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A rubber band (in some regions known as a binder, elastic band, lackey band or gumband in Pittsburgh, as well as some parts of Australia) is a short length of rubber and latex formed in the shape of a loop. Such bands are typically used to hold multiple objects together. The rubber band was patented in England on March 17, 1845 by Stephen Perry.
Additional recommended knowledge
The manufacturing process involves extruding the rubber into a long tube to provide its general shape, putting the tubes on mandrels and curing the rubber with heat, and then slicing it along the width of the tube into little bands. While other rubber products may use synthetic rubber, rubber bands are still primarily manufactured using natural rubber because of its superior elasticity.
The modern rubber band is different from its ancestor at the time of patenting by Stephen Perry in that rubber is now vulcanized. The vulcanization process makes the rubber more durable and elastic, and therefore makes the rubber band more useful.
Rubber Band Sizes
A rubber band has three basic dimensions: Length, width, and thickness. (See picture.)
A rubber band's length is half its circumference.
Its thickness is the distance from the inner circle to the outer circle.
Lay a rubber band down so that it makes a circle. The band's width is the height of that band or cylinder. If one imagines a long tube of rubber before it is sliced into rubber bands, the band's width is how far apart the slices are cut.
Rubber Band Size Numbers
A rubber band is given a [quasi-]standard number based on its dimensions.
Generally, rubber bands are numbered from small to large, width first. Thus, rubber bands numbered 8-19 are all 1/16 inches wide, with length going from 7/8 inches to 3 1/2 inches. Rubber band numbers 30-34 are for width of 1/8 inches, going again from shorter to longer. For even longer bands, the numbering starts over for numbers above 100, again starting at width 1/16 inches.
The origin of these size numbers is not clear and there appears to be some conflict in the "standard" numbers. For example, one distributor has a size 117 being 1/16 inch wide and a size 127 being 1/8 inch wide. However, an OfficeMax size 117 is 1/8 inch wide. A manufacturer has a size 117A (1/16 inch wide) and a 117B (1/8 inch wide). Another distributor calls them 7AA (1/16 inch wide) and 7A (1/8 inch wide) (but labels them as specialty bands).
Because of the rebound property resulting from a rubber band's elasticity, the rubber band has numerous uses, many recreational and others serious.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Rubber_band". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|