UHMW vs. Nylon

Compare UHMW and Nylon to identify the best option for your project

Differences Between UHMW and Nylon

UHMW (ultra high molecular weight polyethylene) is an extremely tough plastic with high abrasion and wear resistance. The versatility of polyethylene has made it a popular plastic for countless industrial applications that require durability, low friction, and chemical resistance. Applications include UHMW wear strips, chain guides, packaging machinery parts, and marine dock fender pads.

Nylon is a strong, stiff engineering plastic with outstanding bearing and wear properties. Nylon is frequently used to replace metal bearings and bushings often eliminating the need for external lubrication. Other benefits include a reduction in part weight, less operating noise, and decreased wear on mating parts.

UHMW-PE colored sheets | Nylon sheets, rods, and tubes

UHMW Material Characteristics

Nylon Material Characteristics

• Good chemical resistance
• Easy to fabricate
• Extremely tough and durable
• Excellent abrasion resistance
• Low friction
• Low moisture absorption
• Good chemical resistance
• Easy to fabricate
• Strong and stiff
• Excellent bearing and wear properties
• Reduced noise, weight, and wear of mating parts
• Easy to machine

UHMW Applications

Nylon Applications

• Packaging machinery parts
• Food processing machinery parts
• Wear strips and guide rails
• Chute, hopper, and truck bed liners
• Star wheels and idler sprockets
• High speed conveyors
• Bumpers, pile guards, and dock fenders
• Packaging machinery parts
• Food processing machinery parts
• Wear pads
• Bearings and bushings
• Gears
• Wheels
• Rollers
• Seals and gaskets

UHMW Common Brands

Nylon Common Brands

• Polystone® M, Tivar®, GUR®, LubX® • SUSTAMID®, TECAMID®, NYCAST®

Typical Properties of UHMW vs. Nylon

Property Units ASTM Test
Specific gravity (73°F) - D792 0.93 1.14
Tensile strength (73°F) psi D638 3,100 12,400
Tensile elongation (73°F) % D638 350 90
Flexural modulus of elasticity (73°F) psi D790 110,000 410,000
Rockwell M&R, Durometer Shore D (73°F)
scale as noted D785,
Shore D 64 M85, R121,
Shore D 80
Izod impact (notched, 73°F) ft-lbs/in D256 18.0* 1.2
Coefficient of friction - Dynamic 0.10 - 0.20 0.28
Coefficient of linear thermal expansion in/in/°Fx10-5 D696 11.1 4.5
Heat deflection temperature (66 psi/264 psi) °F D648 - - / 194
Maximum continuous service temperature in air °F - 180 210
Water absorption (immersion 24 hours) % D570 slight 1.20

Values may vary according to brand name. Please ask your Curbell Plastics representative for more specific information about an individual brand. *Double-15° notch.

Know what you need? Shop our UHMW and Nylon plastics online, or Contact Us with questions about these plastic materials.

Not sure which materials best fit your needs?

Our experienced sales and technical teams are available to assist you with material selection challenges.

Smiling woman
Have a Question?
Curbell Plastics, Inc. Unauthorized use is strictly prohibited. All other trademarks, service marks and logos used herein are property of their respective owners. All rights hereto are retained by Curbell Plastics and any third party owners of such rights. All statements, technical information and recommendations contained in this publication are for informational purposes only. Curbell Plastics, Inc. does not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information contained herein and it is the customer's responsibility to conduct its own research and make its own determination regarding the suitability of specific products for any given application.

©2024 Curbell Plastics, Inc. All rights reserved.

California Transparency in Supply Chains Act | Terms & Conditions | Privacy Policy