Aircraft Maintenance Professionals are always looking for better and more efficient ways to complete their tasks.  Sometimes, in an effort to complete their tasks faster, they use items that were not designed for use in removal and damage to the underlying surfaces.

While there are currently many scraper blades on the market that are designed for adhesive removal, , not all materials are created equal.  Most of the blades currently on the market are made of three materials:  ABS, Phenolic, and Torlon.



Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene is a very tough, very durable thermoplastic used in a wide variety of applications. ABS is a common choice among other plastic production materials because of its durability, structural stability, and good corrosion, impact, chemical, and wear resistance.

ABS plastic is made when acrylonitrile and polystyrene monomers are polymerized with butadiene rubber to create acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS). This blending is typically accomplished using an emulsification process, wherein materials that would otherwise not mix are formulated into a cohesive single product (think milk, where fats, oil, and water do not separate out of solution but exist as a homogenous mixture)


Phenolic is a laminated plastic used in a variety of custom plastic components due to its high strength, resistance to solvents, dielectric strength, and many other features.

Phenolics are manufactured by impregnating layers of material with a phenolic resin, and then applying heat and pressure, which transforms these layers into a solid mass. The result is a thermoset that is dense, dimensionally stable, structurally strong, has low creep, and is an excellent insulator.




Torlon® is a high-strength, high-performance, melt-processable plastic material. It’s ability to perform under severe stress combined with its resistance to elevated temperatures makes it ideal for various applications across many industries.  Torlon (PAI) is recognized as being the highest-performing plastic that is melt-processable.

Polyamide-imides (PAIs) are thermoplastic amorphous polymers prepared by the condensation of an aromatic diamine, such as methylene diamine, and an anhydride, such as trimellitic acid chloride. PAIs have good mechanical, thermal, and chemical resistance, high strength, melt processability, and high heat capacity.

So, ABS is blended thermoplastic, Phenolic is impregnated plastic, and Torlon is a heat-treated, condensed thermoset.  Condensed thermoset materials are stronger, more resilient, and exhibit consistent performance without the risk of damaging the surfaces.

EnduroSharp® Torlon® aircraft maintenance tools were specifically designed by Performance Plastics, the Airforce Research Laboratory (ARL), and the University of Dayton Research Institute at Wright Patterson Air Force Base to safely and efficiently remove adhesives, sealants, and coatings while maintaining an effective edge and not damaging the underlying substrates.

For more information on Torlon® and/or EnduroSharp Torlon® Aircraft Maintenance Tools, please contact Aileen Crass, Product Marketing Manager at [email protected], or visit our website at


Resin compounds play a crucial role in various aerospace applications due to their lightweight, high-strength, and durable properties. They are commonly used in the aerospace industry for manufacturing components such as aircraft structures, interior components, propulsion systems, and more. Here are some key points about the use of resin compounds in aerospace applications:

  1. Composite Materials: Resin compounds are often used as matrix materials in composite structures. Composite materials are made by combining reinforcing fibers (such as carbon fibers, glass fibers, or aramid fibers) with a resin matrix. These materials provide a high strength-to-weight ratio, making them ideal for aerospace applications where weight savings are critical.
  2. Fiber Reinforced Polymers (FRP): In addition to carbon fibers, other types of fibers like glass and aramid are used in aerospace composites. Glass fiber reinforced polymers (GFRP) are used in applications that require good corrosion resistance, while aramid fiber reinforced polymers (AFRP) are known for their impact resistance.
  3. Thermosetting Resins: Epoxy resins are one of the most commonly used thermosetting resins in aerospace applications due to their excellent mechanical properties, high heat resistance, and low shrinkage during curing. They are often chosen for critical structural components.
  4. Thermoplastic Resins: Thermoplastic composites are gaining popularity in aerospace due to their improved impact resistance, damage tolerance, and recyclability. They can be reheated and reformed, allowing for potential repairs or reshaping of components.
  5. Adhesives and Bonding: Resin-based adhesives are used for bonding various components in aerospace manufacturing, including joining composite panels, attaching metal components, and creating strong bonds between dissimilar materials.
  6. Fire Resistance: Fire-resistant resins are essential for aerospace applications to ensure the safety of passengers and crew. Fire-resistant resins are often used in interior components, like cabin walls and flooring, to meet stringent safety standards.
  7. Repair and Maintenance: Resin-based materials are also used for repairing and maintaining aircraft and spacecraft structures. Composite repair patches and epoxy-based sealants can extend the life of aerospace components.
  8. Design Flexibility: Resin compounds offer design flexibility, allowing engineers to create complex shapes and optimized structures that might not be achievable with traditional materials.

It’s worth noting that the aerospace industry has stringent regulations and standards for the use of materials in aircraft and spacecraft. The choice of resin compound and its application must meet these requirements to ensure safety, reliability, and performance in various aerospace environments.

For more information on resin compounds and their uses in Aerospace Manufacturing, please contact Rich Reed, Vice President of Sales & Marketing at [email protected], or visit our website at

Sustainable aviation maintenance is a multi-disciplinary objective that seeks solutions to improve the environmental and societal impacts of air transportation.

Maintenance activities have environmental impacts including the production of waste and disposal of end-of-life parts. According to aviation experts, aircraft maintenance is of significant environmental impact and cannot be neglected. Corporate responsibility forces aircraft manufacturers and maintainers to take into account these impacts and develop some solutions to minimize the environmental impacts of the maintenance phase.

Maintenance professionals highlight the importance of safety and reliability in developing maintenance tasks and cycles. Manufacturers need to source efficient and practical solutions to meet the requirements of safety and reliability. But at the same time, the need to minimize life cycle costs while preventing or limiting harmful impacts to the environment. This goal can be achieved by defining objectives including making longer-life parts, utilizing reusable tools, and limiting harmful impacts on the environment during maintenance.

EnduroSharp® is a line of products used to repair and maintain aircraft structures that are reusable and resharpenable. The product line consists of non-metallic material removal tools that will not damage aircraft during the process of removing sealants, adhesives, and coatings. The EnduroSharp® nonmarring aircraft maintenance tools are made from Torlon®, a high-performance plastic that creates a durable tool that will hold a superior edge. Creating an effective tool for aircraft maintainers, that will not damage aircraft structures, like aluminum and composite allows your aircraft structures to last longer.

For more information on our EnduroSharp® Product Line contact Rich Reed, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, at (513) 321-8404 or [email protected].

Performance Plastics is pleased to announce that we have been awarded a General Services Administration (GSA) Schedule Contract with the federal government for our EnduroSharp®   Torlon® non-marring aircraft maintenance tools. The GSA is the centralized authority for the acquisition and management of federal government resources. GSA Schedule Contracts assist federal employees in purchasing products and services.

To be approved for a GSA contract, companies must go through a rigorous process of review that takes months, if not years. The requirements include that the company meet some basic standards of strength and reliability. It must have been in business for at least two years, must be able to demonstrate financial stability, must have successful past performance under its belt, and must be compliant with the Trade Agreements Act.

Additionally, a Dun & Bradstreet Open Ratings Past Performance Evaluation report must be done. This report is an in-depth review of a company’s past performance, which uses Dun & Bradstreet’s own data and analytic resources together with direct customer survey responses to compile a full picture.

Performance Plastics is proud to say that our proposal was approved and can now make our EnduroSharp®  tools available to the federal government’s various agencies and employees.

“We are thrilled to have received this contract with GSA and view it as an opportunity to expand our business into new, but not unfamiliar, areas,” said Rich Reed, VP of Sales & Marketing.  “PPL has supported federal projects for many years.  Through this GSA contract, we now can extend that support even further within the Government sector.”

Our offerings will now be available on the GSAAdvantage! federal online catalog, making them accessible to hundreds of federal customers, including federal and executive agencies, the Department of Defense, the government of the District of Columbia, government contractors authorized to spend federal dollars, and other institutions and organizations that support the federal government.



PEEK or polyetheretherketone belongs to a family of polymers called polyketones or iPAEKs.  This means that is it built from the following building blocks:

  • ARYL

PEEK is one of the highest performing thermoplastics in the world.  Compared to metals, PEEK based materials are very light weight, easily shaped, resistant to corrosion and have considerably higher specific strength (strength per unit weight).

PEEK is optimal for aerospace applications because although it is a thermoplastic, it boasts heat resistance, little to no reaction against harmful chemicals and radiation, and comparable tensile and load strength to that of titanium and steel while being many times lighter.

PEEK® does not offer merely two or three properties that mark it as the polymer of choice for aerospace/defense; it has a whole variety of them.  They include:

  • High heat resistance

Tests have shown that PEEK polymer has a continuous use temperature of 260°C (500°F). This can make it suitable for use in a wide range of thermally aggressive environments.  PEEK tolerates friction and resists wear in dynamic applications like thrust washers and seal rings.

  • Chemically unreactive

PEEK resists the damage that can be inflicted in chemically aggressive operational environments. It can resist jet fuel, hydraulic fluids, de-icers and insecticides used in the aerospace industry.  This holds true over wide ranges of pressure, temperature, and time.

  • Mechanically strong

PEEK offers excellent strength and stiffness over a wide temperature range.  PEEK-based composites have specific strength many times that of metals and alloys.  “Creep” refers to a material becoming permanently deformed over an extended period when under constant applied stress. “Fatigue” refers to the brittle failure of a material under a repeated cyclic loading.  PEEK has both high creep and fatigue resistance thanks to its semi-crystalline structure and has been shown to be more durable than many other polymers and some metals over a long and useful lifetime.

  • Difficult to ignite or burn

PEEK has excellent flammability performance.  It resists combustion up to almost 600°C.  When it can be made to burn at very high temperatures, it will not support combustion and it emits little smoke. This is one reason why PEEK is widely used in commercial aircraft.

Aerospace/defense part manufacturers now use PEEK as a way to improve the weight and durability of their parts.  PEEK is a standard high-performance plastics in the aerospace/defense industry applications.

Performance Plastics’ team of experienced engineers possess the expertise to design and manufacture technically challenging projects and offer complex solutions within the aerospace/defense industries.

For more information on how Performance Plastics can assist in your material selection challenges, please contact Rich Reed, VP Sales & Marketing at 513.321.8404 or [email protected].

Performance Plastics specializes in the precision injection molding of technically complicated parts in advanced materials, eliminating the need to machine.

High performance plastic materials offer ideal properties when it comes to durability. Resins like polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE/Teflon®) are known for their dielectric strength, low dissipation, chemical resistance, outstanding performance at elevated temperatures, and levels of coefficient friction. However, these unique properties can make molding some fluoropolymers quite difficult. Performance Plastics has found a way to offer the benefits of these materials by injection molding alternate fluoropolymers such as FEP and PFA.

At Performance Plastics, we are experts at precision injection molding. We have developed proprietary tool design software, processes and equipment enabling us to injection mold components having complex geometries made from challenging high-performance thermoplastic materials (PFA/FEP/PEEK®/PTFE/Teflon®) and highly loaded compounds. We utilize a unique combination of extensive material knowledge, mold flow analysis, a design system and process expertise to eliminate or minimize the need for secondary operations.

Switching from machining parts to injection molding parts can be very beneficial. Not only does injection molding help lower costs, but it also allows for highly efficient production, complexity in part design, and enhanced part strength. Injection molding produces uniformity, the ability to make millions of virtually identical parts.

Injection molding isn’t for every project, but it can be cost beneficial for applications producing more than 10,000 pieces of the same part year over year. At Performance Plastics, we serve a variety of industries, from medical & life science, aerospace & defense to diversified industrial.

To learn about how precision injection molding can replace machined parts, contact Rich Reed, our Vice President of Sales and Marketing, at (513) 321-8404 or [email protected].

EnduroSharp® has improved the way aerospace maintenance professionals remove sealants and adhesives from substrates and fasteners.  EnduroSharp® resharpenable, non-marring tools are made from Torlon®, a high strength polymer, creating a non-metallic blade tool that will not damage composite structures during use.

Many of our EnduroSharp® tools can be used in conjunction with a pneumatic tool.  A pneumatic tool is one that’s driven with the assistance of compressed air rather than electricity.  Pneumatic tools rely on air compressors to provide a burst of air to perform its operation. A pneumatic tool can operate indefinitely as long as the attached air compressor can deliver the required volume and pressure without interruption.

Pneumatic Tools are very strong air powered tools and provide the user with a tremendous amount of labor and time saving torque.

Pneumatic tools provide many advantages:

  • Main advantage is they are far less expensive than their electric alternatives.
  • Provide a degree of safety in wet areas where electric motors can be dangerous.
  • Lighter in weight than their electric counterparts.
  • Pneumatic tools can deliver large amounts of torque or operate for long durations of time.
  • More flexible than electric – nearly all air-driven tools use the same ¼” quick connect fittings.

Generally, pneumatic tools are smaller, more versatile, easy-to-use and safer than traditional electric tools.  Since pneumatic tools are usually lighter, the user is able to have better control and experience less fatigue and strain.  They are also able to withstand various elements such as dust, heat and water better than electric tools.

The EnduroSharp® Pneumatic Tool for Scraper Blades is just one of the many products offered in the EnduroSharp® Product line. Contact Rich Reed,  Vice President of Sales and Marketing, at (513) 321-8404 or [email protected], for more information.


EnduroSharp® has changed the way aerospace maintenance professionals remove sealants and adhesives from substrates and fasteners. EnduroSharp® tools are made from Torlon®, a high strength polymer, creating a non-metallic tool that will not damage composite structures during use. The EnduroSharp® lineup consists of a variety of scraper blades, gap blades, reamers, cutters, bits, and discs for removal of adhesives on aircrafts. The product line also includes a variety of kits containing a selection of parts and sizes.

Traditionally, aerospace maintenance professionals removed sealants and adhesives from  gaps utilizing solvents and/or abrasive scraper tools.  Solvents are very dangerous in that they may dissolve unintended materials, and produce hazardous fumes.  Abrasive scraper tools are often hard to control and may cause unintended substrate damage.

EnduroSharp® Torlon® Gap Filler Removal (GFRD) Discs are designed for use with a pneumatic tool. The tools provide aerospace maintenance professionals with an effective method of safely removing flexibilized epoxy gap materials as well as cutting or scoring thick elastomeric coatings without damaging composite substructures.

EnduroSharp® Torlon® Gap Filler Removal (GFRD) Discs are shipped 4 parts per box.

The EnduroSharp® Torlon® Gap Filler Removal Discs are just one of the many different items offered in the EnduroSharp® product line. Contact Rich Reed our Vice President of Sales and Marketing, at (513) 321-8404 or [email protected],  for more information on our EnduroSharp® kits and products.

EnduroSharp® has changed the way aerospace maintenance professionals remove sealants and adhesives from substrates and fasteners. EnduroSharp® resharpenable tools are made from Torlon®, a high strength polymer, creating a non-metallic blade tool that will not damage composite structures during use.

The lack of reliable and effective nonmetallic material removal tools available to maintainers drove the continued use of unapproved tools and/or methods for removing materials from aerospace vehicles. The use of metallic tools has resulted in damage to vehicles, both short term and long term, causing the need for expensive repairs and reduction in vehicle availability.

Because of this need, The University of Dayton Research Institute under contract to the Air Force Research Laboratory developed a series of nonmetallic material removal tools under the “EnduroSharp” trademark manufactured from Torlon thermoplastic manufactured by Solvay Engineered Plastics and produced by Performance Plastics of Cincinnati OH.

Attached is the published white paper outlining the development of the “EnduroSharp®” line of Torlon® non-metallic aircraft maintenance tools.  In this paper you will find:

  • Abstract
  • Background
  • Prototype Development Path
    • Gap Filler Removal Bits
    • Torlon Scraper Blades
    • Torlon Gap Blades
  • Results
  • Conclusions

To review the white paper in full, please click here.

EnduroSharp® Products are currently approved for use by numerous governmental and corporate defense organizations including the USAF, USMC, USN, USCG, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Dassault.

EnduroSharp® Products are now available as individual components, tools and consumables or as Aviation Kits.

For more information on the EnduroSharp® line or Torlon® Aircraft Maintenance Tools, please contact our Vice President of Sales and Marketing, at (513) 321-8404 or visit our website at



EnduroSharp(R) Gap Blades & Adapter

EnduroSharp® has changed the way aerospace maintenance professionals remove sealants and adhesives from substrates and fasteners. EnduroSharp® resharpenable tools are made from Torlon®, a high strength polymer, creating a non-metallic blade tool that will not damage composite structures during use.

Scraper blades are designed for use in larger areas where a large quantity of material needs to be removed. Made from a non-marring Torlon® material the blades are a quick, safe and effective method of removing sealants and adhesives from composite structures.

Gap blades are designed for use in smaller grooves and channels where scraper blades are too large.  With a multi head edge, gap blades offer the ability to eliminate materials from multiple surfaces of the seam.

Technicians often use a scraper blade in applications where a gap blade will deliver a quicker, cleaner result.  While the scraper blade offers one cutting edge, the gap blades offer three, allowing the removal of sealants and adhesives from the surfaces more completely.                                                   

The tools are designed to complement each other.  By using an adapter tool, both the scraper blades and gap blades can be used with the same handle.  This provides the technician the ability to switch the blades based on the progression in the removal process.

Using the adapter also allows for the application of flexible incremental skiving techniques when removing sealants and adhesives.  Incremental skiving involves the technique of removing subsequent thin layers of material to achieve a cleaner finish.  The technician can switch back and forth between the blades as needed.

The EnduroSharp® scraper and gap blades are just a few of the many products offered in the EnduroSharp® Product line. Contact Rich Reed for our Vice President of Sales and Marketing, at (513) 321-8404 or [email protected], more information on our EnduroSharp® kits and products.