What’s So Special About Blue Nylon Besides the Colour?
You’ve seen it being used. Perhaps you’ve used in your own applications. But aside from the nice blue colour that is so distinctive, what is it about this type of nylon that makes it special?
Blue nylon is known most often as Nylatron® MC901. Nylatron® is a registered trade name of Quadrant EPP and was originally developed and manufactured as Polypenco. In fact, the Japanese division of Quadrant is still known as Quadrant Polypenco Japan Ltd. The Nylatron® product line actually comes in a variety of materials designed to excel in specific applications.
What sets it apart from nylon 6?
This family of nylon plastics is typically filled with molybdenum disulfide lubricant powder. Molybdenum disulfide is the inorganic compound with the formula MoS2.
This is the black crystalline sulfide of molybdenum that occurs as the mineral molybdenite. Molybdenite, in turn, is the principal ore from which molybdenum metal is extracted. MoS2 is relatively unreactive, being unaffected by dilute acids and oxygen. It is similar to graphite in its appearance and feel. Indeed, molybdenum disulfide, like graphite, is widely used as a solid lubricant because of its low friction properties and robustness.
When added to plastics, molybdenum disulfide forms a composite with improved strength as well as reduced friction. A number of polymers have been filled with MoS2 include nylon – known as Nylatron®, Teflon®, and Vespel®. Probably the most distinctive variety of Nylatron® is MC 901.
This modified cast nylon 6 grade with its distinctive blue colour is known for its high toughness, flexibility and fatigue resistance. It is an excellent material for gear wheels, racks and pinions. It is also used to cast plastic parts for machines, because of its mechanical properties and wear-resistance.
Some of the Key Benefits of Nylatron MC901:
- High mechanical strength
- Good fatigue resistance
- High mechanical damping ability
- Good sliding properties
- Excellent wear resistance
Okay – so what is blue nylon best used for?
Nylatron® is used for a wide range of industrial components both as OEM parts and for maintenance. Some examples of typical applications include sleeve and slide bearings, wear pads, support and guide wheels, conveyor rollers, tension rollers, sleeves for wheels and rollers, pulleys and pulley linings, cams, buffer block, hammer heads, scrapers, gear wheels, sprockets, seal-rings, feed screws, star wheels, cutting and chopping boards, insulators, etc. And if that were not enough, Nylatron® is also used in rotary lever actuators where unusual shapes are required.
One of the specific applications where Nylatron® stands out is heavy-duty caster wheels. These are normally as a replacement for cast iron or forged steel. In fact, it has replaced bronze, brass, steel, and aluminum in various mechanical applications. If you purchase blue nylon you will find that it is typically heat stabilized, and every stock shape is post annealed for less stresses during machining. Nylatron® is available in rods, plates, and tubes in addition to special custom cast shapes.
And there you have it!
If you are looking for a nylon that exhibits high mechanical strength, good fatigue resistance, high mechanical damping ability, good sliding properties, and excellent wear resistance then the distinctive blue nylon might just be the ticket.