This article was written and sent to Ezine Articles somewhere around 2010/2011. Enjoy!
I was searching the Internet the other day for something to write about that might have a bearing on my business of converting PVC pipe into Imitation Bamboo and found something very interesting.
One of the PVC pipe manufacturers performed an interesting test, as part of their service and commitment to their customers. Apparently they, these and other producers, are always doing some or other test to evaluate and measure their PVC, both their specifications and the necessity for change. As needs and demands change over time, they are coping by first testing the variables the consumer is demanding.
One of these tests concerns sunlight. Long-term exposure to UV rays generally degrades anything and everything. It’s nature’s way of reclaiming life, maybe we should call it ‘natural recycling’ and, obviously, even our Imitation Bamboo will eventually need to be recycled.
Not so long ago a 2-year test was done to find out the effects of sunlight on PVC pipe, which we use as the basis for our Imitation Bamboo. Harmful UV rays, and its effect, was quantified and recorded.
PVC pipes were stacked outside on racks, fully exposed to the sun and turned periodically so that the whole pipe was open to the elements. They reclaimed a few pipes every so often and tested their integrity, strength, and whatever else they deemed necessary.
At first glance, I thought that what they found was astonishing. There seemed to be no real harm done. The pipes could still carry their load – deliver liquids – generally under pressure. After 2 years there was no degradation, no loss of physical attributes and no visible ruin.
The PVC pipe could still withstand the pressure it was designed to endure. In effect that means no leakages. Also, the sun did not eat up too much of the surface. The next test, over 15 years, proved that the UV rays scoured only 0.002 inches off the surface. I thought that was fantastic, highly minimal corrosion if you ask me, exactly what I wanted to hear.
Of course, when the time comes, recycling our Imitation Bamboo will be a very important step toward saving our planet. Plastic Recyclers will hopefully be able to reuse and maybe remake these pipes or convert them into Irrigation tubes. Nothing should go to waste.
So how does this affect our Bamfaux (Imitation Bamboo)? Well, the painting that we do on the surface of the pipe, to color it to mimic Bamboo, will obviously degrade or fade first. Then, because our method, and the paints we use, allows the coloring to further penetrate the PVC, this will afford our Synthetic/Imitation Bamboo a fraction more protection, or resistance.
Plus, some paints are better suited to the outdoors than others. The paints we use are specially mixed, more resistant to UV rays than, say, the paint you use on the exterior of your home. I have not yet found a time factor to corroborate this fact but I will tell you this. The paints we use have lasted 10 years and more in other applications, so to be conservative we’re saying our Bamfaux should last a period of 3 years and longer. Also our Imitation Bamboo has been in many areas, sunlight, shade, indoors and out, I have seen our Bamfaux at various places and they do look good.
I cannot guarantee that, of course. You know as well as I do that in some areas the sun is harsher than others. In dryer areas, like desert and semi-desert, the sun seems closer to Earth, stronger. It strips away any moisturizing properties the paint and PVC combination (which makes up our Synthetic/Imitation Bamboo) might have had, whereas others areas, colder climates that see less sun and therefore have less sunny days, this combination will last many, many, times longer even outside in the direct sunlight.
I do know that authentic, real, live, Bamboo will not last as long as our Imitation Bamboo, not in direct sunlight, not in humidity and definitely not outdoors where it is subject to both rain and shine as well as the harsh extremities of weather, specifically the UV rays of sunlight.
Written by Judeline Meintjes who is also part owner of JoeJude Enterprises. Imitation Bamboo is called Bamfaux and can be obtained from our webpage at http://www.imitationbamboo.net/ – For themes, décor, art, as well as both commercial and residential applications, please visit our web site.
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