3MTM Very High Bond (VHB) tapes are heavily bonding rolls of tape used in both consumer and industrial applications. VHB tapes were created by 3M in the 1980s and immediately showed promising characteristics, as seen by this wonderfully 80s promotional video:
VHB tapes can bond to surfaces both smooth and irregular. Ideal applications would include cleaning the surface, applying the tape, and holding pressure for a length of time. Materials include:
- Metals (including aluminum and steel)
- Glass and ceramics
- Wood, concrete, brick
- Plastics and plasticized vinyl
- Painted and powder-coated surfaces
The durability of 3M VHB tapes allows them to be used both indoors and outdoors in all kinds of different environments:
Temperature: Good performance and elasticity are maintained between -40°F and 200°F. Some have seen temperatures up to 300°F and (intermittently) 500°F.
UV light: Excellent resistance to natural and artificial ultraviolet rays.
Humidity: Holds the ability to perform in areas with constant high humidity.
Chemicals: Tapes held up to splash testing of common solvents, such as petrol, oil, ammonia, acetone, isopropyl alcohol, and more.
Moisture: Resists many solvents, freshwater and saltwater.
Although not recommended for continuous submersion in water, some tests showed no degradation after being submerged in saltwater for an entire decade!
The list of industries that use 3M VHB tapes is nearly endless. Almost anywhere a tight bond needs to be used in favor of bolts and rivets, VHB tapes are applicable. Engineers have even used 3M VHB tape in the Chicago O’Hare Airport and Walt Disney Concert Hall.
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