What is the Best Anti-Vibration Material?
Considering physically demanding jobs like construction and other industrial jobs all contain hazards, the vibrations from power tools and machinery seem small in comparison. That being said, experiencing constant and prolonged vibrations can have serious health effects in the long run, and that’s why anti-vibration safety gloves are an important piece of personal protective equipment. But what makes these gloves so effective? What is the best anti-vibration material for them to be made of? Let’s explore.
Why Vibration Protection is Necessary
To give you a better understanding of why vibrations can be a source of injury and why it is important to seek out the best materials to counter them, let’s examine the effects and damage they can cause. Recall any time you may have used a power tool or kept your hand pressed to something vibrating for an extended period of time. While a few seconds may not do anything, an extended period may make your hand feel numb. While sensation eventually returns, consistent and extended exposure to such vibrations can cause permanent danger such as hand-arm vibration syndrome. This is because the constant vibrations damage your nervous system by changing the tendons, muscle tissues, and blood vessels within your hands. This is most commonly identified by the fingers being pale from a lack of blood and the sufferer experiencing a loss of feeling and functionality in their hands. This impairment of grip and control will not only make working in industrial capacities more dangerous but it’s often paired with a lifetime of discomfort or pain. The damaged nerves will experience effects like pain and cold sensations or random bouts of tingling and numbness.
Rubber as the Best Material
When you’re considering what the best anti-vibration material is, rubber has widely been considered the ultimate in terms of absorbing vibrations. That being said, the type of rubber used for the best protection depends on the circumstances of the job.
Rubber compounds are grouped into two categories: natural and synthetic. Natural rubber is made from latex which originates from plants such as the Euphorbiaceous family, which is renowned for producing the most amount of latex sap. Synthetic rubber is made artificially from chemical plants and laboratories made from petroleum byproducts. The major difference between the two types of rubber is that they contain different polymers and compound structures that play a role in dictating their properties.
Both types of rubber feature high tensile strength, tear resistance, and low temperature flexibility. Notably, natural rubber has greater tensile strength and tear resistance compared to synthetic rubber. Furthermore, natural rubber also has the simple benefit of being far less odorous than synthetic rubber. The synthetic rubber, however, can feature special characteristics like chemical, fluid, ozone, and electrical resistances. Regardless of these secondary characteristics, both types of rubber are effective for absorbing vibrations. More physically intensive industries may prefer natural rubber because of its greater tensile strength and tear resistance for gloves with a greater lifespan.
Other Materials Used
While rubber gloves are functional and protective gloves, they are not the most comfortable type of glove—or the most usable, either. Luckily, other materials are available—either as standalone gloves or to complement the use of rubber. An example is silicone, which is a rubber-like substitute. Silicone is another man-made material that is inert and has notable heat resistance and low toxicity. Combined with these factors and its similarity to rubber, silicone has become widely used in a multitude of applications like cookware, adhesives, and gloves. Because of rubber that we have recognized the need and value of silicone as the effective substitute it is.
Rubber and silicone are best applied to safety gloves by being applied to the palm of the glove and on top of anti-vibration pads. This creates a rubber surface for the wearer’s palm to increase grip strength without hindering dexterity by being entirely made of silicone or rubber. This allows the rest of the gloves, such as the back, to be made with more comfortable and breathable materials like terry cloth. Terry cloth can absorb sweat and ensure the gloves don’t cause pain or discomfort after prolonged use.
Cestus Armored Gloves has included other features to further improve upon the design of anti-vibration gloves and to improve protection. While these materials are not nearly as effective by themselves, they are worth mentioning because of how effective they are when used to improve upon the base material. We employ a hexagonal memory gel to further improve the vibration absorption of our gloves. The gel is strategically applied to places that contact power tools and machinery without compromising comfort, fit, or dexterity.
Furthermore, elastics are considered within our designs to promote healthy hand positioning—both when you are at rest and operating a power tool. Hand fatigue is a major concern, even when you are protected from vibrations, and it can cause sloppy mistakes to occur that would be otherwise easily avoidable. We help to support your endurance with the aid of this elastic. We also ensure you are able to follow the best and safest practices for the entirety of your shift or the task at hand.
Our inventory has a variety of anti-vibration protective gloves. While rubber and its substitute silicone may be the best material for anti-vibration gloves, you must consider many things to determine what glove is the most effective for you. Think about your circumstances, the job at hand, and the tools you will be using when you are deciding which type of protective gloves to purchase. Never hesitate to contact us if you ever have any questions about a particular glove or need help finding the right type for yourself and your employees. Never wait until you feel the effects of long-term damages to your nervous system to get vibration protection. It is critical to your long-term health and safety.