Lumber processing requires high-quality materials to maintain operational efficiency. Wear and impact resistance are crucial for conveying and transportation systems, from logging sites to lumber mills. Performance plastics materials bring major advantages metal and rubber may lack.
Using performance plastics in conveyors, liners, chutes, and hoppers to meet these harsh operating needs can reduce the damage and wear. With low coefficient of friction properties, mechanical components can move more freely while withstanding impact forces.
Polymershapes partners with leading manufacturers such as Mitsubishi Chemical Group to offer specialty materials, designed specifically for forestry needs. As the lumber processing industry continues to evolve, performance plastics will continue providing the most in-demand qualities with long-lasting endurance. Polymershapes' inventory includes the most in-demand forestry and lumber plastics, including acetal, UHMW, polyurethane, and more. For more information, reach out one of our plastics distribution centers near you.
Common Qualities of Logging and Forestry Plastics
To promote safety and endurance, plastics for logging equipment need to be capable of withstanding certain conditions. Certain plastics are known for replacing metal to provide longer lasting, more efficient mechanical components. Professional logging equipment generally require materials that feature:
- Low coefficient of friction
- Requires less power to operate
- Handles pressure and friction well
- Impact and abrasion resistant
- Minimizes product damage
- Shock absorbing
- Extends equipment life
- Corrosion resistance to corrosion, rotting, rusting
- Protects hoses, wires and cables from rubbing, crushing and kinking
- Cost efficient
Plastics for Forestry and Lumber Include:
Acetal (Polyoxymethylene, POM)
Heavy machinery is engineered with parts and components designed to perform under harsh conditions. Metals and rubbers are very common inside of machinery, but they are known for succumbing to wear and tear as time goes on. Plastic parts made out of acetal can outlast metal or rubber in many applications. Its dimensional stability, toughness, low friction, and moisture/chemical resistance make it the ideal alternative material to metal and rubber.
Acetal is commonly used as bushings/bearings, gears, sprockets, slider plates, tool handles/grips, pulley wheels/rollers, and more.
LEXAN™ Polycarbonate (PC)
Many applications require material that can provide reliable protection without obscuring the operator's vision. Heavy equipment is designed with safety features to protect the operator, and among the most important are the windows and windshields.
LEXAN™ polycarbonate glazing is known for providing up to 200x the strength of standard glass at nearly half the weight. If you're looking to increase operator safety and visibility while preserving efficiency, polycarbonate is a popular solution. LEXAN is commonly used for equipment windshields and windows, outrigger pads, gauge lenses, and more. For more information, visit our Heavy Equipment page.
Polyurethane is a heavy-duty plastic that features high durability with high flexibility. Polyurethane can be bent and warped without losing its strength. There are two main types of polyurethane finishes: water-based polyurethane, and oil-based polyurethane, and each has its own qualities that make them suitable for different applications.
Common polyurethane applications include bumpers, guards, protective barriers, wear pads, liners, gaskets, seals, soundproofing material, and more.
Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW-PE)
UHMW is one of the most widely used plastics for logging and forestry. Its tensile strength, durability, and impact resistance make it a reliable material for strenuous applications. UHMW can handle repeated use and exposure to high temperatures, constant slamming, and more. Also, its low coefficient of friction helps reduce wear and maximize energy use in conveyor systems.
UHMW is commonly used as skid plates/wear strips, chain/cable guides, chute liners/hoppers, felling wedges, slider beds, belt scrapers, and more.
TIVAR® PolySteel UHMW is a special formulation developed by Mitsubishi Chemical Group to create a magnetically detectable polymer material. Wood pulp applications often utilize metal-detectable materials to remove impurities from pulp solutions. MCG's TIVAR® PolySteel all of the same benefits as standard UHMW, with improved metal-detectable features that reduce plastic contamination in paper mill operations.
Applications for Forestry and Lumber Plastics
- Saw tables
- Hose wrap/saddles
- Bushing & bearings
- Seals and gaskets
- Chain guides
- Safety windows
- Flange caps
- Wear rails
- Saw guides
- Sawmill Infeed
- Bin Sorters