The Plastics & Papers We Custom Fabricate for Your Electrical Insulation or Barrier Products
ESPE Manufacturing Co., Inc. fabricates and supplies an expansive range of custom plastic parts. Our company is a leader in fabricating and distributing fishpaper, vulcanized fiber, ITW Formex®, ITW Statex®, and Nomex®. We work with a wide variety of plastics and insulating materials to create high-quality components serve the demanding needs of our customers. Our team can provide processing and distributing services for a comprehensive list of non-metal materials.
Insulation Materials for Non-Metal Parts
Many designs call for the use of non-metal materials that are electrically or thermally insulating. At ESPE Manufacturing, we offer the following insulating polymers for use in the fabrication of parts:
Nylon is a strong, stiff plastic. It’s simple to machine and fabricate, offering a cost-effective solution for a variety of manufacturing needs. It is resistant to wear, features a high chemical resistance, and facilitates reduced noise and wear on tangential machinery parts.
Copaco is an electrically insulative paper made from cotton that features dielectric properties. The paper can be creased, formed, or punched, but is resistant to tearing or abrasion due to its tensile strength. The paper is typically used to wrap wires and may be inserted into wiring slot holes.
Kapton is a polyimide film that can withstand extreme environmental conditions. Different varieties of Kapton® have different strengths, but all of them are highly resistant to thermal damage and vibrations. Kapton® can be used in very harsh environments, such as space or solar farms.
Teflon, or polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), is a flexible, non-toxic material. The polymer is both chemically inert and highly resistant to chemical damage. Teflon® is predominantly used as an electric insulator, especially in tube form. Teflon is an ideal material for products that will be used in low-pressure, high-temperature environments.
GPO-3 is dimensionally stable, insulative plastic that holds its shape due to inherent stiffness and strength. This plastic is durable, even in environments with smoke, flame, and electrical exposure risks. It’s typically used as insulation in electromechanical equipment and can be produced at a low cost.
Forbon is an environmentally friendly, chemically pure vulcanized fiber. The cellulose material features high internal bond strength, which prevents delamination and separation. During the finishing process, the paper is run through a gelatinizing bath and a lamination treatment. The material resists damage from exposure to oil, water, solvents, and gasoline. Forbon has a wide range of applications.
Polycarbonate is a strong, stiff, and tough plastic. It has a high degree of optical clarity, which makes it ideal for use in displays, face shields, glasses, and skylights. The plastic can be easily fabricated, tooled, and thermoformed into the right shape for parts and products. Also, the surface can easily bond with solvent cements for architectural purposes. Polycarbonate is an electric insulator.
Acetal is a strong and stiff plastic often used for industrial, high-contact equipment. It features low friction, strong wear resistance, and good chemical resistance, which makes it ideal for use in industrial machinery. Acetal can easily be machined into specific or intricate parts.
Lexan is a well-known brand of polycarbonate. Please see ‘polycarbonate’ for more information or contact us with any questions about Lexan for your electrical insulation needs.
Bakelite is an inflexible, quick-molding plastic that retains its set shape. The material resists scratching and the harmful impacts of external factors such as heat, destructive solvents, and electricity. Bakelite is commonly used as a protective coating or a binding agent in electrical and automobile manufacturing processes.
Kydex plastic is a conductive sheet with a wide range of electrical and electronic applications. This material is commonly used to reroute current away from other components and toward an established ground connection. The material stays conductive even after thermoforming, making it ideal for creating complex conductive parts.
Polypropylene is an easily formed and machined thermoplastic. Though it can be welded if necessary, this plastic is resistant to most forms of heat, chemical, and electrical damage, which makes it ideal for use in semiconductors and electronics. The surface is nonporous and glossy, which makes it easy to sanitize for food-processing applications. Polypropylene is lightweight and insulative.
This laminate is produced using linen or cotton cloth and a phenolic resin. Phenolic can be machined into complex components, but should not be used as primary insulation despite its electrical properties. Phenolic is light, hard, and dense, with a robust strength-to-weight ratio. It comes in many different varieties in conjunction with reinforcement materials such as linen, nylon, and canvas.
Acrylic is a clear thermoplastic, sometimes known referred to as polymethyl methacrylate. This plastic is lightweight, shatter-resistant, and insulative. It has a transparency rating of 92%, making it a standard replacement for glass in many applications.
Nylatron plastics are low-friction nylon polymers. They have excellent mechanical properties and wear resistance, making them ideal for use in creating industrial components. The material can be easily extruded, fabricated, and machined into complex parts that match the design plan within very tight tolerances.
PVC is a type of vinyl with excellent electrical insulating and dielectric properties. That makes the material ideal for electric cables, switch boxes, and protective electrical elements. PVC is also resistant to weathering, corrosion, shock, and chemical rotting, so it can be used for underground electrical systems.
Plexiglass is a well-known brand of acrylic. Please see ‘acrylic’ for information, or contact us with any questions about Plexiglass for your electrical insulation needs.
Ragpaper is a generic name for Copaco. Please see ‘Copaco’ for information, or contact us with any questions about ragpaper for your electrical insulation needs.
Polyethylene is one of the world’s most common plastics. Primary features of this material include good ductility and a low coefficient of friction. The melting points on different types of polyethylene will vary, but they all have a relatively low resistance to heat. The majority of polyethylene materials are resistant to chemical damage, oxidation, and electricity, but the material can be turned brittle by UV radiation if not treated with carbon black.
Glastic is a fiberglass-reinforced thermoset polyester. This asbestos-free material is resistant to heat and flame damage, has strong electrical properties, and won’t shatter. Glastic is generally preformed into sheets and rods.
Rag/Mylar and Rag/Mylar/Rag
Rag/Mylar (RM) and Rag/Mylar/Rag (RMR) paper is made with cotton rag material and polyester film. The paper has good electrical properties, including dielectric strength, and may be easily fabricated, formed, and treated with resins or varnishes. The material is resistant to cuts and tears and typically used for insulation in motors, generators, and dry-type transformers.
One of the most versatile plastics, vinyl doesn’t corrode and is flame retardant. This material is used in a variety of process, piping, construction, and harsh environment applications because of its longevity and durability. It is also electrically insulating, making it ideal as backing on many insulation products. See PVC.
Delrin is an acetal resin with low friction and good wear resistance. It can perform in a wide range of temperatures from -40–120° C, making it ideal for use in a variety of industrial components. The material is strong and stiff enough to replace some metals.
Mylar is a polyester film often used to provide electrical insulation. It’s commonly used in industries such as automotive, lighting and cables, and wind energy, as well as in general industrial equipment. Mylar is resistant to wear and heat.
Nylon MDS is a combination of nylon and molybdenum disulfide. This material retains Nylon’s electrical and chemical properties while taking on additional mechanical and thermal properties. It can be used for sound dampening materials, insulation, and surface parts that require resistance to oils, greases, and solvents.
Visit our Nomex page for more information on how we may help fabricate aramid paper for your project.
Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is a generic name for Teflon. Please see ‘Teflon’ for information, or contact us with any questions about PTFE for your electrical insulation needs.
Acetate is a common plastic used in films or sheets. The plastic is transparent, flexible, and resistant to wrinkles, grease, water, and fogging. Acetate is commonly used to overlay images, windows, and processed foods.
Ultra-High Molecular Weight (UHMW) polyethylene is a thermoplastic that features wear, impact, and corrosion resistance. The material is used in a wide variety of industries for industrial parts, gears, seals, and bearings and bushings.
This synthetic rubber has high durability and strong chemical resistance. It also has good fire and UV radiation resistance. The material is typically fabricated as wires and cables. It can be produced with varying degrees of voltage ratings and sizes.
Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) is a rigid plastic material that is stronger than polystyrene and has a smooth, reflective surface. The material can bend without snapping or breaking and resists damage from low temperatures. ABS is extremely tough and impact-resistant.
Insulative Plastics from ESPE Manufacturing
ESPE Manufacturing Co., Inc. is an industry leader in producing fishpaper, vulcanized fiber, ITW Formex®, ITW Statex®, and Nomex® parts. We can also supply parts in a wide variety of other materials that match your design needs.
Contact our team today to learn more about our available materials and other services.