Silicone connectors are molded rubber parts that connect the intake tubes and pipes in diesel-powered equipment and vehicles. These engine parts resist high temperatures while providing flexibility and strength. Normally, silicone connectors are used in mobile equipment such as ships and boats, generator sets (gensets), and on-road and off-road equipment for construction, mining, forestry and agriculture.
Materials of Construction
Silicone rubber offers reliable sealing and insulation, but engineers need to choose molded rubber components with caution. To match application-specific requirements, a silicone connector may require wire, fabric or liner materials.
- Fabric reinforcements usually use aramid or polyester in a four-ply construction for extra strength and high-temperature resistance
- Metal wire reinforcements help to protect silicone connectors from very high pressures, including vacuum pressures that can cause silicone couplers to fail
- Liner materials impart specialized properties. For instance, a fluorocarbon liner can improve a silicone connector’s resistance to residues from petrochemicals.
Silicone rubber is recognized for its high-temperature resistance, but engineers have to outline their application’s specific temperature range. Besides heat tolerance, it is vital to specify both the working pressure and the burst pressure. Usually, the burst pressure is four times the working pressure – the suggested maximum pressure for an application.
Industry Standards and Approvals
In certain mobile equipment applications, engineers need silicone connectors that meet specific standards or industry demands. Examples include SAE J20 R1 or SAE J20 R1 H.T. Class A from SAE International. Other standards include MIL-SPEC A-A-52426 and TMC RP303B Grade I and Grade II. Several heavy-duty OEM requirements may also apply.
Types of Silicone Connectors
Choosing the accurate silicone connector means choosing the appropriate type of product. Categories include silicone reducers, silicone elbows, hump hoses, straight hoses and wrapped hoses.
- Silicone reducers or silicone reducer hoses provide for a transition between different tube or pipe sizes. Accordingly, one end of the silicone coupler is bigger than the other. Dimensional specifications include hose outside diameter, hose inside diameter, and length
- Silicone elbows contain a molded bend (the elbow) and provide outstanding flexibility. Usually, the angle of the bend is either 45° or 90°. Dimensional specifications include wall thickness, inner radius, inner diameter, and the lengths of legs 1 and 2.
- Hump hoses support minor intake adjustments and bends. They can also compensate for slight misalignments between metal tubes or pipes. Applications include throttle body assemblies, air metering, and inlets and outlets.
- Straight silicone hoses are offered in various lengths and can be cut-to-size by customer’s personnel (usually with a razor) or via custom fabrication. Silicone hoses support the use of metal clamps and may contain fabric reinforcements.
- Wrapped hoses offer improved pressure resistance. They are wrapped with polyester fabric, mesh, or an extra layer of silicone.
Silicone Connectors from Elasto Proxy
Elasto Proxy can deliver the silicone connectors that user’s need and release quantities on demand or based on sales forecasts. They have warehouses close to Montreal and Toronto, Canada, and have a U.S. warehouse in Simpsonville, South Carolina. These facilities are all located near key highway corridors and support rapid, efficient shipping.
To offer extra value, Elasto Proxy can cut silicone connectors with water jet cutting. This saves time in the field or on the assembly line while decreasing material waste from low-quality cuts. Elasto Proxy’s capabilities also include kitting, parts marking and custom packaging. Therefore, the mobile equipment industry seeks out Elasto Proxy for door and window seals, cab and engine insulation, and heat blankets.