Die Cut Foam
Die cut foam products are shapes cut out of foam sheets by a die cutter. Die cutters are stamping or rolling tools that cut specially designed shapes out of flat sheets. Die cutters can also be used to cut shapes out of metal, plastic, wood, rubber and other materials. Die cut foam is used to make several different products.
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Die Cutting Process
All die cut foam products are made in die cut machines. Every die cut machine can be specially configured to create a specific shape. During the process of die cutting, thin blades, called dies, are used to cut out shapes in various types of materials. Different types of die cutting include flat and rotary laser die cutting, blade type rotary die cutting, ultrasonic die cutting, and steel rule die cutting. Die cut foam can be produced by any of these types of die cutting. A foam is technically any material in which gas bubbles are suspended. In the context of die cut foam products, foamed synthetic polymers are the most common raw materials. Neoprene, polystyrene, polyethylene, PVC and polyurethane are just a few examples of common raw materials that are turned into die cut foam products. Each raw material offers different qualities of softness, strength, durability, shelf life and resistance to high or low temperatures. Carefully selecting the right die cut foam material for its application is important for every professional considering the use of die cut foam products.
Applications of Die Cut Foam
Die cut foam offers shock and vibration absorption when used in packaging, inserts, insulation, and cushioning. Gaskets, seals, cushion pads, insulators, vibration mounts, sound dampening products and a wide variety of other products can involve die cut foam in some way. Die cut foam is especially popular as a permanent packaging and cushioning material. Many expensive, portable electronics or other sensitive equipment that is stored in casings while not in use or for travel are secured in their cases by specially-shaped, die cut foam products. Camera lenses, for example, can be protected by carefully formed, die cut cushions that are long lasting and impact-absorbent. Die cut foam is also popular as an acoustically absorbent material for use in recording studios and radio stations. Also, novelty products like sports team promotional materials are often made of die cut foam.