by Cindy LeClair Cindy LeClair No Comments

TLARGI’s Oktoberfest Event A Huge Success

Vip Wins The TLARGI Oktoberfest Booth Competition With "Fear Factor" Theme

Each year The Los Angeles Rubber Group Inc (TLARGI) hosts an Oktoberfest celebration. The highlight of this event is the themed booths that members create.

Vip Rubber Booth Oktoberfest TLARGI 2019

This year the Vip team put together a “Fear Factor” themed booth complete with secret black boxes containing unidentified objects.

Guests were brave enough to try and guess what was in the boxes, and we got some pretty great reactions. Suprise, shock, and laughter filled the faces of our guests. Everyone had a lot of fun.

Vip was awarded first prize for their creative, fun and interactive booth.

Check out some of the great reactions to the booth.

TLARGI is a fantastic organization that helps to bring companies in the rubber industry together.

by Cindy LeClair Cindy LeClair No Comments

TPE vs. EPDM for Tough Shapes and Outdoor Environments

Compare TPE vs. EPDM for sealing and insulation. Thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) include TPV or thermoplastic vulcanizate for tough shapes and outdoor environments.


Thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) and ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM) rubber both provide sealing and insulation in outdoor environments. They can be molded into custom shapes or fabricated from sheets and extrusions made of sponge or solid materials. TPE and EPDM have many similar characteristics, including resistance to freshwater, saltwater, weather, ozone, and sunlight (UV). They also have good processing properties and support the use of adhesives. Pressure-sensitive adhesives (PSA) are used with EPDM. Hot melt adhesives such as 3M hot melt tape are used with TPEs.

Increasingly, thermoplastic elastomers are replacing EPDM rubber for hard-to-achieve shapes that are subject to specific temperature and application conditions. By comparing TPE vs. EPDM in terms of material properties, product designers and engineers can make the right choice. Depending on the application, materials that meet specific standards may be needed. Ease-of-processing and recyclability are also considerations. Plus, it helps to partner with an experienced provider of rubber manufacturing and plastic manufacturing services that can offer expert advice about which type of TPE to consider. 

TPE vs. EPDM: Properties and Comparisons

TPEs are blends of plastic and rubber materials that have both thermoplastic and elastomeric properties. That’s why they’re sometimes called thermoplastic rubber (TPR) instead. Like a thermoplastic, TPRs soften when heated but harden when cooled. Like an elastomer, they compress under stress but return to their original shape when this stress is released. Because there are different classes of thermoplastic rubbers, choosing a TPE or TPR also means selecting a specific type.

ISO 18064:2014 establishes six classes of TPEs based on their main ingredients.

  • Styrenic block copolymers, TPS (TPE-s)
  • Thermoplastic polyolefinelastomers, TPO (TPE-o)
  • Thermoplastic Vulcanizates, TPV (TPE-v or TPV)
  • Thermoplastic polyurethanes, TPU (TPU)
  • Thermoplastic copolyester, TPC (TPE-E)
  • Thermoplastic polyamides, TPA (TPE-A)
  • Not classified thermoplastic elastomers, TPZ

TPEs are available in grades that can meet FDA, NSF, RoHS, UL 94, and other industry standards and regulatory requirements. EPDM also comes in grades that can meet standards and requirements, but EPDM rubber generally lacks the robust options of thermoplastic elastomers. Plus, EPDM can be vulcanized only once and is more labor-intensive to process. By contrast, TPEs can be recycled back into production.    

TPEs support a vibrant array of color matching options. EPDM rubber is available in fewer colors but provides greater abrasion resistance. EPDM also has a higher heat resistance than thermoplastic elastomers (160°C vs. 100°C). Compared to EPDM, however, TPEs offer greater design flexibility and lower fabrication costs for hard-to-achieve shapes. TPEs are also available in a wide array of hardness options (durometer) with good compression set.

Thermoplastic vulcanizate (TPV), a type of TPE, is especially notable because of its excellent low-temperature performance and resistance to oil and flex-fatigue. EPDM rubber can resist colder outdoor temperatures but won’t withstand petroleum products and doesn’t offer flex-fatigue resistance. In addition to industrial seals, TPVs are used in the automotive, HVAC, appliance, and building and construction industries.    

In the automotive industry, applications include hose coatings, gaskets, window gaskets, vibration absorbents, and components of firing mechanisms. With architecture and construction, these materials are used for ceiling and floor decoration as well as for window glazing profiles. Other applications include office equipment and elastomeric commodities in the medical and food sectors.     

TPE vs. EPDM: Make the Right Choice

Are you comparing TPE vs. EPDM for your next project? Vip Rubber & Plastic can help you with material selection, including which type of thermoplastic rubber to use. We can provide you with the sheets and extrusions that you need and can cut or mold products for you. You’ll like our custom compounding services, too.  Click here to request a quote, or contact us to learn more about the advantages of TPEs like TPV.  

by VIP Rubber & Plastic VIP Rubber & Plastic No Comments

Dock Bumpers, Rubrails, and Dock Edging

Dock bumpers, rubrails and dock edging from Vip Rubber & Plastic help to protect and preserve your boat’s finish. These vinyl bumpers are white in color and made of a pre-dyed, heavy-duty, PVC plastic that won’t mar or mark the hull of your watercraft. Vip’s marine bumpers also offer excellent shock absorption for protecting not just your boat, but the dock itself. They resist sunlight and fungi, too.

Rubrails for Shock Absorption and Environmental Resistance

By absorbing energy from low-speed impacts, rubrails help keep your boat on the water instead of at the repair shop. These dock bumpers and dock edging have sturdy internal ribs for structural support and their P-shaped design supports ease-of-attachment. The benefits don’t end there either. Importantly, these vinyl rubrails retain their appearance and performance in marine environments.

Vip’s rubrails, dock bumpers and dock edging are made of a marine-grade compound with a special additive that inhibits the growth of fungi, organisms that can cause staining or discoloration. This vinyl material also includes an additive that imparts resistance to ultraviolet (UV) light, which is found in the sun’s rays. Without adequate UV resistance, PVC plastics can crack and exhibit a decrease in impact resistance. They can also lose their gloss, appear chalky, and exhibit “sunburn” or discoloration.

How to Buy Dock Bumpers and Dock Edging

Vip Rubber & Plastic sells PVC rubrails, dock bumpers, and dock edging in 10-ft. lengths that are packed 10 to a box. The minimum order quantity (MOQ) is 1,000 ft. and the lead time is one week for the P-shape rubrail that we have in stock. As always, we can custom manufacture any other shape you need. When requested, we will review the presented profile to adequately assess the time required to build the tool and run the first article. Click here to request a quote.

There is no color matching charge for white PVC dock bumpers, but we cannot combine colors for quantity pricing since each color requires its own setup. Our current product is the only style in-stock, but  Vip can create any shape or style that you need. We love doing both standard and custom jobs to meet your needs because that’s who we are. If you’re interested in other styles of marine bumpers, please contact us.

by Vip Rubber & Plastic Vip Rubber & Plastic No Comments

Vip Nominated For Orange County Family Business Of The Year Award

OC Business Journal Nominates Vip Rubber for family business of the yearFamily Business of the Year Nomination

Since 1961, VIP Rubber and Plastic has been providing customers with more than just gasket cutting and splicing. As a family-owned business, we take pride in all that we do. Our founder, Howard Vipperman, Sr., and his wife, Bernardyne Vipperman, were partners who treated customers like friends and delivered the best possible product at the best possible price. 

Bernardyne Campana and Cindy LeClair OCBJ Family Business AwardRecently, we were nominated by the Orange County Business Journal as the top family-owned businesses in Orange County, California. Deena (Bernardyne) Campana, our company’s new president, was joined by Vice President of Marketing Cindy LeClair, granddaughter of Howard Vipperman Sr., at the awards ceremony.

We thank the OCBJ for this prestigious nomination.

by Vip Rubber & Plastic Vip Rubber & Plastic No Comments

Nevada’s KOLO Channel 8 Features Vip Rubber & Plastic

Made in Nevada

Kolo Channel 8 Features Vip Rubber and Plastic Minden Nevada

Vip Rubber and Plastic’s manufacturing facility in Minden, Nevada is also capturing headlines, as a recent profile on the website for KOLO Channel 8 ABC shows. The Nevada plant makes 48,000 pounds of rubber bumpers a year for the shopping carts used at Costco, Home Depot, and many other stores.

Would you like to learn more about our family-owned business? Explore VIP’s website to learn more our history and how we’re prepared for an exciting future. To request a quote or for additional information, please contact us.

by VIP Rubber & Plastic VIP Rubber & Plastic No Comments

Nuclear Gasket Case Study

Fabricating a nuclear gasket requires skill, speed, and a can-do attitude. When Vip Rubber and Plastic Nuclear Gasketa nuclear power company needed a spliced gasket quickly, Vip Rubber and Plastic answered the call. This request for assistance came during our plant shutdown at the height of the holiday season, but that didn’t stop our family-owned business from meeting a customer’s urgent need.

Nuclear Gasket Needed Now

Vip Rubber and Plastic’s plant in Orange County, California was closed for Christmas when Tom LeClair, Vice President of Sales, received a phone call at home. As the caller explained, a nuclear generating station in the southeastern United States urgently needed a new gasket. Tom reviewed the requirements, confirmed that Vip could deliver quickly, and trusted in our production team.

Vip’s hard-working employees were ready to enjoy a week of rest but fired-up the plant and got to work. Our Rubber Extrusion Manager led the crew of four that produced the nuclear gasket. Another manager spliced the gasket himself. When the custom gasket was complete, the customer sent a car to pick it up and take it to the airport for shipment to the nuclear generating station.

The elapsed time between the call to Tom LeClair and the customer pickup was just 12 hours. Vip prizes this accomplishment and the teamwork that was needed to meet this tight timetable. Our holiday celebrations were especially happy that year, and the time that employees enjoyed with their families must have been even sweeter.  If you are a defense company looking for rubber or plastic products, give us a call!

by VIP Rubber & Plastic VIP Rubber & Plastic No Comments

Silicone vs. Neoprene Rubber in Defense and Aerospace

What you need to know about silicone vs. Neoprene rubber for demanding applications.

Silicone and polychloroprene (also known as Neoprene) rubber resist ozone, oxygen, water and weather. They’re supplied as Silicone Sheet Rubbersheets and extrusions, which often are fabricated into seals, and are also molded into parts. These synthetic elastomers have many similar properties, but silicone and Neoprene rubber also have one important difference. Silicone has a broader temperature resistance which allows it to seal and insulate against extreme heat while remaining flexible at colder temperatures.

By understanding the comparative advantages and disadvantages of each type of elastomer, engineers can make the right choice during compound selection. Yet it’s also critical to consider material costs and availability. In addition to environmental and chemical resistance, buyers may need custom compounding and shorter lead times. Commodity rubber is fine for some applications, but aerospace and defense may need grades that meet specifications such as A-A-59588.

Environmental and Chemical Resistance

Silicone supports a wider range of temperatures and has better compression set, but Neoprene offers higher abrasion resistance and tensile strength. The table below describes some common material properties for each elastomer for comparing silicone vs. neoprene rubber.

Silicone Polychloroprene (Neoprene)
Temperature Range -100° to 450° F -40° C to 230° F (Dry Heat Only)
Compression Set Excellent Good
Weather Resistance Excellent Good
Abrasion Resistance Poor Good

Silicone and Neoprene resist oils and greases, but silicone is also recommended for elevated temperature applications. Neither elastomer can withstand hydrocarbon fuels such as gasoline or diesel. Neoprene rubber is a good choice for some refrigerants.

Industries and Applications

Polychloroprene (Neoprene) is used in fluid sealing, refrigeration sealing, and in industries such as automotive, mass transit, construction, and defense. Examples of Neoprene products include door and window seals, O-rings, washers, bearing pads, vibration mounts, shock absorbers, and marine gaskets. With its good physical toughness and mechanical strength, Neoprene offers a good balance of performance properties.

Silicone is used in door and window seals, weather seals, and in appliances and electronics. This synthetic rubber is also used in high voltage insulation, outdoor cable protection, HVAC drains, and fluid transfer. Silicone has excellent aging properties in sunlight. Industries that use silicone products include mass transit, food service, healthcare, retail, automotive, construction, and defense.

Special Considerations for Silicone vs. Neoprene Rubber

Silicone is in short supply globally, but that’s no reason to select the wrong material when you’re comparing silicone vs. Neoprene rubber. By partnering with the right supplier, you can get the right silicone, Neoprene, or other elastomer that you need. For example, VIP Rubber supplies a 30-durometer silicone that meets the demanding requirements of the A-A-59588 3B specification, which superseded ZZ-R-765.

For defense and aerospace manufacturers, the 3B standard is especially important because it’s one of only two A-A-59588 classes that require flex-fatigue resistance – a measure of an elastomer’s ability to withstand repeated flexing or bending. Unlike a commodity silicone, this specialized elastomer is superior. To learn more, contact Vip Rubber.

by Cindy LeClair Cindy LeClair 2 Comments

Our Succession Plan – An Exciting Future

Vip Rubber and Plastic Announces Retirements and 3rd Generation Succession

  • Bernardyne Campana named President of Vip Rubber and Plastic.
  • Albert Perez named Vice President of Aerospace
  • Cindy LeClair named Vice President of Marketing.
  • Martin Perez named Technical Expert
  • Howard Vipperman to step down as President and will continue to serve as Chairman of the Board

Vip Rubber and Plastic, a La Habra, CA based, and family-owned manufacturer of quality rubber and plastic parts, announced today that the current President Howard Vipperman is stepping down to usher in the third generation of the Vipperman family for continued growth.  Vip was founded in 1961 by the patriarch of the family, also named Howard Vipperman (Sr.) and his wife Bernardyne.  Having moved into the role of President in 1979, Howard is no stranger to generational change.

Howard says, “We have been working towards succession for the better part of 10 years and it is clear that the next generation is ready to go. I am pulling back from the day to day operations of Vip but remain a resource and mentor to all.” According to Howard, he will actively work on machinery acquisition, and is available for consultation at any time.

Howard will remain the Chairman of the Board and mentor as the third generation settles into their roles.  This will facilitate a smooth transition and as Vip Rubber and Plastic continues its growth as well as its outstanding service to customers.  In an increasingly complex business environment, it is extremely difficult for family-owned companies to reach third generation leadership. Vip’s succession plan was intended and executed to create the next generation leaders as well as make the transition as seamless as possible for both customers and employees.

Bernardyne Campana, Howard and Kathy’s niece, has assumed the role of President as Howard steps back. Bernardyne holds two degrees in mathematics and a Masters of Business Administration with honors from University California Irvine.  She is also the creator of the custom Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software system that is used company-wide.

In taking over as President, Bernardyne is keenly aware of the responsibility for both Vip Rubber and Plastic’s customer base as well as its 200 plus employees and their families.  She views the transition as a legacy to the traditions set forth by the company’s founders that continue through today.

“I have worked very hard to prepare for this position and have been working towards it quite steadily for over ten years, and we are completely on track with our 10 year vision and plan.” said Bernardyne . “But it isn’t just me, I have brilliant people around me that have been contributing to our success for many years.  Our people are our strength and together we will reach new heights.  We have incredibly good relationships with our customers and suppliers as well and this is a hallmark of Vip.  We value the relationships that we have and together with all interested parties, we will be successful.”

While continuing to serve its commercial markets and client base, Vip Rubber and Plastic has moved into new and challenging markets such as aerospace, where the company’s market share is expected to grow extensively.

In regards to the aerospace growth, Bernardyne says “We will all work to bring this to the next level and beyond.  We are in an extremely good position right now and I expect for our sales to increase dramatically in the aerospace sector. Our job going forward will be to increase sales and manage our growth.  Our production team has shown time and time again that if we have it, they can ship it.”

Additional third generation changes include Albert Perez as the Vice President of Aerospace for Vip Rubber and Plastics and has been an important part of Vip’s growth for over 25 years.  He started in Customer Service and later moved to sales in the Southern California region.  Albert has worked in aerospace for the last 10 years and has been a significant force in Vip’s evolution to ISO and AS9100.  He has worked with production to implement the procedures for creating perfect aircraft parts and Vip’s excellent Customer Service including on-time delivery performance.


Cindy LeClair, granddaughter of founder Howard Vipperman Sr., is in the role of Vice President of Marketing.  Cindy has piloted the company’s marketing efforts, developing a brand new website for the company, aimed at reaching new customers and improving the company’s online and digital presence.  Cindy has been with the company for almost 10 years, and carries a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications from Chapman University.

“I am so excited to be a part of this company, having the privilege to help keep this company strong. We all have a deep love for what we do, and for our customers,” said Cindy. “My role in marketing will be to advance our visibility online, and help customers via our website and other avenues. We want to meet our customer’s needs by evolving with the global increase in online activity. I will work to meet the needs of our customers in all areas, always making sure our customers feel like family.”


Cindy believes the second generation has done an excellent job strengthening this company for 58 years. “They have much to teach and are imparting their knowledge onto us in many ways. I am so grateful to partner with the second generation, helping us to be successful for another 58 years and beyond.”


In further changes, Martin Perez has been named Technical Director for Vip Rubber and Plastics.  In relating to his new role Martin stated:


“We have a great team here at Vip that has laid a great foundation.  Our ability to work together has help us meet many challenges in manufacturing.  Custom manufacturing relies heavily on technical experience to provide quality materials that can be processed and meet end use applications.  I am looking forward to continuing working with the new and experienced team members to keep Vip Rubber’s innovations going. Our customers are changing and we need to change with them.”


As the third generation of the Vipperman family takes on the challenges of today’s business climate, many other second and third generation family members will remain in critical roles to allow the company to continue to provide their customers with the service they have come to expect.


Kathy will remain as CFO and Tom LeClair will stay on as Vice President of Sales. Dean Gillespie will stay on as Vice President of Technical Sales. Additionally, Lisa Perez will continue in Accounts Receivable and Brent Westbrook will continue as Sales Manager. Peter Joneleit will continue in outside sales for Aerospace, local accounts in the LA area as well as international accounts. Peter, who is Howard’s son in law is excited about the future, “I am encouraged by our growth in capability with complex aircraft parts and new partnership with Boeing.  I would like to see this develop significantly in the near future and  also continue to support commercial manufacturing as well.”


Peter expressed his gratitude by saying “The second generation was a tremendous time of growth for Vip with all-star leadership by people like Howard, Kathy, Tom, and Dean.  The next generation also has its budding stars within the family like Bernardyne, Albert, Cindy and Martin (our chemist). It’s definitely a big transition but the new generation already has many years of experience. We have, and will, continue to benefit from wisdom from the previous generation.  As we break sales records regularly, the future is looking bright for the new generation at Vip.”


About Vip Rubber and Plastic

Vip Rubber and Plastic is a 58-year-old company founded in 1961.  The company produces rubber and plastic parts for industries including aerospace, agriculture, automotive, construction, energy, mass transit, medical and military as well as extensive custom builds and applications.  Based in La Habra, CA, the company operates a facility in Minden, NV and today employs over 200 people.  Vip Rubber and Plastic’s experience extends beyond manufacturing with quality certification capabilities, excellent customer service and an on-site lab with custom compounding capabilities.  Vip Rubber and Plastic parts are used by industries throughout the world and the company considers its market strength and growth to be a direct result of their committed and family managed operation.

by Cindy LeClair Cindy LeClair No Comments

Rubber Sheet Price List

Need fast pricing? Our rubber sheet price list can help.

As most of you know, we are a custom manufacturer, which means we don’t stock items to sell off the shelf.  Our manufacturing begins when our customers place an order for their unique item. Pricing is almost always different because shapes, profiles, and sizes are almost always different!

However, when it comes to rubber sheet, there are some standard sizes, materials, and durometers. This makes it easier and faster to quote these items, so you can get pricing immediately. We have created a price list to help you find what you need right away.

The rubber sheet price list is updated on a yearly basis and includes standard lengths with the most common widths and durometers. Almost every material is priced, including spec materials. Of course, if you need something you don’t see on the price list, we are just a phone call away.

Take a look at the 2019 Rubber Sheet Price List.

Once you find what you need, just give us a call to order 800-722-4847 or find your support team.

Need something custom? No problem, request a custom quote.

We look forward to working with you.