Alkimos® HPPE Ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene plus yarn wrapping technology advances glove comfort and cut resistance – out-competes “cheap” alternatives

Spiral wound gloves in HPPE offer a best practice solution for long-term wear in cut risk environments. They are washable up to 14 times and still retain the same level of cut resistance making them excellent for food working, meat preparation, engineering, glass manufacturing, mining etc.

HPPE based fabric is almost the ideal material from which to manufacture cut-resistant gloves and is used in yarn wrapping construction which provides cut resistance from the Alkimos® HPPE sheath, with the internal fibre providing core structural strength resulting in a tough, resilient weave with exceptional performance and resistance to degradation.

The development of lightweight but highly effective, comfortable and hardwearing cut resistant gloves for all types of industrial environment is one of the little acknowledged success stories in health and safety technology. This has generally involved development and use of tougher materials, sometimes blended with steel threads and using traditional glove weaving technologies. In recent years however we have seen rapid progress in the production of spiral wound yarns which further facilitate an advanced blending of materials and physical characteristics in the final garment.

The spiral wrapping eg with HPPE supports core fibres in the flexing of day to day wear so ensuring a soft comfortable fit without the itchiness associated with release of glass micro-fibres.

The Alkimos® spiral wrap technology facilitates the use of multiple fibre blends with steel, glass fibre, nylon or other material as the core wrapped in the ultra-high-density polyethylene thread. Thus, it is possible to choose the cut protection level appropriate to the environment and risk profile of the operation, with confidence that this protection will continue to perform at its optimal specification for a greatly extended period.

HPPE based yarn is extremely tough and so protects the core from mechanical damage such as breakage and dramatically limits any fraying in the wash process. This is why gloves manufactured with Alkimos® yarn are able to maintain their extremely high performance for an exceptional number of wash cycles.

We have observed that even in quarries and mines workers can be seen wearing basic nylon coated gloves where it is clear that proper Cut Gloves should be used. Even if an ostensibly “cut glove” is used, as with any health and safety equipment, there will always be people who find ways of producing cheaper products that only just pass the standard tests or even submit special samples for testing, but these products are simply contrary to the basic aims of HSE which is to protect the operative. What good is PPE if it is so fragile that it fails to last a reasonable time or if it is only designed to meet the laboratory test but offers little in the field – or if it is so uncomfortable that operatives prefer not to wear it?

These cheap cut gloves have some fundamental problems:

Take the example of a low end cut level 3 glove; to achieve CE cut level 3, the tested glove has to score an index of 5 and above (customers can easily see this from the CE test report provided by the manufacturer), if the gloves are made of good quality cut yarn, the cut index should reach an index of 6 and above, whilst the cheap one may only go as high as 4.9 or border line 5.

In the worst cases these cheap options only appear good on paper (i.e. on the test report) with selected samples and a favourable set up, while the actual long term production rarely reaches cut level 3; in which case they would definitely not pass the even more stringent ASTM ANSI or ISO cut tests, while leaving workers poorly protected with the cost benefit accrued to manufacturer profits.

In the personal protection industry, it is a universal truism that to be safe you must first ensure the safety equipment is worn. We understand that most accidents happen when protective equipment is discarded or simply not worn at all, on the basis that it is uncomfortable or makes it difficult to carry out a task properly/in a timely fashion.

Ultimately a better cut yarn means a better glove, better cut resistance, better working and lower costs.

The Aquila® range of cut resistant gloves are made with this unique Alkimos® HPPE yarn, which is a genuine Ultra high molecular weight polyethylene yarn, over the whole glove and cuff. Due to the way the yarns are woven and mixed, all Aquila® cut gloves can be washed for multiple times – up to 14 times and have been shown to still pass their cut level test.

So – are you specifying the right glove for the safety of your workers and in the best interests of your company?

Aquila gloves are available from our distributors around the globe or direct from ourselves where more appropriate. We currently work in the following countries: USA, UK, Italy, Denmark, Sweden, Iceland, Australia, Portugal, New Zealand, South Africa, Finland.

For details of our supply in your area, please contact: [email protected]

Further information regarding Aquila® products may be found at: www.aquilaglove.com or follow us on twitter: www.twitter.com/@aquilaglove

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