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The Elastomerics Blog by Stockwell Elastomerics

Thursday, May 14, 2015

What is Strip-N-Stick?

Many years ago the Connecticut Hard Rubber (CHR) developed Strip-N-Stick™, an expanded silicone sponge with a silicone based adhesive backing.  Through a web of acquisitions, CHR was acquired by Saint Gobain Performance Plastics who currently manufactures the Strip-N-Stick™ family of products.  Strip-N-Stick options have expanded over the years to include acrylic adhesive, reinforced silicone sponge, open cell silicone foam and solid silicone rubber.
Gasket Tape
Strip-N-Stick & Stockwell Gasket Tape

Strip-N-Stick is widely used for enclosure gaskets, large radome gaskets, cushioning strips and many other applications where a conformable gasket tape is needed.  Stockwell Elastomerics is a preferred St. Gobain distributer / converter, with master log inventory.  While common widths for Strip-N-Stick are 1” and 0.75”, Stockwell Elastomerics cuts all Strip-N-Stick and gasket tapes to width at the time of ordering.  This helps ensure good inventory turns and fresh adhesive.

Most popular Strip-N-Stick gasket materials:
 SNS-100S – Medium Closed Cell Silicone Sponge Tape, Silicone PSA
 SNS-200A – Medium Closed Cell Silicone Sponge Tape, Acrylic PSA
 SNS-300AR – Medium Closed Cell Silicone Sponge Tape, Reinforced

An interesting side note about the name Strip-N-Stick… it came from a contest where samples were sent to distributors who were asked to name the product.  Stockwell was one of the submitters but for better or worse, was not the winner but is one of the few remaining original suppliers.

For more information about custom silicone gaskets and cushioning pads fabricated from St. Gobain COHRlastic materials… transitioning to NORSEAL silicone materials, please contact Stockwell Elastomerics at 1-800-523-123 or email

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posted by Steve Hughes at 4:52 PM comments

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Best Gasket Manufacturer

Over the years Stockwell Elastomerics has received a lot a compliments, we recently had a customer tell us that Stockwell is the best gasket manufacturer… while it’s great to hear we’re appreciated, “the best” is certainly hard to quantify.  Stockwell Elastomerics has been in business for almost 100 years, and over the years competitors have come and gone.  There are many great gasket fabricators in the U.S. and around the world, the better manufacturers tend to have an area of expertise or strong core competence. Others try to be all things to all people, which more often ends up with under

served customers.  With so many elastomers, variants of elastomers and processing combinations, it’s extremely difficult to have an expertise in all these areas.  Stockwell Elastomerics has selected high-performance, engineered materials as their core competence, with a concentration on commercially available silicone rubber materials.  What does that mean?  Stockwell has partnered with the top material manufacturers like Rogers Corporation, St. Gobain Performance Plastics, Wacker Silicone, Momentive Silicones, Specialty Silicone Product, 3M, and Adchem to bring customers the best performing products available.  Moreover, Stockwell Elastomerics has committed to keeping inventory so they can respond quickly to customers’ urgent needs.  This rapid response model has been institutionalized within the company; it’s understood that the gasket is often the last component specified.  Stockwell works closely with their customers to understand the technical performance needed as well as their timeline… Stockwell Elastomerics is committed to meeting both.

For more information about Stocwell Elastomerics' products and services, please call 1-800-523-0123 or email

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posted by Steve Hughes at 5:34 PM comments

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Super Resilient Extreme Temperature Silicone Foam

Super Resilient Extreme Temperature Silicone Foam – Stockwell Elastomerics has it! Silicone foam, not to be confused with silicone sponge, is a platinum cured (addition cured) liquid silicone rubber that is expanded.  Silicone as an elastomer is very resilient, especially when compared to organic elastomers such as chloroprene. This is attributed to free volume in the molecular make up of silicones that allows the polymer to move more freely making the elastomer more flexible and resilient.  This free volume also gives silicones a lower glass transition than organic (carbon backbone) materials, meaning they can naturally perform at lower temperatures without plasticizer. In addition, the Si-O backbone is stronger and less susceptible to breakdown in high temperatures, UV and ozone environments.

Super Resilient Extreme Temperature Silicone Foam is a good description for Rogers Corporations’ HT-800 family of silicone foam products.  In addition to being super resilient and having excellent temperature properties, they are formulated in various firmnesses and carry a UL 94V-0 flame rating. HT-800, HT-820 and HT-840 are considered closed cell and are qualified by UL for enclosure gaskets, with UL50 and UL50E recognition.

Below is a list of performance properties for HT-800 silicones… it’s easy to see why these are usually the best gasket materials for indoor and outdoor enclosure gasket applications.
  • Super resilient (low compression set)
  • Extreme temperature range
  • UV & ozone resistant
  • UL 94V-0 flame rating
  • UL 50 and UL 50E gasket rating
  • Inherently fungus resistant
  • Closed cell foam for water sealing
  • Long life rubber
  • Available with or without adhesive from Stockwell Elastomerics
  • Competitively priced
Silicone foam sheet materials like HT-800 are widely used to seal and ruggedize electronic and electrical enclosures when regulatory compliance and long term performance is critical. Stockwell Elastomerics maintains inventory of the HT-800 silicone foam family of materials and applies high quality 3M adhesives as needed. Stockwell also waterjet cuts and die cuts custom gaskets from resilient silicone foam and silicone sponge sheet rubber. In addition, Stockwell Elastomerics manufactures slits rolls for gasket tape applications.

For more information about Super Resilient Extreme Temperature Silicone Foam, closed cell silicone sponge, and other high performance gasket materials, please call 1-800-523-0123 or email

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posted by Steve Hughes at 3:05 PM comments

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Rapid Gasket – Responding to the Urgent Need of Customers

Stockwell Elastomerics' Customer Service team received a call on a Tuesday afternoon at 3:30PM from a good customer who was in a bit of a panic… their engineering team realized they needed custom gaskets for their device that was shipping out the next day, without the gaskets they would miss their critical deadline.

Like a finely tuned machine, Stockwell's team was able to quickly, process the order, program their waterjets, pulled the materials, custom laminated adhesive, and cut the custom gaskets.  At the same time Quality Control put together the documentation needed for final inspection.  Within a couple hours, two production runs of fully inspected and certified custom gaskets were manufactured and taken to the FedEx depot for next day delivery. The customer was amazed and appreciative of how Stockwell Elastomerics was able to get them out of their jam and meet their deadline.
While manufacturing a set of custom gaskets within a few hours is not typical, Stockwell Elastomerics has institutionalized a Rapid Response model.  Manufacturing custom gaskets to ship within a few days is common and producing production volumes within 2 weeks is the general standard lead time.  Stockwell’s comprehensive inventory of high performance materials - silicone sponge, silicone foam, Poron urethane foam, rubber sheet rolls, and 3M adhesive backings, help ensure that Stockwell can respond quickly to customer’s needs.

If you have a need for quick turn gaskets and a custom gasket manufacturer who can respond to your critical need, please contact Stockwell Elastomerics at 1-800-523-0123 or email

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posted by Steve Hughes at 3:02 PM comments

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Remembering “Mr. S.” – Elbridge Stockwell Jr.

In 2003 I started working at Stockwell Rubber Company, 4th generation US manufacturer located in Northeast Philadelphia.  Part of my training was to sit with Elbridge Stockwell (3rd generation President) and pick his brain.  The reason was very apparent; Mr. S. as he was affectionately known throughout the company was a treasure chest of knowledge.  At a company where the pace is very fast, the time spent was a nice deviation… Mr. S. would patiently answer my questions and offer detailed explanations followed by pages of notes with even finer details.  When I worked with Mr. S. he was in his later years, I’m sure slower than he was in his younger years, but what was still clear and present was his passion for the industry, company and people.

Stockwell Rubber Company was a smaller organization in the 1970s and 1980s… I recently learned that Mr. S. mortgaged his home to purchase a larger facility to help grow the company.   It struck a cord with me; in business there is always risk, however very few people would be willing to put their skin in the game as Elbridge did… for this we thank you Mr. S, you literally set the foundation for us!

Signed Steve and the Stockwell Elastomerics family

posted by Steve Hughes at 1:07 PM comments

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Part 2: Custom EMI Gaskets - Particle Filled, Conductive Rubber

Environmental EMI Gaskets
EMI - Environmental Gaskets
This is part 2 (ref part 1) of a two part blog series about EMI / RFI gaskets offered by Stockwell Elastomerics.  Most EMI gaskets manufactured by Stockwell serve several functions; the first is to shield EMI emissions, the second is to protect a device from being interfered with by external emission (often referred to as susceptibility).  Lastly, Stockwell EMI gaskets also perform the dual function of environmental sealing, protecting electronics from water damage from splashing, washing or rain.

How is silicone rubber conductive?
The short answer is - it’s not. Silicone rubber, the polymer of choice for most conductive rubber products, is not inherently conductive however the raw compound can be densely mixed with very fine conductive particles. Since they are so densely mixed, the powder-like particles create an electrical path through the rubber. The silicone rubber still maintains its elastomeric properties allowing it to be compressed. There is some trade off with tensile strength due to the fill, but this is typically not a concern since EMI gaskets are used in a compressed state.

How are particle filled EMI gaskets made?
Stockwell Elastomerics manufactures conductive filled EMI gaskets by either compression molding the gasket directly or by cutting parts from pre-manufactured sheets.

  • Molding EMI gaskets – best selected for volumes justifying a mold investment.  Very often the payback is quick if there is material saving over die cut parts.  Molding EMI gaskets allows for 3D features such as sealing beads that can reduce the clamp pressure needed to make a seal.  In general, conductive adhesive backings are not available (with some exceptions).
  • Waterjet cut or die cut EMI gaskets – cutting pre-formed sheets or rolls of material allows Stockwell to quickly manufacture custom EMI gaskets.  EMI gasket sheets are readily available with or without 3M conductive PSA backings.  Waterjet cut EMI gaskets are often preferred for optimizing yield and responsive manufacturing.
EMI Gasket Materials
Stockwell Elastomerics offers several EMI gasket materials, most often the delineation is between commercial applications and military applications. Some military applications require material to meet MIL-DTL-83528, this specification concisely defines the base polymer (silicone or fluorosilicone) and the specific conductive fill, silver coated aluminum is the most common.

Commercial and military applications not requiring MIL-DTL-83528 often use nickel coated graphite particles as the conductive fill. Nickel graphite is significantly lower cost than silver/aluminum with very good shielding properties.

Below are Stockwell Elastomerics materials commonly specified for EMI application.

Custom EMI Gasket Manufacturer
Stockwell Elastomerics is a U.S.A. EMI gasket manufacturer supplying custom EMI gaskets globally to OEMs. With a core competence in silicone and a responsive manufacturing model; Stockwell Elastomerics offers many material and processing options to meet most EMI gasketing requirements.

For more information regarding the above products or other EMI gaskets offered by Stockwell Elastomerics, please call 1-800-523-0123 or email

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posted by Steve Hughes at 4:46 PM comments

Monday, January 12, 2015

Part 1: Custom EMI Gaskets – Combination EMI Gasket, Sponge & Wire Mesh

This is part 1 of a two part blog series about EMI / RFI gaskets offered by Stockwell Elastomerics and to help give a better understanding of options available to engineers tasked with EMI gasket design.

Most EMI gaskets manufactured by Stockwell Elastomerics serve several functions; the first is to shield EMI emissions, the second is to protect a device from being interfered with by external emission (often referred to as susceptibility).  Lastly, Stockwell EMI gaskets also serve as an environmental seal, protecting electronics from water damage from splashing, washing or rain.

What is an EMI Combination Gasket?
Combination EMI GasketsCombination EMI gaskets combine a traditional closed cell sponge gasket with a knitted wire mesh cord.  The gasket material most often specified is silicone sponge because of its long life, weather resistance, and functional temperature range.  The knitted wire mesh cord is most often made from Monel, a metal alloy that has very good corrosion resistance.  Additionally the wire mesh is bonded to the “dry” edge of the gasket, which means it’s protected from water and fluids, this greatly minimizes corrosion.

There are variations on these material options when specific properties are needed; as an example Stockwell Elastomerics offers fluorosilicone sponge that has better chemical/fuel resistance over un-fluorinated silicone.  Fluorosilicone is often specified for aerospace applications where fuel exposure is a concern.

Why use a Combination EMI gasket over a filled EMI gasket?
Combination EMI vs. filled EMI gasket is a common question – while they are both used to manage EMI their physical characteristics are very different.  Combination EMI gaskets are often thick (0.125” & 0.25”) as compared to a particle filled EMI gasket, they are also softer.  This thicker / softer combination allows for lower clamp force and wider tolerances between sealing faces.  This is advantageous for large EMI gaskets and enclosures made of sheet metal.  Combination EMI gaskets are often used for NEMA enclosures with added EMI attenuation.

Particle filled silicones and fluorosilicones are the most common “filled EMI” gasket materials.  These are very good for EMI attenuation and sealing water, capable of sealing to IP66 and IP67.  Filled materials tend to be harder and thinner; this requires a more rigorous bolt pattern and tighter tolerance sealing faces.

• Click for more about Combination EMI Gaskets
• Click for more about Filled EMI Gaskets

Stockwell EMI Gaskets
Stockwell Elastomerics manufactures both, combination and filled EMI / RFI gaskets, their Applications Engineers can assist in selecting which type is the best fit for your design.  Stockwell Elastomerics manufactures their EMI gaskets in the USA at their Philadelphia, PA location and ship globally to OEMs and contract manufacturers.

For more information regarding the above products or other EMI gaskets offered by Stockwell Elastomerics, please call 1-800-523-0123 or email

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posted by Steve Hughes at 1:05 PM comments