When shopping for the perfect work glove, one of the most important features you need is obviously superb hand protection. There are many levels of protection and different options that come within the work glove category. The following article will lay out some basics so that you can be more informed as you search for work gloves.
Glove Technologies and Selecting the Right Glove
Each type of work glove is useful for a particular situation, so it is important to fully understand your needs so that you are able to choose the correct glove. Three main types of work gloves are: coated seamless knit, polymer, and cut & sewn.
Coated Seamless Knit: This type of work glove is known for being built with superior dexterity, grip, as well as tactile dexterity. They typically have a supportive liner, a wristlet, and a coating that enhances grip on the fingers and palm.
Polymer: This type of work glove is suitable for general use applications and are especially known for superior liquid and chemical resistance. They also have a lining for added comfort and thick coating for increased all-around protection.
Cut and Sewn: These heavy duty gloves are constructed of leather as well as common fabrics. They have fabric reinforcements on the palm and rubber reinforcements on the fingers for heavy duty protection.
Work Glove Fiber Basics
Every glove is comprised of fibers. Fibers are found either in a very long continuous form called filaments or in shorter lengths called staple fibers. The filament form of the fibers are usually lined up, bundled and twisted to form a sort of yarn. Staple fibers are mechanically twisted to form a variety of sizes.
Staple fibers mean your glove will have great comfort as well as superior wicking properties. Filament fibers translate into gloves that offer higher tenacity.
The gauge of the fiber refers to the number of rows of stiches per inch. The higher the gauge, the less bulky and greater dexterity you’ll find in your glove.
The Glove Liner Base
Typically a type of polymer fiber is found in high tech work gloves. These fibers can, however, be transformed into many forms. In the work glove category, there are six different types of basic glove liners.
Dyneema Diamond: This liner provides unmatched comfort levels as well as a cool, non-irritating sensation that makes it seem as though you’re not even wearing gloves! This fiber is one of the most cost effective and has excellent durability.
Dyneema: This is one of the strongest glove fibers; 15 times stronger than steel! It offers thinness and flexibility as well as enhanced protection.HPPE: This glove fiber is most suitable for the toughest of environments because it is engineered with some of the highest levels of abrasion and chemical resistance, all while maintaining the comfort you desire.
Kevlar: This type of glove fiber protects against many hazards such as heat, cuts, and abrasions. It is lightweight and comfortable.
ACP Technology: This fiber is 100% silicone free and is economic, while delivering high protection performance.
Blended Yarns: These fibers are typically nylon, polyester, cotton, or acrylic. The ability to create these types of blended yarns, means that you are sure to find just the glove you need for your particular job.
Materials Used to Manufacture Work Gloves
The type of material used to manufacture work gloves is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing a glove. Your goal is to choose a glove material that will maximize the protection, dexterity, and comfort that you need for your job.
Synthetic Leather: This material is man-made and offers a glove that is soft, durable, tear resistance, and has high tensile strength.
Natural Leather: Natural leather comes from cow, deer, or pig and is either upper top grain or bottom split layer. The bottom split layer is thinner and more pliable than the higher quality top grain.
Fabric: There is a plethora of synthetic and natural fibers that are used in work glove manufacturing. Some add thermal layering, which offers protection from cold or hot temperatures. Others add Spandex, which enhances the glove’s flexibility.
Work Glove Coating Basics
A glove coating is used to improve the grip of a glove as well as increase the glove’s resistance to abrasions and punctures. Glove coatings also offer protection from liquids. There are five main coatings used on work gloves:
Nitrile: This is a thicker coating that delivers a great dry grip and excellent resistance.
Latex: This coating provides excellent grip in both dry and wet conditions in addition to puncture and abrasion resistance.
Neoprene: This coating is suitable for dry grip, but is particularly great for applications needing a wet grip, such as handling heavy oils, acids, grease or solvents.
Polyurethane: This coating is fairly thin, delivering excellent tactility and dexterity. It is suitable for dry grip situations an mild wet grip applications.
Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC): This coating is very durable and protective against oils and grease. However, it is does not provide the best tactile sensitivity, despite its flexibility.
Grip Technology in the Work Glove
In addition to the glove coating, there are other finishes that enhance the level of grip as well as abrasion resistance, listed below:
Smooth: A smooth finish will provide good dry grip and does not absorb liquids, keeping hands dry.
Microfinish: This finish is created by using latex or nitrile and filling it with countless tiny suction cups. These little suction cups create a vacuum that wicks liquid away from a particular object that is being handled. Therefore, it is suitable for wet and dirty applications.
Foam: This type of finish is designed to draw liquids away allowing for the user to handle items better in wet and dirty situations. The foam coating also adds grip in dry applications.
Pattern: Dots, blocks, and other palm coatings enhance the gloves grip and durability.
Crinkle: crinkle finishes found on many latex gloves allow liquid to disperse so that the user can have better handling in heavy duty wet applications.
Rough: This is a particularly economical finish, which offers cut resistance and suitable handling in wet and dry situations.
Sandy: This type of finish boosts abrasion and cut resistance and offers protection for wet and rugged conditions.
Raised Diamond: This finish is typically found on unsupported gloves and is usually used in food service industries.
Honeycomb: This finish is also used on unsupported gloves and adds an improved grip in dry and wet situations. This finish is commonly used in sanitation and maintenance applications.