What Are O-ring Cords and O-ring Seals?

O-rings for industrial uses near Lexington, Kentucky

What Are O-ring Cords and O-ring Seals?

O-ring seals might get the most attention, but at IB Moore Company, our experienced team understands that O-ring cords are sometimes a better solution. Both seal fluids or gases within machinery or mechanical systems, yet they achieve this through different approaches. We can help you decide which one is best suited for your needs.

O-ring Cords vs. O-ring Seals: Understanding the Distinction

The first distinction between O-ring seals and O-ring cords is their appearance:

  • O-ring seals are pre-formed ready-made in specific sizes and shapes. They’re manufactured in predefined sizes and cross-sectional shapes with precise fit measurements.
  • O-ring cords can be cut to custom lengths. They come in continuous cords or lengths of elastomeric materials – that flexibility allows you to bond or splice the ends together to create a seal. We recommend cords for O-rings when clients have applications that need custom sealing.

How O-ring Cords Work

Cords for O-rings create a barrier against leaks by filling the space between mating surfaces or components. When compressed within a groove or between two surfaces, the cord’s elastomeric material conforms to the irregularities of the mating surfaces. That compression creates a seal that prevents the escape of fluids or gases and prevents external contaminants from entering the sealed area.

O-ring cords achieve their sealing properties by deformation the elastomeric material under pressure. That allows the cord to maintain contact with the sealing surfaces for a tight seal, even under the most challenging operating conditions. The material’s elasticity also enables the cord to rebound to its original shape after compression.

Benefits of O-ring Cords Compared to O-ring Seals

O-ring cords have several advantages over traditional O-ring seals for specific applications:

  • Versatility in size and shape for customization that fits unique sealing requirements. That eliminates the need for extensive tooling or inventory management, resulting in cost savings and reduced lead times.
  • Suitability for large or non-standard sealing applications where conventional seals may not be effective. Cords for O-rings can be cut to the desired length and joined together for sealing challenges, like irregularly shaped surfaces and oversized equipment.
  • Enhanced resistance to extrusion and dynamic motion due to their ability to distribute pressure more evenly along sealing interfaces. That makes them ideal for reciprocating or oscillating motion applications, where traditional seals may experience premature wear or failure.

Choosing the Right Sealing Solution

When evaluating which option is best suited for a particular application, consider the following:

  • Size and Shape Requirements: If standard-sized seals don’t match the dimensions of the sealing groove or if custom configurations are needed, O-ring cords provide the necessary flexibility.
  • Operating Conditions: Assess the temperature, pressure, and chemical compatibility requirements of the application to ensure the selected sealing material can withstand the anticipated conditions without degradation or failure.
  • Motion and Dynamic Stress: For applications involving dynamic motion or high levels of mechanical stress, O-ring cords may offer superior resilience and longevity compared to pre-formed O-rings.

While O-ring seals remain a staple in many sealing applications, O-ring cords offer a flexible alternative with considerable advantages.

IB Moore Company O-ring Kits

Our standard O-ring kits contain O-rings, cords, gaskets, molded parts, springs, and custom seals. We create them for different industries and projects and can guide you through selection. Our standard O-ring and O-ring cord kits  feature these materials:

  • Buna: Made from nitrile to withstand tearing
  • EPDM: Resists water and steam, many bases, and acids
  • HNBR: Effective against most oils and high temperatures
  • Viton®: Resists strong chemicals and fungus
  • Neoprene®: Withstands low temperatures and seawater
  • Silicone: Resists a wide range of temperatures, water, ozone, and acids

We also design custom O-ring and O-ring cord kits based on client requirements.

Choose IB Moore Company, LLC, for Your Industrial Sealing Needs

Our informed, skilled team employees use tactical thinking to create solutions that have earned us countless loyal clients – we’re committed to reliability, quality, and peace of mind for our customers. IB Moore leverages the best solutions for companies that need efficient sealing solutions. Contact us in Lexington, Kentucky, for more nationwide service. We answer inquiries in less than two business days, and you can call our team for even faster service.