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Factors to Consider When Choosing a Rubber Fender

A rubber fender plays an important role during docking. When a ship is being moored to its allocated spot, the vessel transfers a lot of energy to the wharf. Rubber fenders are designed to absorb this energy thereby eliminating any damage that could be caused to the wharf or ship. When it comes to rubber fenders, there are many types available. Choosing a rubber fender can be a hectic task. Weighing in several factors into your decision will help you choose the right rubber fender. Cylindrical fenders, cone fenders, and pneumatic rubber fenders are some of the options available. Pneumatic rubber fenders have gained popularity in use since their invention over fifty years ago. They are made of used tires and are filled with compressed air. They have several features that make them ideal for a ship to ship contact and for the birthing process. This article has the factors you should consider when choosing a rubber fender and characteristics that make pneumatic rubber fender ideal for marine applications.

The dimensions of the water vessel are important considerations when choosing a rubber fender. The vessel dimension and the tonnage determine the type of fender that is most suitable and also the size of the fender you should select. For a large vessel, you will need bigger rubber fenders. Larger rubber fenders enable better berthing energy absorption for large vessels. High energy absorption is important when it comes to rubber fenders. Pneumatic rubber fenders offer high energy absorption. As the ship’s tonnage increases, the impact of energy during berthing operations increases. Full deformation and larger contact area of pneumatic rubber fenders allow for the absorption of this high impact energy. Pneumatic rubber fenders can achieve this since they have compression deformation of over 60% and the contact surface area also expands during the process. Compared to other types of rubber fenders, pneumatic rubber fenders offer higher energy absorption.

The type of port should also be considered when choosing a rubber fender. Depending on the structure of the port, certain rubber fenders will be more suitable. There are many types of port structures. Dolphin, monopile, jetty and quay wall are some types of structures available. When it comes to port structure, poor selection of the rubber fender will result in significant damage to the dock and berthing vessel. The berthing vessel requires a certain angle of access to the shore for docking. Pneumatic rubber fenders are more adaptable for inclined contacts.

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Finally, consider the marine environment. The changing of the tides and wind power will determine the type of rubber fender that is most suitable. Elongated rubber fenders are ideal when there is a huge difference between high tides and low tides. V-type fenders are suitable for windy and wavy docks. Pneumatic rubber fenders don’t change position by the tiding. They are also able to roll with minimal friction when the vessel is vibrating or swaying. These characteristics make pneumatic rubber fenders perfect for different types of vessels and a wide range of applications. When choosing a rubber fender, use these factors.

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