Protective Tubes

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Heat-shrink tubing

Indispensable in the field of electronics

There is virtually no other consumable that is as multifaceted as heat shrinking tubes. This is because of the countless variations of heat shrinking tubes that are available.




The 80 : 20 rule

For all heat shrinking tubes it is recommended to follow the 80:20 rule. Heat shrink tubing should shrink by at least 20% and not more than 80% of the supplied diameter to achieve the optimal result.

Example: 6/2 heat-shrink tubing

Maximum physical shrinkage: 4 mm (from 6 mm to 2 mm)
Minimum shrinkage: 20% of 4 mm (0.8 mm) = 5.2 mm
Maximum shrinkage: 80% of 4 mm (3.2 mm) = 2.8 mm
Size 6/2 has an application range of 2.8 mm to 5.2 mm.

Which shrinkage ratio is suitable for which purpose?

2:1 and 3:1 heat-shrink tubing

The largest item group, within the heat shrinking tube family, is the 2:1 shrinkage ratio. They are easy to use and are dependable. The 3:1 ratio allows a greater application scope though, which then reduces storage and supply chain costs.

Cable diameter: 0.7mm 1.3mm 1.4mm 2.6mm 2.8mm 5.2mm 5.6mm 8.4mm 10.4mm 11.2mm 15.6mm 18.4mm 20.8mm 34.6mm
3:1 type: 1.5/0.5   6/2   18/6 40/13
  3/1   12/4 24/8  

4:1 and 6:1 heat-shrink tubing

If you have very different cross-section dimensions, then the 4:1 and/or 6:1 are the best shrinkage ratio's to use. As an example; The crossover between a connector and a very thin cable.

Selection criteria

• Thin-wall, medium-wall and thick-wall tubing: When selecting your heat-shrink tubing, the thickness of the walls is one factor that you need to consider. The thicker the wall, the more resistant the heat-shrink tubing is to mechanical and electrical influences, but it is then less flexible.

• Adhesive on the inside: Heat-shrink tubing and moulded shapes with internal adhesive coating are used when waterproofing and/or strain relief is required. Using these tubes you also achieve a high mechanical stabability for connectors and sleeves.

• Shrinkage temperature: For heat sensitive processing conditions it is possible to obtain heat shrinking tubing that begins to shrink at an operating temperature of 90 °C. Normally heat shrinking tubes begin to shrink at temperatures of at least 120 °C.

Printing information onto heat-shrink tubing

With suitable heat shrinking tubing, the THERMOMARK ROLL, item no. 155-83-077, is the best solution for stationary use. Examples of suitable heat shrinking tubing are HFT-A or TF 21, with heat shrinkable markers (/c/cat-167400) RPS from Hellermann Tyton.

The best sollution for portable use is the Dymo RHINO industrial labeller (item no. 125-30-040). Suitable heat shrinking tubing (/c/cat-218741). You can thus create durable and tidy cable labelling in a single process.

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