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Monday, July 22, 2013

Shrink Sleeves That Bond to Neoprene Rubber?

Question:  Do any of your sleeves bond to neoprene?

Answer:  Yes, we do have shrink sleeves that bond to neoprene.  It just isn't quite that simple though (it never is, is it?).  Let me give you an example.

     Within the last few weeks, I spoke with an engineer who was faced with an unusual application.  He had about 10 feet of neoprene coated pipe sitting down at the bottom of the ocean (this was just one small segment of the line).  This segment of pipe was going to see EXTREME pipe movements; as much as 10 feet of pipe movement (primarily from the current at that particular point).  This was the second time they had been forced to repair the line; previously the neoprene was worn completely off by the ocean floor in that particular section abrading away the neoprene.  We are talking thousands upon thousands of dollars here for this repair; so they were looking at just about any option available that might just give a little bit more life to the pipe (they had essentially accepted that they would be repairing it again in the future). 

     This was a TOUGH application.  Possibly the toughest I've ever heard of.  To top it off; they expected the line to operate at elevated temperatures.  So; the long and the short of it was - yes, I have something that would bond there; but I couldn't possibly predict how much life it will add to your line here.  In addition; we were talking about a 3 shrink sleeve order; something like $40.00 (large pipe diameter).  Certainly not enough money in a $40.00 order to justify any kind of a product evaluation or testing program! 

     So, yes we DO have products that will bond to neoprene.  Before we get any further though, let's talk about your application as 'bonding to' and 'doing what you want it to do' can be two very, very different things. 

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