Rubber vs. Acrylic Adhesives - 3M Bonding Tape Selection Guide

Posted on Fri, Apr 27, 2012

3M tapes and fasteners feature advanced 3M rubber or acrylic adhesive formulas. Each have characteristics that affect production and end use performance. To help you make sure of finding the optimum tape for your particular application, you'll want to consider several factors:

  1. surface energy & contact
  2. stress conditions
  3. end use environment
  4. substrate characteristics (size, rigidity, thickness & weight

To make rubber adhesives, natural or synthetic rubbers are made tacky by mixing synthetic with various compounds. Individual elements do not change, the components are simply mixed together to produce an adhesive. This means rubber adhesives have:

  • high initial adhesion
  • some adhesion buildup   
  • good shear strength                                      
  • moderate temperature resistance
  • good solvent resistance
  • fair UV resistance
  • moderate durability

Where do you find Rubber adhesives - most masking tapes (paper), most packaging tapes (plastics), vinyl and plastic backing.  This category of solutions are best when you want quick adhesion and the maximum holding power in the shortest amount of time.  Consider Double Coated tapes when you need quick bond to paper and paper board, or most fiber based products.

To make acrylic adhesives, plastic compounds are synthesized to obtain specific chemical structures that are tacky. Acryclics can be formulated to produce specific performance characteristics. This means acrylic adhesives have:

  • fair initial adhesion
  • gradual adhesion buildup
  • high shear strength
  • high temperature resistance
  • excellent solvent resistance
  • excellent UV resistance
  • excellent durability

Where do find Acrylic adhesive:   On backings made of Polyester, Foils, Teflons, Tedlar, Kaptons, and other Polypropylene single side tapes.  Best to use when you want long tern holding, high temperature, and extreme exposure to conditions.  Cosider Double Coated tapes when you need high holding power and adhesion to a wide variety of substrate surfaces,

Now that you have identified the characteristics of each adhesive options you are able to make an informed decision when it comes to determining which adhesive will optimize end use performance and production value. Ultimately, the decision comes down to comparing the flexibility of the adhesive and it's reaction to your substrate.  

Gleicher experts are here to work with you and help you determine the best product for your design objectives.

Learn more about 3M bonding tapes,

Read more about TESTING on our Blog: How to test adhesive tapes for industrial assembly applications

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