Welcome to the great debate: nylon vs polycarbonate (PC). Both materials are widely used in a variety of industries for their strength and durability. But, which one should you choose?

In this article, we'll explore the strengths and weaknesses of each material, compare their costs and availability, as well as provide some insight into which applications they are best suited for. We'll also discuss some key factors to consider when making your decision so you can make an informed choice that meets your needs.

So let's dive in and discover which material is the best fit for you!

Overview of Nylon and Polycarbonate (PC)

Overview of Nylon and Polycarbonate (PC)

You're trying to decide between two materials, but don't know which one is the right option for you. Let's take a look at what these materials have to offer!

Nylon is a synthetic thermoplastic polymer that offers superior strength and durability—it's virtually indestructible! On the other hand, PC is a transparent, lightweight plastic with excellent heat resistance and chemical stability.

Both materials are ideal for projects requiring high impact resistance, durability, and flexibility. However, depending on your specific needs, one might be better suited than the other. So make sure to examine both options carefully before making your decision!

Strengths and Weaknesses of Nylon

You've got two tough materials to choose from, it's like trying to decide between a brick wall and an unbreakable forcefield.

Let's take a closer look at the strengths and weaknesses of nylon. Nylon is strong, lightweight, and flexible, making it an ideal choice for many applications. It also has excellent wear resistance, which makes it resistant to abrasion and corrosion, allowing it to last much longer than other materials.

On the downside, nylon can be difficult to machine due to its slippery nature and tends to absorb moisture, which can cause warping or cracking if not properly treated or maintained. Additionally, nylon is flammable, so care must be taken when working with it near any open flames or high temperatures.

Despite these drawbacks, nylon is still considered one of the most versatile plastics available for a variety of industrial uses.

Strengths and Weaknesses of Polycarbonate (PC)

With its superior heat-resistance and shatterproof properties, polycarbonate is the perfect material for extreme temperatures and rough conditions. This type of plastic is incredibly durable and can withstand pressures up to two hundred times greater than other plastics. It is also resistant to a variety of chemicals, making it an ideal choice for industrial applications.

PC's impressive strength comes with drawbacks as well; it can be brittle under certain conditions, and scratches easily. Additionally, its relatively high cost compared to other materials makes it prohibitive in many cases.

Despite these drawbacks, polycarbonate remains one of the most popular thermoplastics on the market due to its versatility and durability. Its ability to endure extreme temperatures make it an ideal choice for outdoor applications such as aircraft windows or sports safety equipment. Its optical clarity also makes it great for transparent products like computer screens or glazing in greenhouses.

Ultimately, polycarbonate's strengths outweigh its weaknesses and make it an excellent option for those seeking a reliable material that can handle tough conditions.

Cost Comparison

When it comes to cost, nylon and polycarbonate can vary widely depending on the application. Nylon is typically more economical than PC for small production runs since it's easier to produce. However, if you're looking at large-scale production, then polycarbonate can offer a much lower cost per part due to its high molding efficiency.

Additionally, PC is often less expensive in terms of raw materials when compared with nylon. Plus, there are additives which can be used with PC that could make it even more affordable for certain applications. Ultimately, both nylon and polycarbonate have their own costs associated with them which should be carefully considered before making a purchasing decision.


When it comes to availability, both nylon and polycarbonate offer a wide range of options, so you can find the right material for your specific application.

Nylon is available in several types, such as molded shapes, sheet stock and rods. It can also be customized according to your needs with various colors, textures and finishes.

Polycarbonate is available in many grades and thicknesses which makes it suitable for a variety of applications. It's also easy to work with because it can be heated or formed into whatever shape you like.

With both nylon and polycarbonate being readily available, you're sure to find the perfect material for any job without having to wait weeks on end. That means more freedom for you to complete projects quickly without sacrificing quality!

Applications for Nylon

Applications for Nylon

You'll find nylon is a great material for a wide range of applications, from small items to larger ones. It's highly durable and resistant to wear, making it an ideal choice for applications that require strength as well as flexibility.

Here are just four of the most popular uses for nylon:

  1. Producing clothing - Nylon is often used in the production of activewear such as athletic shorts, leggings, and jackets due to its breathability and moisture-wicking properties.
  2. Manufacturing automotive parts - Nylon is frequently used to make engine components, fuel lines, wheel hubs, and other parts due to its resistance to heat and chemicals.
  3. Creating medical instruments - Nylon is often employed in the creation of surgical tools like scissors and forceps thanks to its strength yet lightweight characteristics.
  4. Developing musical instrument strings - Its ability to produce consistent sound makes nylon one of the most popular materials for guitar strings, cello strings, bass strings, etc..

No matter what you need it for, you can count on nylon's reliability and versatility!

Applications for Polycarbonate (PC)

Applications for Polycarbonate (PC)

Now that we've discussed the many practical applications of nylon, let's turn our attention to polycarbonate (PC). PC is a thermoplastic polymer with several properties that make it extremely useful in various industries and products.

From automotive parts to medical devices, PC is being used for an ever-growing list of things. In the automotive industry, PC is often used for headlight lenses due to its high impact resistance and ability to block UV light. It's also used in interior components like dashboards and steering wheels as well as exterior components such as window frames and bumpers.

The aerospace industry also uses this material for its superior strength-to-weight ratio and heat resistance characteristics, making it ideal for aircraft windows and cabin dividers. Medical device manufacturers are utilizing PC for its durability when creating instruments such as endoscopes or X-ray shields because it can withstand harsh cleaning solutions without breaking down over time.

Ultimately, whatever your application may be, polycarbonate could be the perfect choice for your project.

Factors to Consider

When making a decision between nylon and polycarbonate, there are several factors to consider.

Temperature resistance is one of them; polycarbonate can perform in extreme temperatures that nylon cannot withstand.

Chemical resistance is another factor; while nylon is resistant to most chemicals, PC has even greater chemical resistance.

Ultimately, the best choice depends on the specific needs of the application.


Temperature can make or break your decision; for instance, if you're looking for a material to use outdoors, polycarbonate may be the better option as it can handle hot and cold temperatures more effectively than nylon.

With its superior thermal properties, PC is ideal for applications that require protection from extreme temperatures:

  • You'll never have to worry about your product warping or melting in the heat when using PC
  • It's perfect for outdoor signage that needs to stand up to the blazing sun
  • If you need a part that won't fail in below freezing conditions, PC is your go-to choice
  • And you don't have to sacrifice strength just because you want something with thermal stability - PC offers both!

The temperature of your environment should definitely factor into your decision when choosing between nylon and polycarbonate. So, consider all the possible scenarios and pick the material that best fits your needs - freedom awaits!

Chemical Resistance

With its superior chemical resistance, polycarbonate is the perfect material for applications that require protection from harsh chemicals and solvents. It has been tested to ensure it can withstand even extreme conditions, like those found in industrial settings.

In contrast, nylon is not as resistant to common chemicals and solvents, making it less suitable for these types of environments. The good news is that with a few simple steps, you can make sure your nylon components are well-protected against harmful substances. For instance, you can coat them with protective layers or use special cleaners designed specifically for nylon fabrics.

Overall, if you're looking for a material that offers reliable chemical resistance in tough conditions, then polycarbonate should be your go-to choice. Its resilience allows it to stand up to corrosive materials while still providing durability and flexibility. Plus, the added peace of mind knowing that your components are safe from hazardous materials makes polycarbonate an ideal solution for any application where protecting against harsh chemicals is a priority.


Although both materials have their own advantages and disadvantages, ultimately it's up to the individual to decide which is the right fit for them. Nylon and polycarbonate can be used in a variety of applications depending on the desired outcome.

Here's what you should consider when making your decision:

  • Nylon offers excellent abrasion resistance, superior strength, and good flexibility.
  • Polycarbonate is lightweight, impact-resistant, and highly durable.
  • Both nylon and polycarbonate are resistant to many chemicals including gasoline and oil.
  • Nylon can become brittle over time in certain temperatures while polycarbonate doesn't suffer from this issue.
  • Nylon can be dyed with various pigments whereas polycarbonate can't.

In sum, both materials provide great chemical resistance. If you need a material that is more flexible or one that allows for coloring, then nylon may be the best option for you. Ultimately, though, the choice between nylon and polycarbonate depends on your specific needs as well as personal preferences, so make sure to weigh all of your options carefully before making a decision!