Tech Talk Blog

Defined: Hydrophilic, Hydrophobic, Oleophilic, Oleophobic & Hygroscopic

February 27, 2019

Hydrophilic, Hydrophobic, Oleophilic, Oleophobic & Hygroscopic

When discussing enhanced materials we often use terms like “hydrophilic/hydrophobic” and “oleophilic/oleophobic.” Just what do these terms mean exactly? Let’s take a quick look.

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How do Surface Treatments Work? Part 1: Corona Treatment

December 6, 2016


It’s a back-to-basics question, but one that we are asked often. Surface treatments are generally separated into two categories: atmospheric and low-pressure (or vacuum). Both use energy to ionize gas and are very effective at altering the surface properties of materials. Both can also help you increase your manufacturing yield. Today we spotlight corona treatment:

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3 Key Benefits of Surface Modification

December 9, 2014

TriStar Plastics Corp. - 3 Key Benefits of Surface ModificationReading through some of our older posts, I noticed that we received some great feedback on our coverage of Plasma Surface Modification Improves Drone Aerodynamics. A topic that is still timely today. In this instance, our client needed to improve the bond strength on the wing edge of their drones. The end result after plasma treatment was a superior bond adhesion that excelled at resisting wind forces.

Today I wanted to review 3 key benefits of surface modification for all industries.

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Tech Tip: How do I measure the surface tension of plastics?

September 30, 2014

Measuring Surface AngleMeasuring surface tension can be done quite easily in the lab with the use of a goniometer (or surface contact meter). In fact, this is a key service of TriStar’s Surface Modification Division

The process begins by first measuring the baseline contact angles to determine the right surface modification method. Since the surface tension of liquids and the surface energy of materials must be matched, we add a droplet of water to the component to get the best reading. 

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Tips to Bond Silicone Rubber to Aluminum

September 23, 2014

Plasma cleaning of metal parts dramatically increases the success of overmolding.We’ve had a few questions lately about the best method of bonding rubber to aluminum before overmolding. It seems this bonding combination poses a tough challenge. And in many cases, we’re finding that companies want to achieve better bond strength without using harsh solvents. So how can you achieve one without the use of the other? Plasma cleaning is the answer.

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Rulon Reels In Custom Fishing Components

August 28, 2014

Rulon Reels In Custom Fishing ComponentsHere’s a fishing tale about the one that didn’t get away! 

Our team worked with a high-end fishing manufacturer to design a whole new reel drag system. The drag is actually a slip-clutch assembly that allows the line to move freely under the pressure of a sudden hook or the pull of a large fish ― basically keeping the fish engaged while the line is hauled in. 

Why did we choose Rulon LR and Rulon J formulas for this unique clutch application? It all came down to matching the right compounds to the right surface materials.

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Preparing Fluoropolymers for Bonding With Plasma Treatment

March 19, 2013

PTFE MoleculeWe are often asked about which method is best for preparing fluoropolymers for a bonding applicationThe most critical step is bonding is to ensure that you begin with a clean surface.

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Plasma Surface Modification – How does the process work?

January 22, 2013

I often receive calls asking to explain, “How does a low-pressure plasma tool actually work?”  I thought I’d share a diagram that we often use to explain the process.  The plasma process is widely used to critically clean and functionalize the surface of components.   After a plasma treatment, components are able to better accept paints, adhesives, inks and coatings.

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Increasing adhesion on hard-to-bond materials like Delrin

December 4, 2012

Blog 20121204Question: How do I bond Delrin to other materials?

Delrin (also known as Acetal, Polyocymethylene (POM), polyacetal, and polyformaldehyde) is an engineered polymer that is commonly used in the manufacturing of precision parts.  It is a fairly rigid plastic that exhibits low friction and maintains good dimensional stability and good abrasion resistance.  It also has low moisture absorption, good heat resistance, and (like most plastics) is a good dielectric.

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