In the world of business, construction, industry and manufacturing, it’s not too long ago that there was only one solution to the problem of needing to bond, fasten or mount: glue. But while adhesives still do the job, there were always downsides. For instance, there was the need to wait for the bond to cure. Not just that, polymer adhesives don’t enjoy very high temperatures; the surface needs to be meticulously prepared; glue compounds are typically bad for human beings’ lungs and skin; and you can really make one heck of a mess if you get it wrong.
But today, thanks to the ever-impressive speed of technological innovation – especially where profits are to be made and operations can be easier, faster, more reliable and cheaper – the alternative to glue has raced to the number 1 spot as the obvious choice for just about every business application.
We’re talking, of course, about double sided tapes.
This category of products has always been easy to apply, much safer for those using them, eminently affordable and a lot less messy than adhesives. But it’s the incredible product performance of the latest generations of double sided tapes that have really captured the attention of the commercial and industrial worlds, with application-specific tapes now more than a match for the glue alternative.
Depending on your precise requirements, industry and application, there is now a double sided tape for absolutely every business operation. Some of the high performers are:
Tissue: The double sided tapes with a tissue paper coating are the best for the widest range of general applications, as they’re easy to apply to so many surfaces and easy to remove.
Acrylic: For more industrial applications, acrylic tapes are the go thanks to their strong bonds and impressive resistance to extreme conditions.
Polyethylene foam: If you want an industrial tape that can cushion, absorb impacts, insulate and even dampen sounds, polyethylene is a popular choice.
Floor: When superb resistance to shearing is a must, the range of double sided floor tapes can really be relied on to keep things in place – like carpet or sheet flooring.
However, the full range of double sided tapes is much longer than that, as is the list of the ways each individual product type can be used. But no matter the tape, and the intended use, there’s no doubt that the latest innovations are more versatile, less aggressive and at least as effective as the alternatives.
- Use it instead of screws
Double sided tapes can not only replace adhesives, but screws as well! In fact, because screws bond only at one particular point, tape can cover a surface’s entire perimeter and therefore provide superior adhesion – without the invasive damage of a screw-hole.
- Use it for testing
Glues and other fasteners are designed to be effective because of their permanence. But with an appropriate tape, it’s possible to test the intended outcome of your bonding requirement and do no damage whatsoever if a tweak needs to be made.
- Use it for ad-hoc purposes
Similarly, double sided tapes are far superior when you need a quick and temporary solution to a problem. For instance, it’s super-simple to use an effective tape to bond a protective cover to a surface to protect it from chemical splashes or damage, and then whip it off once you’re done.
All that’s left to do is select the exact double sided tapes for your particular needs – and a great place to start is by considering the materials, temperatures and weight factors in play. Also consider:
The surface: Use thinner tapes for smooth surfaces like aluminium and glass, and thicker ones for powerful adhesion to cement, brick and wood.
The forces: Similarly, while adhesives bond very efficiently to glass, tiles and metals, the forces of attraction and repulsion of surfaces such as plastic can be significantly different.
The environment: Specific temperature-resistance is also built into the best performing double sided tapes, so that there are reliable products for both very low and very high temperatures, and also for moisture.
But because the full list of highly specific applications and tape products is so exhaustive, it’s always a good idea to go beyond an online guide and get in touch with an experienced specialist in the world of adhesive technology. Happy bonding!