The Secrets of Duct Tape

We always loved the fascinating look under the hood that Bill Hammack, the Engineer Guy gave us over the years, but we haven't heard from him in a long time. Bill is back! Once again, he takes a mundane subject and makes it way too interesting. Duct tape (or Duck™ tape) is something everyone has, and everyone uses, but what makes it work so well? Hammack dissolved the tape into its component parts: The plastic backing, the cloth reinforcement, and the adhesive. The adhesive is key, because it has so many qualities that make it useful. It sticks things together effectively, but it's not permanent. Most of the time, it can be removed without leaving residue. We get an explanation of exactly how the adhesive behaves to give us the tape we want, and how adhesives in other kinds of tape differ. But the silver backing and the fabric reinforcement have important roles, too. Yes, there are many kinds of tape that vary in their components, making them useful for various applications, but duct tape is useful for almost everything in the world -except ducts.  -via Geeks Are Sexy


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