IAPD

September 2009 | Focus: Recreation

Plastic materials surround you
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Lifetime uses MAKROLON® clear polycarbonate sheet for its backboards because it is shatterproof, unlike other materials. (Photo courtesy of Sheffield Plastics Inc., A Bayer MaterialScience Company.)

Lifetime uses MAKROLON® clear polycarbonate sheet for its backboards because it is shatterproof, unlike other materials. (Photo courtesy of Sheffield Plastics Inc., A Bayer MaterialScience Company.)

Close your eyes for a moment and picture your family’s favorite recreational site. The park with its playground equipment (made of wood, metal or plastic), basketball court (backboards made of polycarbonate), picnic tables (made of wood or recycled plastic) and the small creek with its canoes, paddle boats and waterslide (all made of ABS, HDPE and UHMW). Oh, and on the way, did you see those construction barriers (HDPE) in the parking lot and the signs directing you to the playground? These items were most likely made from that laminated polyethylene.

And did you know that plastic piping systems are being extensively used in recreational attractions and swimming pools? That piping is most likely joined by an IAPD member who manufactures adhesives or welding equipment and utilizes gaskets of polypropylene or PTFE. Read more.

This article was written by James Harrington, CPMR, Engineered Material Sales Inc.


Innovation on ice: improving hockey rink dasher systems
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Evonik CYRO’s ACRYLITE RinkShield™ acrylic sheet is the first acrylic engineered specifically for the hockey industry.

Evonik CYRO’s ACRYLITE RinkShield™ acrylic sheet is the first acrylic engineered specifically for the hockey industry.

People always say that being at a hockey game is an entirely different experience from watching one on television. Though most fans can’t say exactly what it is about being rink-side that makes the experience so much more enjoyable, a number of recent changes at the Air Canada Centre (ACC) have definitely enhanced the hockey experience.

Home of the Toronto Maple Leafs, the ACC teamed up with Evonik CYRO and Aimcon, Orillia, ON, to engineer a breakthrough in flexible hockey shielding and dasher systems. Aimcon specializes in the design and installation of dasherboards, and accessories and has previously worked with the ACC. Using acrylic sheet for hockey shielding, the collaboration has spawned one of the most efficient hockey shielding systems to date, improving and impacting all facets of the game from the players and fans, to facility maintenance personnel.

“What began as an effort to solve one problem quickly erupted into a team effort that worked to resolve several issues, and improve the overall performance and ease of use of our hockey shielding,” comments Diego Roccasalva, director of building operations, Air Canada Centre. Read more.

This article was written by Evonik CYRO LLC.


The use of cast nylon formulations for amusement park applications is becoming more and more prevalent. High load bearing capacity and low rolling resistance, coupled with the availability of large diameter tubular bar, make cast nylon products a cost-effective alternative to conventional materials.

High load bearing capacity and low rolling resistance, coupled with the availability of large diameter tubular bar, make cast nylon products a cost-effective alternative to conventional materials for amusement park applications. (Photo courtesy of Nylatech Inc.)

Roller coasters: a thrill of a lifetime
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For many people, there is only one reason to go to an amusement park — the roller coaster! Some people call it the scream machine, and for good reason. The history of this ride reflects a constant search for greater and more death-defying thrills. In fact, Americans spend more than $4 billion annually at amusement parks, with roller coasters being the largest attraction.

What you may not realize as you’re plummeting down the track at near 80 miles an hour is that the coaster has no engine, and you are likely riding on plastic wheels. The car is pulled to the top of the first hill at the beginning of the ride, but after that, the coaster must complete the ride on its own. The conversion of potential energy to kinetic energy is what drives the roller coaster, and all of the kinetic energy you need for the ride is present once the coaster descends the first hill. The type of composite material used for the wheels has a significant influence on this energy transfer.

Once you’re underway, different types of wheels help keep the ride smooth. Running wheels guide the coaster on the track. Friction wheels control lateral motion (movement to either side of the track). A final set, called underfriction wheels, keeps the coaster on the track while inverted or cresting a hill at negative G’s. Read more.

This article was written by Calvin Petersen, Nylatech Inc.


A vault rooflight from Brett Martin proved ideal for Glasgow Rangers Football Club’s training academy.

A vault rooflight from Brett Martin proved ideal for Glasgow Rangers Football Club’s training academy.

Versatility in plastics
REPRINTED FROM THE IAPD MAGAZINE

The extensive range of premium quality plastic materials available today provides the opportunity to create exciting and diverse projects for recreation. From polycarbonate sheet in a range of solid, profiled and multi-wall products, to a variety of matt, gloss, composite and anti-static foam PVC sheet, to solid acrylic sheet and opaque, flat polycarbonate sheet, the possibilities are limitless!

Polycarbonate in particular is an extremely versatile product. Polycarbonate’s ease of fabrication proved successful on the design for a football training academy for Glasgow Rangers Football Club. It was developed to ensure maximum natural daylight within and to enhance the internal environment and playing conditions. Conical roof structures at each of the two entrances, with an 8.4 m radius and 5.8 m radius respectively, were double glazed using solid polycarbonate, allowing a flood of natural daylight into the entrance areas, transforming them into dramatic and bright spaces. Polycarbonate’s ability to be cold-bent on site or pre-formed beforehand made it ideal for use in the domes, combined with its impressive impact resistance up to 200 times that of glass with only half the weight. Read more.

This article was written by Andrea Copithorne, Brett Martin Inc., a subsidiary of Brett Martin Ltd.


Test Your Knowledge

What do you know about plastics in recreation applications? (Answers are at www.iapd.org/popquiz.html.)

1. What material is often used for roller coasters due to its high load bearing capacity and low rolling resistance?
            a. acrylic
            b. cast nylon
            c. polycarbonate
            d. polystyrene

2.  Polycarbonate is a material of choice for domes because of what characteristics?
            a. easily thermoformed and fabricated
            b. ability to be cold-bent on site
            c. excellent optical clarity
            d. all of the above

 

Sponsored by

Polygal

In this issue

Plastic materials surround you
Plastics are everywhere you look.

Innovation on ice: improving hockey rink dasher systems
Acrylic finds place ringside, perfect for fan's protection and viewing.

Roller coasters: a thrill of a lifetime
You're flying down the track at 80 miles an hour ... on plastic.

Versatility in plastics
Polycarbonate offers football club sunlit games.

Test your knowledge
What do you know about plastic materials used in recreation applications?

About IAPD
The International Association of Plastics Distribution, founded in 1956, is an international trade association comprised of companies engaged in the distribution and manufacture of plastics materials.

Members include plastics distributors, processors, manufacturers, resin manufacturers, manufacturers’ representatives and associated products and services, all of whom are dedicated to the distribution channel. Visit www.iapd.org for more information.

 

 

IAPD
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IAPD International Association of Plastics Distribution
6734 W. 121st Street, Overland Park, KS 66209 USA
www.iapd.org | iapd@iapd.org
Phone: +913.345.1005 | Fax: +913.345.1006
Designing with Plastics is published by the International Association of Plastics Distribution. While every effort has been made for accuracy, IAPD encourages you to verify information with a plastics distributor to ensure you select the correct plastic products to meet your needs.
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