In line with international standards, thermoplastic piping specialist, Plasti-Tech has introduced high-density polyethylene stub ends labelled with a Lynx laser printer using invisible laser-radiation.
Plasti-Tech has become the first supplier to offer HDPE butt ends with this sort of labelling in South Africa, moving away from the conventional white marker approach.
Plasti-Tech managing member Brad Chamont highlights the worrying lack of traceability in the market for HDPE stub ends in South Africa, owing to the fact that there is no identification and marking tools for these products. This creates room for manufacturers to turn a blind eye to the quality of their products and subsequent lack of accountability for failures that may occur as a result of installing poor quality HDPE fittings.
Brad highlights that the importance of labelling stub ends using the Lynx laser machine is that the manufacturer’s mark, size and pressure rating markings are permanently visible. They cannot be tampered with without damaging the butt ends.
“The labelling method currently being used across the local market is a white marker. The obvious shortcoming of this approach is that it can be rubbed off during regular handling of the butt ends.”
Internationally, the European Standards Association requires the manufacturers name and fittings information to be clearly marked on all HDPE fittings. Barcodes also form part of these standards to facilitate ease of traceability.
In line with these international standards, the Installation and Fabrication Plastics Pipes Association (IFPA) is, in the next few months, scheduled to pass a regulation that compels labelling of stub ends using permanent markings such as the Lynx laser printer locally. Brad is confident that Plasti-Tech’s labelling model will conform to the IFPA standards.
The combination of stub ends and backing flanges is an alternative to the use of a conventional pipe to pipe butt-weld. Typical applications include slurry pipelines where sections of the pipeline can be easily removed and replaced in sections due to the stub and flange mechanical connection.
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