Comparing Vinyl and Rubber Benchtop Matting – All-Spec Industries


Hi, my name’s Todd. In this video, I’m going to explain the differences between the
vinyl and rubber benchtop matting products that we offer here at All-Spec Industries. All-Spec Industries carries rubber and vinyl matting products
from 3M, ACL, Sierra and Static Solutions. Specifically in this video, we’ll be reviewing the properties for the Sierra brand matting. All of our benchtop mat kits are ESD-safe and
include an ESD-safe wrist strap and ground cord. Look for a future All-Spec Industries video about
how to set up an ESD-safe workspace. The rubber matting features a dissipative top layer and a conductive bottom layer, while the vinyl matting features a dissipative top layer, a conductive
scrim middle layer, and another dissipative cushioned bottom foam layer. Now let’s look at some of the applications comparing the vinyl and rubber matting. The main difference between vinyl and rubber matting is their heat resistance. I’m going to go ahead and cut a soldering station on. We’re going to let that
heat up. As you can see, it’s going to heat up to 600 degrees. Once it’s heated up, we’re going to go ahead and take some solder wire, get some
solder droplets on the vinyl matting and rubber matting so you can see the difference, how the vinyl and rubber mats react. Okay, we’re up to about 550 degrees so it’s slowing
down as it heats up close to the temperature. I’ll go ahead and pick up our soldering iron. Soldering irons are very hot – Don’t burn yourself
and don’t inhale any of the fumes as they any fumes, as they are very dangerous. Now that the soldering iron’s heated up, we’re going to go ahead and take
some solder, melt it on the tip of our soldering iron. You can see the smoke comes as the wire’s melting. The solder’s going to actually pull up on the tip. You can
see the tip’s actually holding most of that solder. Now that solder is liquid, it’s very hot. So if I do like that, it drops onto the mat. I
can pick it back up, splash it on the mat. It’s not doing anything to the rubber mat. Might get a little bit of slight discoloration from the
flux residue, but actually isn’t hurting the mat. Now if we come over to the vinyl mat with the same ball of solder, splash it
down on the vinyl mat. Again, you can pick it up a little bit. When you try to pick it up, though, it’s actually sticking to the vinyl
mat because it’s actually heating up the vinyl mat and melting it. So I can’t actually get the solder off of it, as well as you can see the
discoloration. That discoloration on the vinyl mat is actually not from the actual flux residue. It’s actually melting and burning the mat. I can’t
even get the solder all off of it. Okay, so as you can see, I’m going to go ahead and put
my initials. It actually burned in your initials into the mat. And I’m not pushing very hard, I’m just letting
the heat of the iron actually melt it. You can see it’s still hot, still going to go
ahead and melt some more solder onto it. Again, back over to the rubber mat, I’m actually going to lay the solder
iron on the rubber mat and try to spell my name on here. And it’s not doing anything, got a little bit of that flux residue on
there. I can’t even make it show up with my initials. I’m going to go ahead and cradle our soldering iron, take some mat
cleaner, spray some mat cleaner on each of our two mats. Try to wipe it off. As you can see, it’s not wiping anything off of this vinyl mat.
The solder’s still glued to it, melted into it, initials are still there, the discoloration’s still there. On the rubber matting, wipe it up. Still slight discoloration but there’s no big grooves, the
solder’s not melted to it. So as you can see, it’s much more durable. Alright, so we’re going to compare the actual abrasion resistance
and impact resistance between the vinyl and rubber matting. The vinyl matting is obviously far less superior than the rubber matting as far
as heat resistance. However, it does have the benefit of being softer. For assembly reasons, sometimes it’s a better choice for you without soldering. As you
can see, there’s kind of a foam layer on the bottom, so the matting actually does depress when you push on
it, which offers you some impact resistance. It’s not going to be the same as dropping it
on a marshmallow, but it is fairly soft. The rubber matting, in contrast, is very hard. I can’t compress it at all. When
you drop it on it, it’s basically just like dropping it on the floor. Now as far as the actual abrasion resistance, take the scissor, I’m
just going to scratch it across this vinyl mat. As you can see, it’s basically leaving a cut, a small
cut, but a cut in there from a dull scissor. On the rubber mat, do the same thing and drag it across.
You can barely see it’s leaving a mark at all. Alright, and I’m pushing very hard. As far as the cut resistance, again we’re going to go back to
the vinyl mat and I’m going to attempt to cut through here. And basically in two cuts, I’m kind of cutting right through that. With the rubber matting, you can try to cut it. The scissors are getting bent. We can try to see if
we can force it to cut it, we can but not very easily, not a very sharp edge. It’s mangled. The rubber mat is much more abrasion and cut resistant. In this video, we went over the differences between the vinyl and rubber matting to show
you when a vinyl mat is preferable and when a rubber mat is preferable. The rubber mat is preferable for heat and chemical resistance. However, if you’re not going to be doing any soldering or working with any
chemicals, then you’ll probably be better off with the vinyl matting. It offers slightly better impact resistance for assembly. If you drop
an item, it’s a little bit more giving. However, again if any soldering, you’re going to be
better offer with the rubber matting. Please remember to take a look for future videos on our
website at www.All-Spec.com. Thank you very much for watching.

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