Delrin Material Properties Offer Strong, Versatile Plastic Alternative to Metal

By Protolabs
Delrin has been used for a stunning variety of parts, including guitar picks, left, and a surgical stapler, right.

When you work with us at Protolabs, you’ll be able to choose from hundreds of manufacturing materials that include various grades of thermoplastics, metals, and elastomers. Though you do have the option of supplying your own material for injection moulding projects, most of our customers opt for material from the variety of choices we carry.

Along these lines, when selecting a material, consider its properties, manufacturability characteristics, cosmetic appearance, and cost.

What is Delrin?

One of the more popular plastic material choices we offer for injection moulding and machining is Delrin acetal homopolymer (Polyoxymethylene POM).

Delrin works as an excellent replacement for metal because of its high-tensile strength, low-friction and high-wear resistance, creep and warp resistance, and overall durability and toughness. Delrin exhibits low moisture absorption and is chemically resistant to hydrocarbons, solvents, and neutral chemicals.

Delrin is Ideal for Industrial Applications

All of these properties make Delrin ideal for a range of industrial and mechanical applications. Parts exposed to a moist or wet environment, such as pump and valve components, are especially appropriate. Other common uses include gears, bearings, bushings, rollers, fittings, and electrical insulator parts.

For general reference purposes, here are some numbers in key categories for Delrin:

Material Tensile Strength Impact Strength Heat Deflection Elongation at Break
Delrin 40 - 150 Mpa 1.6 - 4.2 KJ/m2 80 - 150°C 10-40%



Much more detailed data and statistics can be found on our website. A data sheet for Delrin, available from our materials comparison guide, from supplier Plastics International, lists Delrin’s advantages:

  • Good dimensional stability
  • Excellent machinability
  • Superior impact and creep resistance
  • High fatigue endurance
  • High strength and stiffness properties
  • Chemical resistance to fuels and solvents
  • Low moisture absorption: Delrin can operate in wet environments with little effect on performance or dimensions
  • Good wear and abrasion properties - with its low coefficient of friction and hard and resilient surface, Delrin is the material of choice in many wear applications.
  • Natural grade is FDA, NSF, and USDA compliant

That data sheet, plus a data sheet for Delrin 577, include charts listing Delrin’s physical, mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties, which are also important elements to consider.

Two recent examples of companies we worked with that used Delrin include Opus KSD, which used the material for prototypes of its SubQ It! surgical tool, and Bog Street LLC, which used Delrin for its LEAP series of guitar picks (see photos).

For more manufacturing materials guidance, we also offer free CNC machining and injection moulding material selectors, which are pocket-sized, quick-reference guides to help you identify the right materials for your next project. These selectors list specific measurements on properties to ensure you have the most suitable material and process for your part’s application.


Materials Science is a closer look at manufacturing materials.