-to-medium manufacturers (SMMs) can also benefit by outsourcing the fabrication of industrial rubber products. From cutting, bonding, and laminating to kitting and installation, value-added manufacturing saves you time and money. By outsourcing component-level fabrication to Elasto Proxy, you can also know your true costs and benefit from better perceptions of quality.
Cutting, Bonding, and Laminating
Some smaller manufacturers still cut rubber products in-house. They claim it costs less to use their own hand tools for lower volumes. They also believe (incorrectly) that custom sealing always requires expensive tooling and setup fees. Water jet cutting, a tool-less process, uses a highly pressurized stream of water to cut rubber sheets and profiles. In addition, this form of digital manufacturing at Elasto Proxy eliminates setup fees because it works directly from your CAD files.
The clean cuts that our water jet equipment makes also supports gasket bonding. Cold bonding, a tool-less process, is great for lower volumes of finished gaskets. Plus, like other gasket bonding processes from Elasto Proxy, there aren’t any setup fees. Lamination, another custom fabrication process, creates sandwich-like structures from sheets of rubber materials with specific thermal, acoustic, and vibration dampening properties. This custom insulation can include a pressure-sensitive adhesive (PSA) backing.
Kitting and Installation
Cutting, bonding, and laminating can be combined with kitting for even greater value. As Canadian Fabricating & Welding explains, MetalCraft Marine is a manufacturer of high-speed aluminum boats that buys custom-packaged kits from Elasto Proxy. Each kit contains all of the insulation for a boat build, which helps the Kingston, Ontario manufacturer to avoid excessive ordering. Kitting also promotes efficiency because installers don’t have to search for individual parts and can simply peel-and-stick the insulation.
Custom sealing improves installation in other ways, too. SMMs who cut rubber in-house often use knives that can make jagged cuts. Installers can’t align these uneven edges like they could with water jet cuts. Attaching and detaching an PSA-backed product to align it also weakens the adhesive bonds. Plus, uneven cuts may cause installers to stretch materials. Because rubber expands and contracts with changes in temperature, a rubber product that fit during installation could shrink and pull away from the substrate.
True Costs and Perceived Quality
Custom sealing also provides SMMs with the true costs of industrial rubber products. Asking your employees to cut gaskets may seem cost-effective, but not if they’re highly paid workers like welders. Plus, mis-cuts may result in significant amounts of shop waste. Purchasing personnel won’t know if an installer makes a mis-cut, or if materials were nested to maximize material yields. SMMs also pay more for materials because they buy in lower-volume quantities than a custom fabricator like Elasto Proxy.
Finally, custom fabrication adds value by promoting overall perceptions of quality. For example, when a potential buyer evaluates mobile equipment, window gaskets that don’t fit properly won’t go unnoticed. Similarly, a potential buyer who’s in the market for machinery can tell if the rubber gasket on a viewing window is mis-cut. Door and window gaskets, rubber seals, and thermal and acoustic insulation can either support overall perceptions of product quality or detract from it. The choice is yours.
Custom Sealing from Elasto Proxy
Are you a small-to-medium manufacturer (SMM) that needs low-to-medium volume quantities of seals, gaskets, and insulation? Elasto Proxy is a value-added manufacturer with cutting, bonding, laminating and kitting capabilities. We can also help you to speed installation, track your true costs, and promote your buyers’ experience. You’ll also like how we can leverage our purchasing power on your behalf and convert materials with speed and efficiency.
To request a quote or learn more about us, contact Elasto Proxy.