Is HDPE Sheet and Acetal Homopolymer Sheet the same?
Here is another popular question asked by our clients. Is HDPE the same as Acetal Copolymer / Delrin Acetal Homopolymer? No, they are two totally different materials. Although the natural color of both is a milky white to opaque white, and they do look a bit similar, they are not. (HDPE is milky white to almost translucent depending on thickness, and the Acetal materials are a more opaque white to slightly milky – once again depending on thickness . See picture below of .500″ thick samples of HDPE and Acetal sheets)
HDPE and Acetal – Some Differences
The HDPE sheet and rod is a softer material, and is commonly known for its FDA certification and used in numerous food applications, such as: one gallon milk jugs, cutting boards, colored water glasses/cups, and many, many more. While it can be machined, because it is a bit softer and lighter, the tolerances it can be machined to are not very tight. It is not bondable, so it makes a great non-stick surface for sticky foods and adhesives.
The Acetal Copolymer and the premium Delrin® Acetal Homopolymer also have FDA certification, and are used heavily in the food processing industry. This material is a more mechanical material and is used in bearing and wear applications, cams, feeder screws, etc. This material is can be machined to tight tolerances, and will wear for long periods without lubrication. Due to its exceptional wear properties, it is not bondable, thus requiring mechanical fastening or threads to assemble. It has a very low water absorption, and you will find it in your toilet tank as the white moving parts in the filler mechanism. It is an extremely popular material for machinists, as it works much like soft brass.
While HDPE Sheet and Acetal Sheet look similar, they perform quite a bit differently.
While both materials are FDA approved, are machinable and can be used to make rigid wear resistant parts, they are two different resins and have drastically different physical properties. Another major difference is in the weight of these items, HDPE sheet and rod material weighs about 35% less than the Acetal sheet and rod material. Please check the data sheets for more information to assist in proper material selection.Acetal Data Sheet and HDPE Sheet Data
Acetal is commonly known as: Delrin Homopolymer Acetal, Tecaform AH,Ensital, Unital, Pomalux, Ultraform and many more.
HDPE is also known as: Ultraethylux,Densetec, Polystone G, Fortiflex, Versadur, Hostalen, and many more.
A wide variety of plastics are available in sheet form.
The term: ‘Plastic Sheet‘ or ‘Plastic Sheets’ is more of a general statement covering over a hundred types of plastic materials and plastic products. Some of the most popular plastic materials made as a sheet are:
In addition to the wide range of plastic materials available as plastic sheet, most of these materials are also available as: thin gauge or film, strip, plate, block, slab and plastic panels. The thin gauge or film materials are frequently available with or without a pressure sensitive adhesive also called ‘tape’. Sheet in some materials is available over 4.0″ thick and perhaps as thick as 8.0″ thick in a few materials. The standard sheet size on most of our plastic sheets is either 24″ X 48″ or the larger 48″ X 96″ sheet size; although some materials are available as: 48″ X 120″, 60″ X 96″ or 72″ X 96″. Contact us with with questions on your required piece sizes, we are happy to provide plastic sheets cut to size.
While there are lots and lots of different materials available as plastic sheet, there may only be one or two materials that are right for your application. We want to assist with your search. If you need help choosing the proper plastic material for your application, check out our free Plastic Material Selector Guide. Also, feel free to contact us for further assistance. As a leading plastic sheet distributor since 1975, we feel that we are your best choice as your new plastic sheet and sheets supplier. Give us a call at 866-832-9315.
Can we get colored Acetal Copolymer – Delrin® Homopolymer Rod?
We get this question frequently.
The easy answer is yes, however, the most common available colors are Black and Natural (white in color). But to continue the thought, we have several manufacturers that run ‘Medical’ grades of Acetal Copolymer as well as Acetal Homopolymer (ie: Dupont Delrin® 150SA Homopolymer Acetal) in several colors. These materials are special run, but can frequently purchase by the standard length without a custom run. The biggest factor may be the price. The colored version of Acetal Copolymer – Delrin Homopolymer Acetal materials are dramatically more expensive.
Colored Acetal Copolymer – Dupont Delrin® Homopolymer 150SA Rod
While price is a factor, the benefits may out weigh the cost. Many of our clients use these colored rods to help differentiate their product from their competition. With colors that can come close to a logo color or match a machine, these advantages are clearly visible. Having a special color available to machine small to medium runs of your product can save you thousands over molding a new part for trials.
What colors can I get in Acetal Copolymer or Dupont Delrin® 150SA Homopolymer Acetal Rod?The range is a bit limited, but does include: brown, dark blue, dark green, gray, light blue, light green, red, rust and yellow (and of course Natural and Black). For details on the properties of these materials click here: Acetal Copolymer and Dupont Delrin® 150SA Homopolymer Acetal.Dupont™ Delrin® is a popular acetal homopolymer brand name and the most commonly used acetal homopolymer.
For specifics on your requirement, please contact us for availability and pricing. Email or call 866-832-9315
We can supply both the Acetal Copolymer and the premium Dupont Delrin 150SA Homopolymer acetal from our premium suppliers: Ensinger Plastics, Z/L Plastics, Rochling Engineered Plastics and others in special formulations.