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Materials Used to Manufacture Composite Tubing Tubing is one of the most popular items on the Rock West Composites product list. We sell tubing to airplane manufacturers, industrial operations, garage tinkerers and everyone in between. What you may not know is that we offer an extensive inventory of tubing products made with a wide variety of materials.

This post will familiarize you with some of the materials used to make the tubing we sell. Knowing more about these materials will make it easier for you to decide which tube is right for your purposes. As always, do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about our products or the materials used to make them. Carbon Fiber Carbon fiber is the one composite material everyone seems to want. Carbon fiber fabric and tow is made of carbon atoms aligned in parallel to create a 'thread'. The threads are then bundled together to form tow, which can be used asis or transformed into fabric through a weaving technique. As a material for tubing, carbon fiber offers the highest strength-to-weight ratio along with the best rigidity. Additionally, multiple grades of carbon fiber are available depending on your performance and price requirements. This makes carbon fiber a good option for tubing that needs to fulfill a variety of roles. Fiberglass Long before carbon fiber took center stage in the world of composites, fiberglass was being used to manufacture everything from tubing to insulation. For our purposes we will consider fiberglass as a composite that utilizes glass fibers as reinforcement. The glass fibers are aligned and spread flat or woven into a fabric before being combined with resin to create a composite. Fiberglass is sometimes chosen over carbon fiber because it is less expensive and more flexible. In fact, fiberglass can be molded into shapes that are not practical for other composites. Although it doesn't offer the same strength-to-weight ratio as carbon fiber, fiberglass still offers a higher ratio than metals like aluminum and steel. Flax Fiber Flax fiber composites are products made from flax linen fabric combined with an epoxy resin. Flax itself is a natural material that comes from plants in the Linaceae family; plants like linseed, plains flax, golden flax, and blue flax. It makes a great material for tubing because of its strength, flexibility, relatively low weight, and its excellent ability to damp vibrations. Flax fiber is also compatible with most carbon fiber materials.

Aramids (Kevlar) Aramids are synthetic fibers created through a reaction between a carboxylic acid and an amine. This reaction creates a dissolved polymer, which is then spun to create fibers that are turned into tow or woven fabric. The most well-known aramid is a product known as Kevlar. We use it to fabricate tubing, and it can often be seen combined with carbon fiber to get the best of both products. Kevlar is a DuPont product that was first produced in the mid-1960s and made commercially available in the early 1970s. It has since become a preferred material for things like body armor and racing tires. We like it as a material for tubing because it is incredibly tough without being overly difficult to work with. Just like the other composite materials on this list, Kevlar is both lightweight and strong. So now that you know some of the materials used to create composite tubing, we hope you can make a more informed purchase decision. Rock West Composites takes pride in offering a wide range of material options, whether it’s ultra-high modulus carbon fiber or a carbon/Kevlar blend. If you still have questions, we are always here to help you make the right choice in tubing materials.

Materials Used to Manufacture Composite Tubing  
Materials Used to Manufacture Composite Tubing - Tubing is one of the most popular items on the Rock West Composites product list. We sell...