Widely used in the construction industry, composite strapping has many applications, especially in timber strapping. It’s used in sawmills and timber processing, as well as for trusses, scaffolding and wall framing materials.
Not only does composite strapping have high system strength—it’s sometimes referred to as “synthetic steel”—it’s non-abrasive and retains tension.
It’s less dangerous than steel too, because recoil isn’t a problem, nor are sharp edges. Therefore, in the construction industry, as in many other industries, composite strapping reduces worker injuries.
However, if you’re using steel strapping, you may be unsure about switching to composite strapping. What is it, and is it as strong as steel?
Composite strapping: equal to steel strapping
Composite strapping, or “corded polyester strapping”, is made of a polymer coating wrapped around polyester (polypropylene) yarns. It’s manufactured in many different widths and strengths, making it an excellent alternative to steel.
Since polypropylene gives composite strapping its strength, in some forms it can even be stronger than steel, depending on the polypropylene used in the product. And unlike steel, composite strapping won’t rust and damage products. Nor will it warp them, making it useful in applications like timber strapping.
Composite strapping is secured and tensioned via buckles. When necessary, loads can easily be re-tensioned, if a load shifts or settles during transport or storage. Another benefit: if desired, the strap can be reused, otherwise, it can be recycled.
You may prefer composite strapping if you’re shipping irregularly-shaped items, or items which are delicate yet heavy, such as glass, and ceramic products like tiles. System strength varies, depending on the type of strap and the buckles used. When purchasing, request the system strength (strap and buckle combination), as well as the strap strength, to ensure that it’s adequate.
Let’s look at the benefits of composite strapping in delivering safe and secure shipments for the construction industry.
1. Composite strapping retains tension, while absorbing shocks during shipping
In the construction industry, strapping which retains its tension is important. Loads of bricks, steel, timber, and glass may not only be transported long distances, they may also be stored for long periods in changeable and varying weather conditions.
If strapping loses its tension because products settle in transport, it leads to load shifting and damaged products. Composite strapping not only keeps its tension over time, it can also be re-tensioned if required. Additionally, unlike steel, composite strapping won’t split and is weather-resistant. This means that products may be stored on construction sites without weather damage.
Further, because composite strapping is made up of tough fibres, it can secure a load even if it’s accidentally damaged by a nick or a cut.
What about shock absorption?
Invariably, incidents in shipping and loading and unloading cause shocks. Unlike other strapping options, composite strapping absorbs shocks, lessening product damage. You’ll have fewer dissatisfied customers too.
When shipping sharp-edged products which may damage your strap, it’s advisable to use cardboard or edge protectors between the product and the strap.
2. Composite protects your products from damage and enhances profits
In construction, shipping poses challenges. You need to protect delicate, often heavy, and sometimes awkwardly-shaped products from damage. So, it’s essential that you choose your strapping materials with care.
Unlike steel, composite strapping is soft, without hard, sharp edges to cause damage to your products. It’s also non-abrasive, as well as rust-proof, so it won’t stain. The buckles are galvanized steel, but the strap ensures the buckles don’t contact your products.
3. Shipping challenges: smaller bundled products
Composite strapping can not only be used to strap your pallets, you can also use it to secure product units and bundles of products.
Although smaller bundles can be challenging for steel or polyester strapping, they’re easily managed with composite strapping. To manage smaller bundles of items, use a mobile strap dispenser or rolls with a manual small-bundle tensioner.
When required, you can also secure smaller bundles manually, with a manual tensioning tool.
New to composite strapping? Check out our starter kit.
4. Composite strapping secures products in rail cars, as well as containers for overseas shipping
When you ship products via rail, composite strapping offers a solution to secure your products in rail cars. Unlike chains, this soft strapping cushions products, avoiding damages causes by shocks when trains are shunted.
If you ship products overseas, it’s vital to secure products in containers. Composite strapping can be used to lash timber, glass, ceramic tiles, steel coils and plates, and sheets of materials safely. It’s a cost-effective solution to ensure that your items won’t move during shipping, no matter how turbulent seas become.
Thinking about composite strapping?
If you’re in the construction industry, you may be new to composite strapping. Contact us for advice on product selection.