top of page

Thermoplastic Numbers

Thermoplastic numbers may seem like an obscure topic, but these markings play a vital role in our daily lives. From roadways, industrial settings, and playgrounds. Thermoplastic numbers are all around us, silently ensuring safety and efficiency.


New thermoplastic numbers

Thermoplastic Playground marking numbers


What are Thermoplastic Numbers?

Thermoplastic numbers, at first glance, may appear as simple markings, but their composition and versatility make them far more than meets the eye. These unique markings are crafted from a specialized type of plastic that possesses a remarkable property: it turns pliable when subjected to heat and then solidifies as it cools. This property is at the heart of what makes thermoplastic numbers an invaluable tool for marking and enhancing various outdoor spaces.


The pliability of thermoplastic material under heat serves as a crucial advantage in the manufacturing process. When heated to the right temperature, the thermoplastic substance transforms into a semi-liquid state, allowing it to be expertly applied to a wide array of surfaces. This application process, akin to painting, permits precision and creativity in design, resulting in crisp, well-defined numbers, symbols, and just about anything else you can think of.


How are they made?

  1. Material Preparation: The process begins with the preparation of the thermoplastic material itself. High-quality thermoplastic pellets are selected, which often consist of a base polymer such as polyethylene or polypropylene. These pellets may also contain additives like pigments for coloration and reflective beads for improved visibility, especially in low-light conditions.

  2. Heating and Mixing: The selected thermoplastic pellets are heated in a specialized melting kettle or boiler. This heating process transforms the solid pellets into a molten, viscous liquid. During this stage, pigments and reflective beads are added to achieve the desired color and reflective properties.

  3. Application: Once the thermoplastic mixture reaches the right consistency and temperature, it is ready for application. Skilled technicians use various methods to apply the molten thermoplastic to the target surface. This can be done manually, with stencils and templates for precision, or using machine applicators for larger projects.

  4. Cooling and Solidification: As the hot thermoplastic is applied to the surface, it quickly begins to cool and solidify upon contact. This rapid cooling process ensures that the thermoplastic adheres firmly to the surface, creating a strong bond.

  5. Cutting and Shaping: For thermoplastic numbers and markings that require intricate designs, numbers, or symbols, they are often cut or shaped during the cooling phase. Specialized cutting equipment or stencils are used to achieve precise shapes and designs.

  6. Quality Control: Quality control checks are essential at every stage of the manufacturing process. Technicians inspect the markings for accuracy, uniformity, and adhesion. Any imperfections or inconsistencies are addressed promptly.

  7. Reflective Properties Enhancement: To enhance visibility, especially at night, additional reflective glass beads or elements are often embedded into the surface of the thermoplastic while it is still hot. These beads reflect light from vehicle headlights or other sources, making the markings highly visible in low-light conditions.

  8. Packaging and Shipping: Once the thermoplastic numbers and markings have cooled and passed quality checks, they are ready for packaging. They are typically packaged in rolls or sheets for easy transportation to the installation site.


Thermoplastic number and letters

So why choose thermoplastic?

The selection of the right material for markings is a crucial decision, as it directly impacts visibility, durability, and overall effectiveness. Thermoplastic has emerged as a popular and practical choice for various marking applications due to several compelling reasons:


Durability: Thermoplastic markings are renowned for their exceptional durability. When applied correctly, they can withstand the test of time, enduring the harshest weather conditions, heavy traffic loads, and exposure to UV rays. Unlike traditional paint, which tends to fade, chip, or peel over time, thermoplastic remains steadfast, maintaining its clarity and functionality.


Visibility: The visibility of markings is paramount, especially in contexts where safety and guidance are essential. Thermoplastic markings offer superior visibility due to their reflective properties. Reflective beads embedded within the thermoplastic material bounce back light, making markings highly visible, even in low-light or nighttime conditions. This enhances safety and ensures that information and guidance remain clear and legible.


Customization: Thermoplastic is a versatile material that can be easily customized to suit specific requirements. Markings can be tailored in terms of size, shape, color, and design. This flexibility allows for the creation of markings that align with branding, safety standards, or aesthetic preferences. Whether it's road signs, playground markings, or industrial floor markings, thermoplastic can adapt to various needs.


Environmental Considerations: In an era of increasing environmental awareness, thermoplastic markings offer eco-friendly advantages. They have a lower carbon footprint compared to certain alternative marking methods, such as solvent-based paints. The application process generates minimal waste, and the longevity of thermoplastic reduces the frequency of replacements, further contributing to sustainability.


Quick Application and Rapid Solidification: Thermoplastic markings can be applied relatively quickly, reducing downtime during installation. The material becomes pliable when heated and solidifies rapidly as it cools, ensuring that markings adhere firmly to the surface. This expedited process minimizes disruptions, making it suitable for high-traffic areas like roads or facilities that require quick turnaround times.


Low Maintenance Requirements: Thermoplastic markings demand minimal maintenance over their lifespan. Their robust nature means they are less prone to damage, reducing the need for frequent touch-ups or replacements. This low maintenance requirement translates to cost savings in the long run, making thermoplastic a cost-effective choice.


Safety: Thermoplastic markings contribute to safety in various contexts. On roadways, they enhance driver awareness, guiding them with clear lane markings and traffic signs. In industrial settings, they indicate safe walkways and hazard zones, reducing the risk of accidents. In playgrounds and public areas, they promote safety by defining play zones and alerting individuals to potential hazards.


Compliance with Regulations: Thermoplastic markings are engineered to meet stringent safety and regulatory standards. Whether it's road markings adhering to traffic regulations or playground markings designed for child safety, thermoplastic materials are manufactured to ensure compliance and adherence to guidelines.



white thermoplastic maze design

Application and Usage

Thermoplastic numbers find extensive applications and usage across various sectors, thanks to their durability, visibility, and versatility. They serve multiple purposes, from enhancing safety to aiding navigation and education.


We have been using thermoplastic playground markings for over a decade, and will continue to be a trusted part of our work and designs for years to come.


Road Markings: Thermoplastic numbers are commonly employed on roadways for clear and visible lane markings, route numbers, and direction indicators. These markings guide drivers, improve traffic flow, and enhance road safety by providing essential information.


Playground Markings: In educational and recreational settings such as school playgrounds, thermoplastic numbers take the form of educational aids. They help children learn and practice numeracy skills, including counting, addition, and subtraction, in a fun and interactive way.



Colourful thermoplastic playground markings


Safety Markings: Thermoplastic numbers play a pivotal role in promoting safety within industrial and commercial environments. They are used to designate safe walkways, indicate hazardous zones, and provide clear instructions to workers, helping reduce accidents and ensure compliance with safety regulations


Sports Facilities: Thermoplastic numbers are employed in sports arenas, courts, and tracks to mark out boundaries, player positions, and scoring areas. Their vivid colors and durability make them ideal for outdoor sports applications.



Multi court 2 thermoplastic design

Multi Court 2

Multi courts can be installed in the colour of your choice. Get in touch for a bespoke size to fit your playground

30 x 15m












Pages you may find useful -

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page