Frequently asked questions about UHMW/PE

 

 

What is the temperature range of UHMW/PE?  

The Spiratex Company’s standard blends of UHMW/PE are good up to an ambient temperature of 185F.  We also manufacturer a high-temp blend of UHMW that is good up to an ambient of 265F.

 

What is mechanical grade or reprocessed UHMW/PE? 

Concern for the environment is of great importance to Spiratex. UHMW/PE is one plastic that can be recycled.  Here at Spiratex we collect unused and trimmed scrap for recycling into mechanical grade UHMW/PE.  FDA requirements do not allow for certification of reprocessed UHMW/PE, but this mechanical grade is perfectly effective for non-food applications like chain guides or bumpers.

 

What is the quality of reprocessed, mechanical grade UHMW/PE?

Reprocessed UHMW/PE has the same wear characteristics as virgin UHMW/PE.  It also has the same low friction characteristics as virgin UHMW/PE.  There are wildly different anecdotal results noted by various end users regarding the wear capabilities of reprocessed UHMW/PE.  Some people say it lasts longer; some people think it wears out quicker.  However, good quality reprocessed UHMW/PE, as made by Spiratex, should have the same life as virgin UHMW/PE.

 

What is the molecular weight of UHMW/PE?

Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW/PE) has an average molecular weight greater than 3,100,000 as defined by ASTM D4020 standards for UHMW/PE. UHMW/PE is a linear polyolefin that is made up extremely long chains of polyethylene, which all align in the same direction. Commercially offered resins are available from 3-6 million molecular weight, with resins in the 3.1-4.5 range having the best combination of impact strength and abrasion resistance. The molecular weight of UHMW/PE must be approximated using the solution viscosity procedure found in ASTM D4020. There are several different trade names for UHMW/PE throughout the industry. Our proprietary trade name is “Ultrex”.

 

Can UHMW/PE be injection molded?

The different methods of molecular weight calculations from around the world have led to some claims that UHMW/PE can be injection molded.  No one has proven this to be true. We have tested what is supposedly injection-molded UHMW and found it to be HDPE, which is a completely different plastic.

What is the temperature range of UHMW/PE?

The Spiratex Company’s standard blends of UHMW/PE are good up to an ambient temperature of 185F.  We also manufacturer a high-temp blend of UHMW that is good up to an ambient of 265F.

What is mechanical grade or reprocessed UHMW/PE?

Concern for the environment is of great importance to Spiratex. UHMW/PE is one plastic that can be recycled.  Here at Spiratex we collect unused and trimmed scrap for recycling into mechanical grade UHMW/PE.  FDA requirements do not allow for certification of reprocessed UHMW/PE, but this mechanical grade is perfectly effective for non-food applications like chain guides or bumpers.

What is the quality of reprocessed, mechanical grade UHMW/PE?

Reprocessed UHMW/PE has the same wear characteristics as virgin UHMW/PE.  It also has the same low friction characteristics as virgin UHMW/PE.  There are wildly different anecdotal results noted by various end users regarding the wear capabilities of reprocessed UHMW/PE.  Some people say it lasts longer; some people think it wears out quicker.  However, good quality reprocessed UHMW/PE, as made by Spiratex, should have the same life as virgin UHMW/PE.

What is the molecular weight of UHMW/PE?

Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW/PE) has an average molecular weight greater than 3,100,000 as defined by ASTM D4020 standards for UHMW/PE. UHMW/PE is a linear polyolefin that is made up extremely long chains of polyethylene, which all align in the same direction. Commercially offered resins are available from 3-6 million molecular weight, with resins in the 3.1-4.5 range having the best combination of impact strength and abrasion resistance. The molecular weight of UHMW/PE must be approximated using the solution viscosity procedure found in ASTM D4020. There are several different trade names for UHMW/PE throughout the industry. Our proprietary trade name is “Ultrex”.

Can UHMW/PE be injection molded?

The different methods of molecular weight calculations from around the world have led to some claims that UHMW/PE can be injection molded.  No one has proven this to be true. We have tested what is supposedly injection-molded UHMW and found it to be HDPE, which is a completely different plastic.