A Beginner's Guide to Using VELCRO® Brand Hook and Loop Tape
Hook and loop tape is one of life’s little shortcuts that we almost take for granted sometimes. But when you’re taking on your most important projects, whether personal or professional, you always want to work with the right materials for the job. To be sure that you’re getting the very best, FASTENation recommends the incomparable versatility, strength, and durability of VELCRO® Brand Hook and Loop Tape. It’s the original and the best—and, what’s more, it comes with the biggest variety of options. FASTENation offers a huge variety of VELCRO® Brand Hook and Loop fasteners. In this article, we’ll do a brief run-down of some of our most popular options. Thanks to VELCRO® Brand’s many different materials and designs, there’s a hook and loop product for almost every application!
Hook and Loop Terminology
To get started, let’s go over a few quick basics of VELCRO® Brand technology. These will help you decide which type of hook and loop tape is best for you:
- Hook and Loop: The basic fastener system behind VELCRO®. It consists of two strips of material, one containing tiny hooks and the other, tiny loops. They’re manufactured in such a way that when placed face-to-face, they form a strong bond.
- Closure Strength: One of the aspects that determines which applications a given type of hook and loop material is good for. Closure strength includes:
- Peel: How easily the material disengages when separated 180º, like unzipping a jacket—in other words, when each row of hooks is disengaged in succession.
- Shear: The bonds’ strength when the pieces are moved laterally in opposite directions.
- Tension: How strongly the material resists being pulled vertically apart in opposite directions, simultaneously.
- Cycle: How many open-closure cycles a given set of hooks and loops is intended to endure. Applications such as clothing pockets and shoe straps need high-cycle hooks and loops.
VELCRO® Brand Hook and Loop Fasteners: Material Types
One of your first decisions will be figuring out which type of VELCRO® Brand material you need. Each type offers its own set of advantages:
- Woven: The classic hook and loop fastener most people know and love. It’s still one of the most versatile: easy to dye, easy to sew, and with a long cycle life.
- Knit: Good for applications that require very lightweight or disposable material, or where an extremely wide area of hooks and loops is needed.
- High-Tech Hooks (HTH): A groundbreaking technology developed by VELCRO® that uses advanced polymers to create customized hook and loop systems. HTH can be tailored to specific custom applications by adjusting the size and shape of the hooks and loops.
- Non-Woven: Made by arranging a web of fibers in an asymmetrical web, non-woven hook and loop systems are good for low-cycle applications and for lamination purposes.
VELCRO® Brand Hook and Loop Fasteners: Adhesive Types
VELCRO® Brand hook and loop fasteners are available with several different types of adhesive backing. The environmental conditions of your application will affect which type you need. What is the maximum temperature the bond will need to withstand? How much moisture will it encounter? Consider all of the relevant factors as you choose from the following:
- Pressure-Sensitive: This adhesive type is extremely popular for its ease of use. Simply peel off the backing strip and press the adhesive side onto your substrate. For home, hobby, and convenience projects, pressure-sensitive adhesive will likely be the best and easiest choice. VELCRO® Brand Tape on a Roll is a simple-to-use pressure-sensitive adhesive hook and loop tape that’s available with either rubber or acrylic adhesives.
- Heat-Activated: For a more permanent bond, we recommend heat- or solvent-activated adhesives. They offer great moisture resistance and bind well to most synthetic substrates, but are best used for applications where temperatures won’t exceed 160º. Heat-activated adhesives can be applied via hot air or with an iron or by using heated manufacturing implements.
- Solvent-Activated: If you need great heat resistance and high peel and shear, solvent-activated adhesives are an excellent choice. They can be applied via common solvents like MEK or acetone. The VELCRO® Brand 0140 RF/Heat/Solvent Activated Fasteners are a tough and versatile solution that can be applied by heat, solvents, or radiofrequency welding.
For detailed information on the best adhesive type for your application, take a look at the official guide from VELCRO® Brand! No matter what fastener performance specs your application demands, FASTENation can provide you with a VELCRO® Hook and Loop Tape solution. FASTENation is celebrating more than 21 years of helping our customers attach, connect, and fasten the most important parts of their world. Need more information? Interested in custom orders? Call FASTENation at 1 (800) 876-9922 or contact us online!