A double sided tape has pressure-sensitive adhesive exposed on both sides, allowing two parts to be bonded together by the tape between them. A carrier that holds adhesive can range from a film as thin as a fraction of a millimetre up to a thick foam that helps damp vibrations. The carrier is the material that holds or “carries” the adhesive; in double coated tapes it separates the two adhesives. The carrier can be made of paper, plastic film, tissue or foam, and the type of carrier can be important for applications that need to withstand, as one example, the heat level of a paint-drying process.
Having a carrier in the middle enables two different adhesives to be applied for adhering dissimilar materials that require different bonding properties. Once the adhesive is applied to the carrier a liner is applied over one or both sides to protect the adhesive until the tape is applied.
Similarly, adhesives can meet specific needs from low-tack that allows for repositioning all the way up to a permanent bonding solutions. A double sided tape that has a carrier can be produced with the same adhesive on both sides, or with different adhesives to meet the bonding requirements of different substrates. The adhesive types generally are either rubber or acrylic formulations. They are different from transfer tapes which do not have a carrier. Double coated tapes normally involve die cutting the product into a shape to suit the specific application or manufacturing process.