When it comes to product design, there’s no such thing as too many details. When it comes to gasket design, a complete set of details helps us come up with the best possible plan to hit your deadlines and stay on budget. When preparing your gasket consultation, use this checklist as a guide.
1. Do you have a CAD drawing?
This may seem like an elementary question to most customers. However, those who are new to gasket design may not be familiar with the details we require.
Converting your gasket design to a CAD provides us with the best representation of the gasket’s visuals and dimensions. This information lets us identify the material cutting method that best fits your requirements, including tolerance range, deadlines and budget, so we can give you a fast and accurate quote.
2. What is the gasket’s acceptable tolerance range?
Many customers don’t think to factor this in. But during the design and planning stage, you’ll want to account for the small variations in dimensions that occur in a material when it’s cut by a specific method. These variations (tolerances) are often imperceptible to the naked eye.
Most gaskets function flawlessly within the standard tolerance range. But if your gasket requires a tighter-than-standard tolerance to hold everything together, we’ll need to look at higher-precision cutting methods.
Providing this data early lets us choose the cutting method that’s best for your gasket.
3. What does your gasket do?
Successful gasket design considers the material’s ability to protect and hold in the conditions the product would be exposed to. In most cases, there would be a specific set of specifications to follow, which consider things like:
- Temperature: What temperature range would the material be exposed to?
- Location: Is this an indoor or outdoor application?
- Resistance to UV rays, chemicals and solvents: What would the material be exposed to, and how much and how often?
- Flame resistance: Would the material require a particular flame rating?
- Gasket function: What will the gasket be sealing or protecting?
The more we know about the project, the better we can assist you in the design and manufacturing processes.
4. Any quality requirements for your gasket’s project approval?
As we plan your project, it helps to know your firm’s review process after the order is filled. If you know of any out-of-the-ordinary parameters, indicating it upfront can save us both time and money. Some companies require specific quality samples and prototypes, backed with datasheets and inspection reports. (A common one is the First Article Inspection Report.) It’s equally common for companies to not require this level of review.
5. Does your project require a prototype?
This ties into the above quality review question. If you need a prototype, let us know of any requirements that will be a part of that review.
6. What is your lead time?
At SRP, we build custom gaskets to order. We keep materials in stock, but we don’t maintain a warehouse of finished products. We typically quote 4-6 weeks for orders, though we’re usually ready to ship them out in 3-4 weeks. If your project has a tight deadline, keep in mind that material availability and other factors can come into play.
7. What are your packaging requirements?
Packaging requirements can run the gamut in the gasket business. It’s an often-overlooked question that can affect the gasket delivery, especially if you’re looking for something unusual. Will you need a barcode for inventory management purposes? Will the gaskets need to be packaged in plastic zip-close bags, or would bulk packaging suffice?
8. Are you prioritizing gasket makers within the Preferred Converter network?
When you’re looking to use specific gasket materials and adhesives for your project, you may have noticed that SRP is a part of the Preferred Converter network with several material providers, including 3M. What does a preferred partnership mean to you? There are several benefits, which makes it an important feature to look for when you’re looking at gasket partners.
Being in the Preferred Converter network gives you access to the best materials in the industry. This is a point of pride for us because we know our customers can count on getting the highest quality materials at the highest standards. Not only that but being in the Preferred Converter network means we get the best available prices and lead times for the materials you need.
In short, the Preferred Converter label is a signal to you that a company can provide top-notch materials and service.
Learn more about our custom gasket and converter capabilities. Contact SRP and request a quote.