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  • Durometer vs. Compression Force Deflection

Durometer vs. Compression Force Deflection

Across many industries, there are several methods to assess the firmness or hardness of materials. The two most used methods are Durometer and Compression Force Deflection (CFD). Durometer is widely utilized, particularly for solid materials across a wide spectrum of hardness. However, Pres-On uses Compression Force Deflection to determine the firmness of its foam products. 

What is Durometer?

Durometer is a measurement of the hardness of a material. It is used to determine the material’s resistance to indentation or penetration. A higher durometer value indicates a harder material, while a lower durometer value indicates a softer material. 

Shore is the scale that measures durometer. There are different types of Shore scales, such as Shore OO, Shore A, and Shore D. Each of which are used to determine the hardness of different materials. A higher Shore value indicates a harder material, while a lower Shore value indicates a softer material. Shore hardness is important in determining the durability, flexibility, and suitability of materials for various applications.

What is Compression Force Deflection?

Compression force deflection, or CFD refers to the relationship between the amount of force applied to a material and the resulting amount of compression or deformation that the material undergoes. When a force is applied to a foam material it will compress in response to that force. The amount of compression that occurs will depend on the material’s properties, such as its stiffness or elasticity. Different materials will exhibit different compression force deflection behaviors – some materials will compress easily under a relatively low amount of force, while others may require a much higher force to deform.

The CFD can provide important information about the mechanical properties of a material. For example, it can help determine the material’s stiffness, resilience, and ability to return to its original shape after being compressed. By analyzing the CFD, engineers and designers can optimize the performance of a material for specific applications. Pres-On uses a 25% compression deflection as our standard.

25% Compression Deflection Guide

Why Pres-On uses Compression Force Deflection

Our foam materials are defined as cellular foams, meaning they are made up of interconnected cells filled with air. This creates the lightweight and flexible structure of the foam. Because of the cellular structure of foams, durometer is not an accurate method for determining their hardness. When testing for durometer, the shore tip can only measure a small area of the foam, which may not be representative of the entire sample.  To get an accurate result one would have to take the average of numerous tests. 

In comparison, compression force deflection provides a more accurate representation of the material’s firmness. Measuring compression force deflection allows for a better understanding of how a material will perform in real-life applications, as it measures the average firmness of the entire sample rather than just a small section. This method enables designers to make more informed decisions about the material’s hardness based on the specific compression levels required for the application.

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