Developed by DuPont in the 1930s, neoprene foam was the first synthetic rubber compound. Neoprene has widespread industrial applications, including in the automotive, manufacturing and aerospace industries. Whether you need customized gaskets and connectors or just a few flat sheets of foam, chances are there's a neoprene product that meets your needs.
Even though it's mostly used for insulation, neoprene foam comes in a dizzying array of sizes, strengths and shapes. If you're thinking about using neoprene foam to make your products or cushion your machinery, keep the following points in mind:
1. Neoprene foam comes in open- and closed-cell varieties.
2. Neoprene foam products are good for many industrial applications, including wire insulation, gaskets and extrusions.
3. Rolls of neoprene and neoprene foam sheets are available for flooring and other large-scale applications.
Decide on either open-cell or closed-cell neoprene foamLike other synthetic foams, neoprene foam comes in two varieties, open- and closed-cell. Because of its low density, open-cell neoprene is flexible, breathable and soft, making it ideal for packaging and securing delicate items. Most neoprene products are made from closed-cell foam, however, which offers good insulation, durability, chemical tolerance and strength.
Use neoprene foam to insulate hoses, wires and other mechanical partsWhereas open-cell foam is perfect for shipping and packaging, closed-cell foam is perfect for vibration dampening and insulation in industrial machinery. Neoprene's density, washability and resistance to chemicals make it the ideal choice for gaskets, washers, stoppers and other small weight-bearing parts. Some neoprene foam manufacturers also offer custom fabrication for hard-to-find pieces and parts.
Choose neoprene foam rolls for general or large-scale applicationsIf you need large quantities of uncut foam, look for neoprene foam suppliers selling sheets or rolls of their materials. These large patches of foam allow you to cover flat surfaces with neoprene or, if you have a design staff and cutting machines, fabricate your own custom products.
- Use a product's durometer rating and density to determine whether it's strong enough for your applications. Suppliers of neoprene foam include these ratings with other specifications like thickness and size.