January 27th, 2011
For any extreme sport involving the use of waterborne crafts, the availability of adequate, back-up emergency flotation devices should be a top priority for manufacturers, suppliers and – ultimately – the participants themselves. Specialist foam products can go a long way to providing the ideal water safety features needed for such activities.
Inflatable aids can of course be a lifesaver, but they are always at risk of possible puncture. Much better are foam products made from what are known as ‘closed cell foams’.
Unlike open cell foams in which the air pockets or ‘cells’ are linked to each other and permit any influx of air or liquid to saturate the entire foam body, closed cell foams contain cells which are hermetically closed off, thus preventing water or air from entering even when one part of the foam body is damaged.
Polystyrene is of course a closed cell foam commonly used for flotation devices. The disadvantage with polystyrene is that, though light, it is also relatively fragile and therefore susceptible to breakage in more volatile aquatic situations.
Far more resilient are closed cell polyethylene, or ‘PE’, foams. These include plastazote and jiffycell. PE foams are available in a range of densities, with those of a medium density weighing approximately 45 kg per cubic metre. PE foams are also safe and easy to cut; and are sufficiently flexible to wedge into slightly smaller alcoves. Furthermore, PE foams do not suffer from any damage following long-term exposure to water.
At Technical Foam Services, we can offer great deals on a wide range of PE foams.
December 27th, 2010
When choosing the most appropriate foam for a commercial application it is strongly advisable that all options are kept well and truly open; foams vary considerably, not only in what they are capable of, but also in what they could potentially be capable of.
Polyurethane, or ‘PU’ foam, for example, cover a wide gamut of applications, depending on their pore – or ‘cell’ – structure. Not only do PU foam products range from toys to industrial filters, they have also been developed as specialist engineered foam solutions. An example is found in memory foam, or visco memory foam, for use in bedding mattresses. These PU confor foams respond to shape and body heat to provide full body support. Such slow recovery foams have since also been employed in other areas where a similar comfortable, supportive fit is required, such as sports helmets.
It could be the case, however, that polyethylene, or ‘PE’, foams are more appropriate. PE foams are found in applications as diverse as swimming aids and insulation materials. PE foams have also been developed as highly protective, moisture-resistant foams for the packaging of delicate and vulnerable items. Such foams include plastazote and jiffycell.
With such a varied choice of foam materials, it is essential to choose a foam producer that does not limit its offerings to one type of foam but, on the contrary, is willing to explore the pros and cons of all known foam options available.
We at Technical Foam Services can do this and much more: we regularly develop unique engineered foam solutions on behalf of our customers’ needs.
December 8th, 2010
In a world of e-commerce, in which both retail and business to business sales are predicted to become ever more reliant on delivery services, the need for appropriate, economical packaging becomes all the more crucial. In this world, various grades of foam are already playing a vital part.
High density polyethylene, or PE, foams such as Plastazote and jiffycell, for example, are non-abrasive, chemically inert foams that are highly shock-absorbent, moisture resistant, and temperature resistant. Such foams are therefore ideal for protecting highly delicate or vulnerable items, regardless of the distance travelled, local temperature variations, or the number of occasions the package is handled during its journey. PE foams will also insulate sensitive technical instruments from the effects of static electricity.
In addition, because such packaging PE foams are what are known as closed cell foams, the unlikely chance that any damage does occur to one part of the foam will have no impact on the rest of the foam. PE foams of this nature therefore contrast favourably with other packaging formats such as inflated air bags which can easily become pierced.
Other types of packaging foam include polyurethane, or PU, foams such as undulating ‘egg-crate’ polyether foams and Chipfoam.
The advantage that all foams share is that despite their high protection levels they are still relatively light and therefore help to minimise transport costs. They can also be easily machined or shaped so as to fit around particular items in a precise and secure way.
At Technical Foam Services, we can produce a variety of shaped foams and machined foam for all packaging needs.
December 5th, 2010
Many domestic, artisan and recreational challenges are often solved on an ad hoc basis through the use of foam; bright individuals are often intuitively drawn to the flexible, absorbent, or insulating qualities of foam when looking to repair, fill or replace items, or even when creating new items from scratch. Rather than improvising solutions from foam however, it is often very easy and inexpensive to secure bespoke machined foam products from a specialist foam producer.
A prime example of machined foam products in use can be found in the film and theatrical industries. Rather than improvising safe but rather unconvincing-looking props such as axes from pieces of wood, plastic or foam joined with tape, a range of realistic-looking, simulated props can instead be created by machining, say, one of the appropriate grades of polyurethane, or PU, foams. Similarly, some grades of polyethylene, or PE foams, can be used to create very realistic-looking theatrical face masks.
It is only a short step away from such specialist uses where one sees such machined foam products also being applied to other applications. Promotional and recreational items such as foam dice and large foam hands, for example, are safe and relatively cheap to produce; yet like their theatrical counterparts, are also highly visually effective.
Moving further along the continuum one also sees machined face masks made from PE foams being used in a protective, rather than ornamental, capacity in various sporting environments.
At Technical Foam Services we are a UK foam company that can also produce a variety of machined foam for all your needs and at highly competitive rates.
November 5th, 2010
In recent years there has been growing concern about the amount of packaging used in the retail sector and the implications this packaging has for the environment. Whilst there is no getting away from having to protect items that would otherwise become easily damaged during handling and transportation, environmentally-conscious businesses have found in certain polyethylene, or PE, foams, a solution that goes a long way towards helping to resolve this dilemma.
High density PE foam products, including plastazote and jiffycell, combine firmness with a soft non-abrasiveness that make them ideal for cushioning vulnerable items during storage and transportation. Their relative environmental friendliness however begins at the manufacturing stage, since during this process no carbons are released into the atmosphere.
The environmental protection advantages of high density PE foams continue once they are put into use as a packaging medium. Their combination of density and relative lightness of weight means that with less foam and a lighter product, suppliers require fewer outer packaging materials, fewer transportation vehicles, and less storage capacity; all of which results in less energy being expended.
Facilities for recycling foam in the UK are steadily increasing and high density PE foams are also completely recyclable. It should also be noted that high density PE foams are chemically inert; so much so that plastazote is often used as a safe, protective wrap for the archiving of delicate historical artefacts.
Finally, PE foams do not have to be sourced from overseas; at UK foam company Technical Foam Services, we can supply all your PE foam needs at highly competitive rates.
October 17th, 2010
Foam is a lightweight, inexpensive, and versatile material that can be cut, shaped and altered cosmetically for almost any application. When cutting foam, however, there are several major variables that need to be taken into account. It is therefore recommended that such cutting tasks always be carried out by a trained professional.
One of the most frequent methods of foam cutting, for example, is by using hot wire cutters. Hot wire cutting involves the application of oscillating blades cutting vertically and horizontally to produce an extremely smooth and accurate cut. Hot wire cutting is robust enough to cut rigid foams as well as flexible foams.
Hot wire cutting may however be dangerous if used on polyurethane or PU foams, since the process can result in the release of toxic fumes. It is vital therefore that such cutting is carried out by a trained professional using the appropriate protective clothing.
When cutting polyethylene, or PE foams, on the other hand, their firmness, and therefore difficulty in cutting, may tempt the inexperienced operator to increase the heat. This action, however, will be avoided by an expert foam cutter as it will tend to leave a PE residue on the blade.
Other methods for cutting foam include water jet cutting, whereby powerful shots of abrasive materials suspended in water are fired as a continuous stream, to effect a swifter and smoother incision.
At Technical Foam Services we have ample experience and facilities for cutting any type of foam to any size, both quickly and cost-effectively.
October 14th, 2010
Extreme sports, such as mountain biking, rock climbing, and indeed any activity in which participants subject themselves to extraordinary physical challenges in order to obtain thrills, have grown in popularity in recent years.
The increasing popularity of extreme sports has brought with it of course the greater likelihood of serious injury. Fortunately, many such injuries can be significantly minimised by the use of appropriate safety gear such as helmets and body protection.
To encourage sports participants to wear such protective gear it is important that it is lightweight, comfortable, and unobtrusive. The use of various polyethylene or PE foams, in the construction of these safety items has gone a long way towards ensuring their successful take-up by extreme sports fans.
The major advantage of PE closed cell foams, including plastazote and jiffycell, is that they do not collapse and shrink under pressure like spongy, open cell foams. Instead such closed cell foams retain their essential cushioning and buoyancy qualities whilst remaining lightweight and completely flexible.
PE foams are also temperature-resistant and do not therefore contribute any additional heat discomfort to the wearer.
In short, used for such applications as helmet linings and knee and elbow pads, PE closed cell foams offer full protection whilst doing nothing to impede the comfort or movement of the user. PE foams moreover have the added advantage of resisting the impact of dirt and the growth of mould.
At Technical Foam Services, as experienced foam suppliers, we supply a wide range of PE foams for a number of extreme sports applications.
February 11th, 2010
Polyethylene foams, or PE foams, are extremely versatile foams with a wide variety of applications. It is a testament of their versatility that they have been fundamental in the development of a revolutionary swim aid – the SwimFin.
Due to the unique properties of PE foams, they are able to be moulded at very high temperatures, and this means that they are ideal for applications where specific forms are required. This makes PE foam ideally suited to create the highly hydrodynamic shape of the SwimFin.
The other critical property of PE foams in relation to a buoyancy aid, is its ability to carry air within the honeycomb structure of its cells. This means that PE foams are perfectly buoyant, and are therefore foam is the ideal material for a high quality swimming aid such as the SwimFin.
The SwimFin has revolutionized the world of swimming aids for a variety of reasons. By wearing it on your back it gives you an unparalleled level of freedom, as your arms aren’t hindered by a cumbersome “traditional” floatation device. Also, its position in the centre of a swimmers body means that it works alongside your natural buoyancy and will not lead to an unnatural level of buoyancy, which generally occurs with “traditional” foam floats that can leave a swimmer swimming slightly above the water.
The development of such an efficient swimming aid as the SwimFin is testament to the unique properties of foam, making it a material uniquely suited to address the problems of the modern age. Here at foam suppliers company Technical Foam Services, we supply a wide range of foam cut to size to make it suitable for different applications.
January 27th, 2010
As leading foam suppliers, Technical Foam Services offer the consumer a wide variety of foam cut to size to satisfy any concern, whether it be practical or aesthetic. And by choosing to foam, either in your industry or personal life, you can be sure that your specific requirements will be met.
Foam is considered a unique, modern material as it can be coloured and cut to size to fit a huge variety of applications. Technical Foam Services, we give you the oppourtunity to tell us exactly what your requirements are. So, if you’re soundproofing your home then they will be able to offer you foam cut to size to the specific dimensions of your home, and in an aesthetic style that complements your décor.
Technical Foam Services offer all the big names in PE foams, such as Plastazote, Evazote, EVA foam, Jiffycell and Stratocell, so you can be sure of only the highest quality and expert service when choosing to work with us.
As already mentioned, PU and PE foams come in wide variety of shapes and colours, and some specific uses are as follows. Due to the versatility of the medium, Technical Foam Services can offer the consumer foam hands (in any bespoke style), seat cushions, kneelers and sponges and can be produced in any colour.
Foam offers the consumer a unique oppourtunity in that it can be worked to almost any shape and can answer many needs of the consumer, so why not tell Technical Foam Services exactly what you need for a bespoke foam product?
January 14th, 2010
There are certain properties of foam that make it the perfect packaging solution, and in the modern age foam manufacturers have become closely aligned with the packaging industries.
Foam is an extraordinarily versatile material, making it perfect for a wide range of packaging applications. As foam can be cut to size, it means that it is ideal for a whole range of packaging requirements. Polyurethane foams (die-cut) and polyethylene foams (routed and water-jet cut), for example, are ideal as foam inserts, and can be used to hold items in place during transit. We at Technical Foam Services offer the consumer black foams that are ideal for this particular purpose, and are less available than their standard grey counterparts.
Foam can be produced to a variety of densities; it can also offer uniquely durable packaging solutions. PE ranges of Plastazote, Jiffycell and Stratocell are particularly suitable as durable packaging as they are high density foams.
Foam packaging is also waking up to concerns regarding renewability, and there is now chipform packaging available which is built from reconstituted scraps of PU foams bonded back together at varying densities. Chipform makes an excellent foam packaging solution as it is considerably less expensive than its PE equivalents.
Due to the “malleable” nature of foams, it can also be shaped to fit specific packaging requirements. Egg crate foam, for example, is a standard polyether foam that is cut using a special machine to give its form a “dimpled” quality, ideal for the packaging of eggs.