SureWeld 20 now doing even more for ballistic vest manufacturers
Leading ballistic vest manufacturers rely on Sonobond Ultrasonics' equipment to help them comply with the tough standards set by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ). These standards mandate that body armor must be totally waterproof. (See NIJ- 0101.06.) Sonobond's SeamMaster High Profile Ultrasonic Bonder is regularly used for sealing the outer shell that protects the ballistic-resistant material inside the vests. The unit's rotary system seals, sews, and trims the nylon fabric in one quick, reliable step that uses no thread or other consumables.
Now manufacturers can rely on another Sonobond unit, the SureWeld 20 Ultrasonic PlungeBonder with custom tooling, to ultrasonically bond straps within the seam of the vest's outer shell. This is a separate operation that does not compromise the integrity of the ultrasonically sealed outer shell. As a result, manufacturers are able to continue producing ballistic vests that comply with current NIJ submersion requirements.
Ultrasonic Bonding Procedure Sonobond bonders and welders use ultrasonic energy to reliably seam and seal synthetic materials in just one pass. This is accomplished without stitching, heat-sealing, or adhesives.
In the case of the SureWeld 20 Ultrasonic PlungeBonder, the outer shell material and the strap are placed between the unit's customized horn and anvil. The anvil is surrounded by a Plexiglass plate that supports the materials. High frequency vibrations are then channeled to the materials to create a localized buildup of heat. This seals the materials without heating the surrounding area. The ultrasonic bonding process is fast, energy-efficient, environmentally-friendly, and produces high-quality results.
In commenting on this added capability, Melissa Alleman, Sonobond's vice president, said, “The new tooling for the SureWeld 20 is yet another example of our support for an industry that delivers important protection to police officers and military personnel. We are very pleased that this machine can now be customized to bond straps to the front and the back sections of a ballistic vest's outer shell. Velcro can then be attached to the straps and used to connect both sides of the vest.”
The SureWeld 20 Ultrasonic PlungeBonder with customized tooling can comfortably attach straps to five vests per minute.
Versatile Machines Both the SeamMaster High Profile Ultrasonic Bonder and the SureWeld 20 Ultrasonic PlungeBonder are easy to operate with only minimal training.
Sonobond's SeamMaster High Profile Ultrasonic Bonder—the unit used to seal the outer shell of body armor—is a versatile, general-purpose machine that features a large pattern wheel and a higher clearance. This makes it ideal for handling bulky materials, as well as for hand-guided operations. The unit virtually eliminates fraying or unraveling of bonded edges and seams. Also available as a modular unit, the SeamMaster High Profile Ultrasonic Bonder can be easily integrated into production lines. It is four times faster than conventional sewing machines and ten times faster than adhesive methods.