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Tri-Dee Distributors Inc.
(360) 336-6131or Fax:(360) 336-2393
9:30 to 5:30 PT 12:30 to 8:30 ET
Composite Board info

Supplying U.S. & Canada Since 1967

             All About Foam BoardsFoam Board Handling & CuttingMounting Board InfoMeasurement ConversionsGatorfoam Handling & Cutting

   foam centered boards

 In need of high-quality composite foam center boards! Look no further than Tri-Dee Distributors Inc. We offer a wide variety of foam boards at competitive prices. From standard paper faced Foam Core Boards to Aluminum clad Foam We keep our items in stock, you receive your order quickly. With strict attention to detail, and we can custom cut your boards to meet your needs.  order online or by phone,  we are here to serve you. 
       For more information on Foam Centered boards,
Please do not hesitate to contact us anytime with your needs at (360) 336-6131
  9:30 to 5:30 PT


  Cut to Size AvailableCut to Size Available in most all types of boards                  
Our Shipping centers are located throughout North America. [USA]   [CANADA]
             Normal shipping time for un cut sheets is 4 to 10  days.  Add a few days for custom cutting. We save you money on Freight ,

             Note: sizes 32" X 48" X 6" and under can ship UPS / FedEx  Call for Quote.

Foam core / Foam board / Fome-cor /Foam-x

Foam core boards are made with a polystyrene foam core and either a white clay coated, black or brown Kraft paper facing.  The way the polystyrene bubbles are formed during manufacture allows the edges to stay sealed, or at least crimped, during die cutting. This creates a characteristic pillow effect. It also means that any accidental impressions or dents can permanently damage the foam board. The foam center is not affected by moisture, but the surface paper is, and outdoor use as well as wet mounting can be a problem. The surface of foam boards will readily accept oil paints and acrylic paints, but the foam is sensitive to solvents, particularly those in lacquers and shellacs. Fome-Cor cuts easily with a razor blade, if the blade is sharp and without defects; if it is not, it can tear the foam board instead of cutting it. My experience with this particular foam board is that it behaves as if it had a grain and tends to cut well in only one direction. This board is commonly used in dry mounting and vacuum mounting, as well as in wet mounting when counter mounting is done.

 There are several types or brands of Foam board:

 Standard foam board, Foam-x, Fome-Cor, sturdy board, Releal By Insite, Biodegradable, Fire Resistant Foam Board by Insite, Acid-free (ARCHIVAL) Fome-cor,  The surface pH of Foam Board is slightly acidic, 5.5 to 6.5, and it is for this reason Monsanto produces an acid-free Fome-Cor where the surface paper is buffered to a pH of 7.5 to 8.5. The printed literature for this board suggests that it is archival and may be used as a substitute for museum board. This seems questionable because, for example, the surface of this foam board is made from a Kraft paper and not a purified cellulose, or cotton fiber. It is uncertain how much alkaline reserve the buffer can provide in neutralizing air pollutants and the natural formation of acid during the aging of Kraft paper. There are also questions about the permanency of polystyrene itself. This foam board is obviously an improvement on the original, nevertheless it is heavily used in the picture framing industry.

Composition of Foam Cores

Structural foam cores are manufactured from a number of thermoset and thermoplastic polymers including polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyurethane (PU), polystyrene (PS), styrene acrylonitrile (SAN), polyetherimide (PEI) and polymethacrylimide (PMI). Foams (with the exception of polyurethanes) are produced by mixing liquid polymers and blowing agents, then pouring the mixture into metal molds and allowing a partial cure under high heat and pressure. The resulting rubbery mass, sometimes called an amoeba or an embryo, is demolded, then placed in a second mold and heated again (with hot water or steam) in an expansion chamber, which activates the blowing agent and controls the gas expansion pressure. The result is a roughly 4-ft by 8-ft by several-inch-thick block of foam, containing closed, gas-filled bubbles or cells. Foams can be manufactured in densities ranging from 2 lb/ft3 (30 kg/m3) up to 20 lb/ft3 (300 kg/m3) by varying the ratio of the polymer ingredients to blowing agents and adjusting gas pressure. Polyurethane foam, a thermoset that generates gas when an isocyanate is mixed with a polyol, is either made in batches ("bun casting") or a continuous foaming process.

Of the various structural foam core types, perhaps the most commonly used is PVC, which is actually a hybrid of PVC and polyurea. Two types of PVC foam are available. Cross linked, or semi-rigid, foams are relatively stiff and strong, can perform at temperatures up to 120°C/250°F and are resistant to styrene, so they can be used with polyester and vinyl ester resins. Linear or ductile PVC foams, made with a different polymer formulation, are more elastic than cross linked varieties and are widely used in marine applications, where they offer high deflection before failure and excellent impact resistance. While linear PVC is easier to heat-form around complex curves, the tradeoff is somewhat lower mechanical properties and reduced temperature resistance compared to the cross linked version. Both offer good properties in fatigue resistance.

Because foams like PVC contain gas under pressure, out gassing can occur over time — that is, the gas escapes from the closed cells and migrates to voids or unbonded areas in the laminate. In some instances, out gassing has been blamed for delaminating and blistering in marine construction, especially in parts made at elevated cure temperatures with epoxy resin systems or finished in dark colors. But core experts contend the problem is caused primarily by improper laminating technique and poor skin-to-core bond. Most core manufacturers offer "stabilized" products that minimize the problem.



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