Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene
Known for its outstanding abrasion resistance and high impact resistance, Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW-PE) has countless applications across nearly every industry worldwide, and is used to make everything from mining chute liners and farm equipment skid shoes to snowmobile skis and kitchen cutting boards.
UHMW-PE is a linear polyethylene with an extremely high molecular weight, making it far superior to any other thermoplastic for wear resistance, and by far one of densest polymers available, outperforming even carbon steel for wear applications. No other material can match UHMW’s slickness and abrasion resistance.
UHMW-PE is incredibly impact resistant. Professional sno-cross racers have been pounding moguls on UHMW snowmobile skis for nearly 30 years.
UHMW poly is extremely resistant to abrasion, and holds up better than steel, hardwoods and other polymers in abrasive applications. It’s been used in gritty bulk material handling and agricultural applications for decades.
Self-Lubricating – Low Friction
UHMW poly is a very slick, self-lubricating non-stick material with a coefficient of friction (dynamic) of 0.12. This allows materials to slide right over it without building up, making UHMW-PE an excellent choice for any application that requires a slippery surface to prevent caking. Oil and grease can be eliminated from bearing applications, making UHMW components a popular choice for commercial food handling and bottling applications.
Absorbs Virtually No Water and Withstands Many Corrosive Chemicals – These characteristics make UHMW poly an excellent choice for the food, beverage, pharmaceutical and chemical industries as well as for water treatment applications.
Non-Toxic and Safe
Natural virgin UHMW-PE is USDA and FDA approved for direct food contact.
Withstands Extreme Cold
UHMW-PE is an excellent choice for cold-weather applications. Snowmobilers prefer UHMW snowmobile skis for their durability and slick surface, and cities and contractors often install a UHMW poly cutting edge to snowplows and skid steer buckets to protect paved surfaces.
Withstands High Temperatures
UHMW-PE has a melting point of 320°F (160°C).
UHMW-PE is eight times lighter than steel but outwears carbon steel for abrasion resistance by 10 to 1.
Reduces Noise and Vibration
UHMW is an excellent sound and vibration dampener. It reduces rattling in material handling applications. Farmers often line combine feeder houses and other equipment with poly to reduce clattering.
UHMW will save you time and money on maintenance. UHMW-PE reduces corrosion and wear so parts last longer. It also is self-lubricating, eliminating time-consuming lubrication requirements. Slick UHMW-lined chutes are far easier to keep clean than metal.
Reduces Energy Consumption
UHMW’s slick property helps reduce energy costs by reducing friction and thermal loss. Conveyor belts operate more efficiently because product moves more freely, and farm equipment outfitted with poly passes through fields with less resistance, reducing fuel costs.
Prolongs Equipment Life and Reduces Maintenance Costs
UHMW poly can be used to protect expensive equipment from wear and tear, and to replace worn metal parts for a fraction of the cost.
Industrial Applications for UHMW-PE
The industrial applications for UHMW-PE are endless and limited only by your imagination. UHMW can be custom machined, molded, cut, formed and fabricated into a massive variety of parts. At Pride Engineered Plastics, our knowledgeable UHMW experts can help you take your custom plastic parts from concept to completion at very competitive prices. You’ll benefit from our 45+ years of UHMW poly experience.
UHMW’s slick and durable properties improve the performance and efficiency and extend the life of conveying systems. UHMW also is self-lubricating and is an excellent sound and vibration dampener. It is commonly used for a wide range of conveyor components including sprockets, chain guides, wear plates, rollers and more.
UHMW-PE parts are commonly used for maintenance, repair and overhaul operations, including wear pads, sheaves, pulleys, gears and machine guards.
UHMW-PE is used across a wide range of transportation industries, including railroad, ocean freight hauling, aerospace, and trucking. Applications include tank and rail car liners, ship rudder bearings, skid plates, fifth wheel plates, coupler wear plates, bolster bowl wear liners, drawbar savers and much more. Its slick and durable properties speed up the loading and unloading of bulk material and protect expensive equipment.
Food Handling and Processing
Natural virgin UHMW-PE is USDA and FDA approved for direct food contact. Its self-lubricating property eliminates the need for grease and oil lubrication. UHMW is non-porous and can be cleaned with water and steam as well as disinfectants and detergents.
Wastewater and Solid Waste Treatment
UHMW-PE is often used in wastewater treatment facilities, particularly for sedimentation and clarifier tank components. It also is used in the solid waste handling industry to extend the service life of equipment, dampen sound and move waste more efficiently. It does not absorb water and is resistant to most chemicals.
Heavy duty UHMW plastic is used in a wide range of recreational products, including snowmobile skis, bogey wheels, idler arms, drive sprockets, rollers, skateboard wheels, playground equipment, sail tracks, boat hulls, ATV skid plates, marine dock fenders, golf ball cores, snowboards, and even fishing line.
UHMW-PE is commonly used in the mining industry due its impact and wear resistance, ability to facilitate efficient flow of materials by preventing bridging, sticking, holdup, friction and heat, as well as its ability to dampen noise and vibration. Common mining applications for UHMW poly include chute, hopper and bin liners, belt scrapers, chain guides, machinery protection, and much more.
UHMW-PE is commonly used in the production, shipping and storage of coal. Its slippery surface prevents wet coal from sticking, making handling much more efficient. UHMW-PE increases productivity, and lowers labor, energy and maintenance costs at every step of the way in coal production, from mining operations to railcar delivery.
Aggregate (Sand and Gravel)
Slippery and durable UHMW-PE is an excellent choice for aggregate operations. Even wet sand that would stick to metal flows easily on UHME-PE. Common aggregate applications for UHMW-PE include bucket conveyors, conveyor belt rollers, chain guides and sprockets, wear plates, idler rollers, pulleys, shaker screen guides and bars, and much more.
UHMW-PE is commonly used in sawmills to protect conveying systems and for noise abatement.
Oil and Gas
This high performance engineered plastic is well suited for oil and gas exploration applications that require low friction and ability to resist abrasion. UHMW-PE parts stand up to harsh weather and extremely cold temperatures. Oil and gas industry parts made from UHMW include outrigger pads, hold down bars, valves, seals and much more.
UHMW-PE is resistant to many chemicals, including alkalis and acids, degreasers and organic solvents, making it well-suited for chemical applications.
Cities and contractors often place a UHMW poly cutting edge on snowplows, bulldozers and skid steer buckets to protect pavement and extend the life of road surfaces. Additional applications include dump truck bed liners, belly pads, wear pads on excavator tracks and much more.
Lawn and Turf
Lawnmower striping rollers are over-molded with UHMW-PE for its durability.
Thousands of items are made from UHMW-PE. Here’s just a few:
Auger wear shoes
Bride pier protection
Bucket elevator guides
Chain drive sprockets
Lead acid battery separators
Poly capped bolts
And much more
Commercial lawnmower striping rollers
Conveyor rollers, guide rails, chain guides
Cutting Edges for Skid Steer Buckets and snow plows
Fuel tank protectors
Hold down bars