1st In Emergency Products, based in Pompton Lakes, N.J., manufactures products for use by police, fire and EMS personnel by building customized cabinet, storage units, consoles and other products designed specifically for first responders. They selected Vycom’s Seaboard® High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) for a variety of drawer components and face plates because it’s easy to work with and can withstand the motion, moisture and temperature extremes inside a vehicle.
As part of Vycom’s Seaboard line, the HDPE typically used for marine, RV and outdoor applications provides superior performance where water, UV exposure, and other harsh elements are present. Unlike wood or metal alternatives, Seaboard HDPE will not rust, corrode, rot, delaminate or splinter. It also offers superior scratch resistance and stiffness.
At first, the company used ¼” acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) for drawer faces, because it is a low-cost engineering plastic that is usually easy to machine and fabricate. However, it wasn’t the optimal choice for their applications. “The ABS heated up quickly, so we had to clean it up after routing; it also scratches and is not UV stable. We needed a better solution,” says Ryan Dodd, vice president of operations of 1st In Emergency Products.
Seaboard black HDPE is used in the manufacturing of cabinet drawer faces, equipment mounting face plates, radio face plates and fuse panels under the back seat. They chose the material because it is thicker, easily machined with their CNC router, corners are easily rounded, and will hold a screw firmly to achieve a finished look. Additionally, the black Seaboard doesn’t show dirt and matches the spray on bed liner, a protective coating applied to the cabinet and consoles that helps prevent moisture penetration, scratching and denting.
“We run the Seaboard through a CNC router or table saw without worrying about speed because the HDPE isn’t easily affected by heat like the ABS,” says Dodd. Then we clean up the edges quickly and easily with a hand router and it maintains its glossy finish.”
1st In Emergency Products ships cabinets ready to install to customers and upfitters across the United States and Canada. More information is available on the company’s website https://www.1stinproducts.com.