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Views: 67     Author: XS-sgop     Publish Time: 2019-05-08      Origin: Site

Rubber bands are one of the most convenient products of the 20th century, used by numerous individuals and industries for a wide variety of purposes. The largest consumer of rubber bands in the world is the U.S. Post Office, which orders millions of pounds a year to use in sorting and delivering piles of mail. Here is a brief introduction of the history of rubber band.

Ancient Rubber

Rubber, which derives from plants that grow best in an equatorial climate, was first discovered by European explorers in the Americas, where Christopher Columbus encountered Mayan Indians using water-proof shoes and bottles made from the substance. 

The ancient Mayan People used latex to make rubber balls, hollow human figures, and as bindings used to secure axe heads to there handles and other functions. The Mayans learned to mix the rubber sap with the juice from morning glory vines so that it became more durable and elastic, and didn't get quite as brittle. Native peoples in the region still make rubber in the same way.

Modern Rubber

Today about three quarters of the rubber in production is a synthetic product made from crude oil. World War II cut the United States off from rubber supplies worldwide, and they stepped up production of synthetic rubber for use in the war effort. There are about 20 grades of synthetic rubber and the intended end use determines selection. The latex is coagulated from the liquid and results in rubber "crumbs" that are purchased by manufacturers and melted into numerous products. There is only one kind of natural rubber. 

rubber band ball

The Making of Rubber Bands

Rubber bands are tiny little elastic rings used for tying things. Its elasticity is what makes it such a useful article. Now, let's have a look at how the rubber bands are actually made:

1. The first thing is the formulation of rubber. Latex is mixed with other additives to evolve a specific quality holding compound. The compounds vary as per the requirements for a particular set of rubber bands. 

2. Next, the tubular form of rubber is processed through a machine called “extruder”. The process is quite similar to the manufacturing of manicotti noodles or hollow pastas.

3. A mandrel or a circular pipe is fitted into a length of the extruded tubing after which it is heated in a pressurized steam autoclave. This heating process better known as “vulcanization”, results into the circular shape and elasticity of rubber. Technically, vulcanization causes a complex chemical change in rubber making it elastic.

4. Once the rubber is vulcanized, the rubber tube coatings are removed from the mandrel and chopped into rings using a rapid speed cutter. These rings can now be called rubber bands.

5. Lastly, the rubber bands are thoroughly rinsed and treated with water to get rid of the chemicals used throughout the process. Later, after a quality inspection, these rubber bands are packed into boxes for sale.

Whilst we have man-made or synthetic rubber produced from petroleum, around one-quarter of the world's rubber comes from a natural source. Natural rubber band is a vital agricultural product or commodity which is used in the manufacture of a wide range of products. Rubber plays a major role in the socioeconomic fabric of many developing countries.


Nowadays, the eco-friendly rubber band balls have emerged, which have various applications ranging from a small toy ball to large industrial fields,such as check or ball valves, bearings, and so on. 



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