How Rubber Products Made Their Way Into the Fastening Industry

Conventional fasteners—which include bolts, rivets, nuts, and screws— can efficiently mount a number of items to surfaces or surfaces to each other. However, regular fastening isn’t enough in certain industrial applications to prevent unwanted and unintentional flow of potentially damaging gases and liquids. When fasteners are used in conjunction or fused with a rubber product, like a rubber washer or rubber gasket, they form a much more effective seal against all kinds of external contaminants.

The Added Benefits of Rubber

A washer is a thin, disk-shaped plate with a hole in the center. It has a number of uses, such as a spring, wear pad, spacer, or locking device. Rubber washers help threaded fasteners in a number of ways. One example is it effectively distributes and maintains clamp load, which prevents movement or corrosion of the fastener.

A few of the reasons why rubber products have long been used with metal fastener parts include:

  • Certain rubber washers have a specific design to keep the nut or bolt from getting loose. A rubber spacer can be used with the assembly part that is most likely to turn, like the nut. It can be used under the bolt head when the bolt screws into threads in one part of the assembly.
  • A rubber washer can protect the assembled parts’ surface. A nut or bolt head that turns throughout the tightening process may damage the surface of the part around the hole, and a washer can take the brunt of the force instead of the part.
  • A thin material is sometimes part of the assembly, and a larger diameter rubber washer is useful in distributing the pressure of the bolt across a bigger part of the thin material. In these situations, the washer is used against the thin material to prevent pullout of the fastener or make sure the material is flatter.

The Power of Metal and Rubber for Fastening

In the fastening industry, rubber products are useful for a range of applications to support traditional fasteners.

A number of industries utilize this enhanced fastener solution, including:

  • Aerospace
  • Agriculture
  • Chemical manufacturing
  • Construction
  • Defense/military
  • Transportation
  • Automotive

Many of these industries use rubber washers and rubber gaskets for their enhanced sealing protection against the harsh environments and substances that are commonly encountered in the field. Improper sealing leads to loss of pressure and unwanted leaks in certain applications, which can result in equipment damage, cross-contamination, and inefficient processes. Any of those can further lead to expensive repair or maintenance operations, reduced productivity, and operational downtime.

Request Your Custom Rubber Products Today

Rubber washers and gaskets are essential in the fastening industry when they are used with traditional fasteners like nuts, bolts, and screws; the rubber components provide extra sealing protection against the environment and foreign substances. This can save equipment from excessive damage and expensive repairs, maximize productivity, and minimize operational downtime.

Thomas A. Caserta, Inc. manufactures quality rubber products for diverse and demanding industries. With more than 50 years of experience, we can design our rubber products to any specification to ensure they are the right fit for your needs. We also utilize the latest equipment that produces high-quality parts at competitive prices and quick turnaround times. Regardless of how big or small your job is, we can meet your needs. Our skilled and dedicated team strives to fulfill our number one goal: customer satisfaction. Contact us to request your custom rubber product quote today!

Rubber Products in the Aerospace Industry

The aerospace and aviation industry is one of the fastest growing industries on a global scale, affecting millions of people on a daily basis.

Reliable aircraft demands top tier components. These parts must have properties of high performance and endurance, since they will be exposed to a range of extreme weather conditions, such as excessively hot or cold temperatures, and different types of oils and gases. It is crucial that jets, commercial planes, and other aircraft can protect both passengers and cargo from the elements.

Many aerospace and aviation components are now being sourced from rubber. Rubber products are becoming more popular due to their durability under extreme environmental conditions and cost-effectiveness.

Rubber Designed for Flight

Rubber products are an excellent option for flight applications. Synthetic rubbers from various sources can withstand highly aggressive aerospace fluids, including:

  • Engine lubrication oils
  • Jet fuels
  • Hydraulic fluids
  • Oxidizers
  • Rocket propellants

Some of the common materials that engineers utilize for aerospace and aviation applications include:

  • Neoprene. This is a good general purpose elastomer that has many desirable characteristics. It has high resilience with low compression set and boasts moderate oil, ozone, and water resistance. It successfully operates within a temperature range of -65°F to 260°F. However, neoprene is not recommended for certain applications like phosphate esters, ketones, and brake fluids.
  • EPDM. Also known as Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer, EPDM contains excellent weatherability properties and low gas permeability. It works within a temperature range of -60°F to 280°F. While it is highly resistant to ozone, water, brake fluids, and other substances, it has a low resistance threshold for petroleum oils and diester lubricants.
  • Silicone. Able to effectively operate in temperatures from -150° to 500°F, silicone boasts the greatest total temperature range of currently used elastomers. While it also has excellent resistance to a number of environmental conditions and outside substances, such as dry heat, brake fluids, and high aniline point oils, it is not an optimal solution for certain applications due to poor tensile strength and tear.

Rubber materials have an array of qualities that make them the perfect choice for aerospace and aviation applications. Some characteristics that stand out include:

  • A high endurance threshold under extreme stresses
  • Endurance under extreme temperatures
  • No need for lubrication between parts
  • Very little maintenance required, if any
  • Sound and shock absorption
  • Long life spans

Applications That Demand Rubber Products

Rubber products have become popular across a broad spectrum of industries. In the aerospace and aviation industry, they have delivered superior performance in applications, such as:

  • Thermal insulation
  • Window and door seals
  • HVAC seals and gaskets
  • LED lighting gaskets
  • Vent ducts
  • Vibration dampening
  • Instrument panel seals and engine gaskets
  • O-rings utilized in connectors, valves, and other applications
  • Hydraulic actuators
  • Bleed air valves and fittings
  • Firewall seals
  • T-seals
  • Bumpers
  • Hatch seals and covers
  • Rubber extrusions
  • Extruded tubing and seals
  • Protective boots and bellows

At Thomas A. Caserta, our rubber products are highly customizable according to customer needs and preferences. Our engineers and technical specialists take great pride in designing and supplying safe, robust, and specialized rubber product solutions for a variety of needs.

Contact the Aerospace Rubber Manufacturing Experts

The team at Thomas A. Caserta works hard to ensure that each part for our customers meets or exceeds all the relevant industry specifications and standards. All our custom rubber aircraft components are manufactured in-house, and our stringent quality control protocols and attention to detail guarantee that each client receives a premium product for their particular need.

If you would like to learn more about our manufacturing capabilities or are interested in partnering with us for your aerospace/aviation product needs, reach out to us today.