What is Nylon Plastic – Nylon Plastic Properties, Types, Uses, Manufacturing & Nylon vs ABS vs PLA

2021.1.13

Why nylon is so popular in no matter daily use or industrial applications? Nylon is a synthetic material that has a long history and covers more and more modern uses with the help of improved manufacturing techniques. In this article, let’s take an overview of nylon plastic (PA), how is nylon made and what are nylon properties, as well as its use, types, and the difference between ABS, PLA.

What is Nylon Plastic?

Nylon usually refers to the family of plastic known as polyamides (PA), it is an engineering thermoplastic with excellent mechanical properties and widely used in CNC machining for various industries. Nylon polymers can be mixed with a wide range of additives to achieve different variations, including fibers, fabric, shapes, and films.

Types of Nylon

Common types of nylon material are Nylon 6, Nylon 6/6, Nylon 6/9, Nylon 6/10, etc. The first number of the nylon type refers to the number of carbon atoms in the diamine, the second number is the quantity in the acid. Single digits (nylon 6) indicate that the material is devised from a single monomer in combination with itself. Two digits (nylon 66) indicate that the material is devised from multiple monomers in combination with each other. The slash in nylon 6/6 indicates that the material is made up of different comonomer groups in conjunction with each other. 

How is Nylon Made?

Nylon is not a natural material like wood, nylon is made from organic chemicals. The nylon polymer is made by reacting together two fairly large molecules (hexane-1,6-dicarboxylic acid and 1,6-diaminohexane) using moderate heat and pressure in a reaction vessel called an autoclave. When these two molecules combine, they fuse together to make a larger molecule and give off the water in a chemical reaction. Nylon-6,6 is formed through this kind of process. Other nylons are made by reacting with different starting chemicals. Nylon sheets produced by this process can be shredded into chips and become the raw materials for different nylon plastic products, while nylon clothes and similar products are made from nylon fibers, which are made by melting nylon chips and drawing them through a spinneret to varying length and thickness. 

Nylon Plastic Properties

Most of the time, Nylon tends to be tough semi-crystalline materials with good thermal and chemical resistance. It can resist most chemicals except strong acids, alcohols, and alkalis, also wear-proof and resists sunlight, weathering, and natural nasties. Nylon is a strong and durable material. Even though nylon is waterproof, water molecules can’t easily penetrate its surface, it still will absorb moisture from the surrounding environment easily, which may affect its dimensional stability and strength, while the impact resistance and flexibility will be improved. Temperature, crystallinity and the thickness of nylon parts will have an impact on the moisture content. Nylon may be blended with other engineering plastics to improve certain properties. 

Nylon Plastic Uses

The diversity of nylon shapes and excellent properties make nylon a versatile material that can be found in a broad range of applications. Nylon products are widely used in daily use, machine parts, automotive accessories, sports supplies, clothing, etc. For example, the waterproof and fast-drying properties of nylon make it can be made into umbrellas and waterproof clothes. Nylon is often blended with natural textiles (such as cotton) to make clothes. Nylon films are perfect choices for food packaging. The high strength and toughness also enable nylon to become alternatives to metal materials, they are more lightweight and affordable at the same time, so we can find nylon car engine parts, the self-lubricating properties make it a great option for gears and bearings. Nylon is also made to electrical high load parts due to its electrical insulation, corrosion resistance and toughness, like switch housing. Nylon machining services at Junying serve your specific demands with high-standard raw material and processing requirements. 

Nylon vs ABS vs PLA

A simple and clear chart to compare Nylon, ABS, and PLA. The larger the number, the higher the characteristics.


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