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Nylon vs. Vinyl

Click to ExpandNylon-vs-Vinyl

When selecting materials for various applications, nylon and vinyl are often compared due to their unique properties and characteristics. Both are widely used in different industries but have differences that make them suitable for specific purposes.

Here’s a comprehensive comparison of nylon and vinyl in terms of their properties and applications:

Feature 1: Strength and Durability

Nylon is known for its high tensile strength and toughness. Thus, it can withstand heavy loads, impacts, and harsh environmental conditions without losing structural integrity. On the other hand, vinyl is relatively softer and less durable.

Feature 2: Flexibility

Vinyl is known for its flexibility and ease of processing. It is suitable for applications requiring softness and pliability because it can be easily molded and shaped into various forms. Meanwhile, nylon is relatively less pliable. Therefore, additional processing or additives may be required to achieve the desired flexibility for certain applications.

Feature 3: Moisture Resistance

Nylon is highly moisture resistant, making it ideal for applications where moisture or humidity is a concern. In addition, it is durable and does not degrade easily when exposed to prolonged moisture, making it suitable for outdoor or high-humidity environments. Vinyl offers full water resistance either inside or outside of the vinyl application.

Feature 4: UV Resistance

Nylon is recognized for its impressive UV resistance, making it an excellent choice for outdoor applications. It can endure the effects of UV radiation without deteriorating. Conversely, vinyl may weaken or lose its properties when exposed to extended periods of sunlight.

Feature 5: Chemical Resistance

Nylon is chemically resistant and suitable for applications with expected exposure to solvents, oils, and chemicals. It is ideal for industrial, automotive, and consumer goods. On the other hand, vinyl may lack the same level of chemical resistance, making it prone to damage or degradation in certain chemical environments.

Feature 6: Cost

Due to higher production costs and specialized processing, nylon is typically pricier than vinyl. However, its strength, durability, and unique properties can offset the cost in performance-driven applications. Meanwhile, vinyl is generally more affordable due to simpler processing and lower production costs.

Feature 7: Applications

The choice of materials in different applications is vital as it directly impacts the end product’s performance, durability, and cost-effectiveness. For example, the selection of either nylon or vinyl can significantly affect the functionality and success of the final product in its intended use.

Here are the common application of nylons:

  • Automotive parts: engine covers, fuel lines, gears, bearings
  • Industrial components: conveyor belts, gears, rollers, seals
  • Consumer goods: sports equipment, zippers, toothbrush bristles, tool/appliance handles
  • Outdoor gear: backpacks, tents, sleeping bags, ropes
  • Textile industry: stockings, pantyhose, apparel, carpet fibers
  • Medical devices: catheters, surgical sutures, prosthetics
  • Sports and recreation: fishing lines, tennis strings, kayak hulls
  • Aerospace: aircraft components, such as bearings, gears, and structural parts
  • Electronics: connectors, housings, insulators

Meanwhile, vinyl is most suitable for the following applications:

  • Automotive interiors: dashboards, door panels, seat covers
  • Packaging: blister packs, clamshell packaging, shrink wrap, indoor wire rack covers, printed table covers
  • Signage: banners, decals, stickers
  • Electrical cables: insulation, sheathing
  • Flooring: vinyl tiles, vinyl sheets, vinyl planks for residential and commercial flooring
  • Medical and healthcare: IV tubing, medical bags, gloves, tubing for oxygen masks, drop on dust covers, shower and cubicle curtains
  • Upholstery: furniture upholstery, automotive upholstery
  • Toys and novelties: dolls, action figures, inflatable toys, chair caps
  • Marine: boat seating, marine flooring, boat covers

Gary Manufacturing: Your Reliable Provider of Vinyl, Nylon, and Fabric Products

Looking for top-quality vinyl, nylon, and fabric products? At Gary Manufacturing, excellence in manufacturing and generations of quality meet! With over 60 years of experience, our commitment to exceptional customer service, unbeatable production standards, and multi-generational employee support are unmatched. Moreover, all our products are proudly made in the USA, ensuring the highest quality and reliability.

Contact us today to discuss your unique needs and experience working with a trusted industry leader.

Barrier Curtains: Our New Normal

As COVID-19 shut down many businesses across the globe, all sectors were forced to adapt and develop systems to safely open when they were able. One modification that has allowed businesses to safely serve their customers is using vinyl curtains, often clear, to serve as a physical barrier.  As a leader in USAmade curtain manufacturing, Gary Manufacturing has become a go-to source for innovative ways to produce clear vinyl curtains that may be hung in a variety of settings.

Restaurants, schools, and business settings use our clear barrier curtains to divide spaces and restrict the transmission of virus containing respiratory droplets and particles. Utilizing these curtains adds a measure of safety for both patrons and staff. A large clear vinyl barrier curtain allows any space to be divided enough to provide safety while also allowing visibility. Our 6-gauge crystal clear vinyl makes for an inexpensive solution to many businesses facing closure if they cannot find ways to adjust during this time.

Hospitals and institutional settings use our opaque barrier curtains to provide privacy between patients, allowing them to feel safe and comfortable. Our Sure-Chek Linen by Herculite is the perfect material for this as it already offers antibacterial and antimicrobial protection. Gary Manufacturing stocks six colors of the Sure-Chek Linen allowing for coordination with any color scheme.

Barrier curtains are being used in a variety of industries; however, these businesses still need meet building codes for safety. Our vinyl curtains are inherently fire retardant, making them an excellent choice for safe reopening.

Other locations prefer to offer fabric instead of vinyl.  Gary Manufacturing also offers multiple fabrics that will fit your needs: 210 Denier Nylon, Poplin, and Premier fabrics are excellent choices to create physical barriers and come in a variety of colors.

Now as the COVID vaccine becomes more available, many states are scaling back their lockdown restrictions. More businesses are opening their doors and need to find products to help them create safe spaces while still meeting local and federal safety regulations. Gary Manufacturing barrier curtains are the perfect solution to keep everyone safe and assist with the reopening of many businesses starting their new normal.

Call us at 1-800-775-0804 or email for a free quote today!


GaryWear; Distributor Highlight

During the last 60 years, Gary Manufacturing has built relationships with distributors across the United States, as well as internationally. All of our distributors offer a variety of quality, reusable products to meet your incontinence needs. With distributors in 10 different states as well as England, Germany, and Australia we are confident you can find a distributor to assist you with purchasing from our GaryWear product line. Here we have highlighted two of their stories.

Since 1997 LL Medico has been distributing the full GaryWear product line, making them one of our longest-standing distributors for incontinence products. Heather and Alex have been a part of the family business since the company was created 25 years ago. The company started in Pennsylvania with all reusable products but steadily began including disposable products due to customer demand. Heather and Alex are proud that the company has been able to stay a family-owned business and appreciate the opportunity to assist customers and answer questions. For a full list of LL Medico’s product offering visit their site:

Protex Medical in Texas has been a distributor of GaryWear products since early 2002. They began as a small company selling vinyl and rubber diaper covers in 1994. Over the years the company steadily expanded to include the entire GaryWear line, as well as disposable diapers, mattress pads, training pants, and diaper pins. Matt and Allison purchased Protex just over a year ago when the original owner was ready to retire. Matt had spent years working with Protex developing their website and during this time he built an affinity for the business. Matt and Allison are happy to help customers and answer their questions. For a full list of Protex Medical’s product offerings visit their site:

At Gary Manufacturing, we are always looking for qualified distributors to partner with. If you are interested in becoming a distributor at Gary Manufacturing, we ask that you follow a couple of easy steps:

  • Email us at and tell us a little about your company
  • Review Distributor Requirements
  • Fill out our Distributor Application

At Gary, we vet all requests to partner to make sure the potential distributor is qualified and able to meet the needs of the end-user.

Our distributors are all qualified to care for customers and answer all their questions.

To find the distributor near you please access our full list here:

Rack Covers; Another Industrial Cover Offering from Gary Manufacturing

Gary Manufacturing produces all sizes of rack covers to protect, organize, and brand your industrial shelving.  Our rack covers come with two heavy-duty zips on the front and includes ties at the top for rolling up and securing the front section allowing easy access to equipment. We can also add options such as grommets to secure the cover with chain, pockets for documentation, or embroidery/silkscreen for stand-out branding. Custom rack cover closedWe typically produce these covers in our 10 oz or 18 oz reinforced vinyl, Banna, Premier, a poly-cotton blended fabric, or our nylons that we stock in a multitude of colors and strengths.

Three important benefits of adding Rack Covers to your facility:

Custom Rack CoversProtection – Our custom-made rack covers are able to protect your rack and its contents from dust, wind, and humidity.

Organization – An organized work area is one of the most important factors in getting through daily operations with efficiency. Our rack covers provide a clean, organized look for your office or factory.

Branding – We offer silkscreen, embroidery, and direct UV printing on any rack cover. We work with local vendors to print your logo offering instant brand recognition at a time when company identity is everything.

Getting started on your custom rack cover order is easy.  All we need to get started is;

  • Length x Width x Height measurement of rack
  • Material and color preference
  • Camera-ready art


Call or email us to speak with an expert regarding your project. or 619-429-4479

Custom Printed Military Table Covers

Conveniently located in San Diego, near several military bases, Gary Manufacturing is proud to work with our military offering table and chair covers for Officer and Enlisted Mess Halls.

Each cover is custom, made to your exact specifications.

We offer heavy-duty, knit or flannel backed vinyl table covers in a variety of colors for fitted or drape styles.  These covers can be easily wiped clean to ensure a germ-free eating environment and protect the longevity of the table underneath.

Add your Logo…

Unlike silkscreen printing of the past, we offer UV direct digital print. Add your command or battalion crest using the ultraviolet, direct print method.  This prints directly onto the cover, using light to cure the ink instantly, leaving a vivid, long-lasting impression of your command for many years to come.


What we need to get started…


Cover Style – Fitted or drape

Length of drop, 4-8 inches

Length x Width measurement of table-top

Material choice and color

Titan (leather-like)

Supreme (suede-like)

Camera ready art – Sized and Colored in Vector Format

Call us today for a free swatch  samples and a quote!

Custom Sales Rep Bag

In the last 10 years, Gary Manufacturing has been able to achieve excellent success in the custom bag industry.  Every request we get for a custom bag or custom cover is an opportunity to hone our skills in sales, production, and the manufacturing process.

Recently, a Midwest lighting company contacted us to produce a carry bag for an expensive light fixture.  This bag needed to cradle the specialty display equipment as well as house the sales reps’ notes and tools for use while on an outside sales call.  They had tried off-the-shelf products but due to the odd shape of the item, they realized the only solution was a bag that was custom designed specifically for their purposes.

Our custom sales expert was able to use her knowledge and experience to guide them through the front-end process seamlessly.  The lighting company sent us the fixture so we could design a bag that fit perfectly and functioned as needed.  We used 600/300 Denier Nylon for a durable solution as well as foam padding to protect the fragile piece of equipment.  We used heavy duty zips and removable clips to create a shoulder strap that was adjustable.  Adding the secure carry handle to the top of the bag was important to the customer so we made sure it was properly reinforced to handle the weight of the contents.

Our production team was able to turn the sample around within the week.  See the image below for the completed product;

Our customer was thrilled with the finished design and quality product we were able to produce for them.  They ordered 12 units right away and have subsequently placed orders for 48 more bags, all with printed logos to keep their branding at the forefront of their customers’ minds.  They have also asked us to design three other lighting fixture sales rep bags and have sent their sister company to us for other custom products.

At Gary Manufacturing we love putting the pieces of the puzzle together for our clients.  We design and manufacture with quality as a top priority.  We also are very conscious to keep costs down creating an affordable and durable product that meets your needs.

We’d like to hear from you.  Call or email us for a quote on your custom bag or custom cover needs.

Materials For Everyone

In the 60 years we have been in business, Gary Manufacturing has continued to grow and cycle our material offerings to meet current customer demand. Currently we stock over 400 different materials and have access to hundreds more. Vinyl, fabric, nylon…we have it all, and if we don’t, we’re able to find something that fits your need.

Fabric with a Purpose

Each type of fabric has its own purpose that caters to different projects we offer. If you have the idea, all you need to do is call in and let us recommend the material that works best for you. With over 4,000 square feet of space for materials, we are confident that we have something that will get your project complete.

Vinyl is Popular Again and We’re Not Talking About Records

Vinyl is one of our most popular segments of materials. With many different types of flannel, from supported and unsupported to knit-backed, flannel-backed, laminate, and scrim, our vinyl options are the most versatile in meeting your needs. From industrial shower curtains, fitted table covers, dust covers, and rack covers we can use these vinyls to create products that work in many different industries. We even have Prop-65 compliant vinyls for any companies in California that require the extra certification.

Fabric for any Project

Fabrics are also a great option depending on your project. With our nice, soft 100% polyester or one of our poly-cotton blends, you can create a custom table cloth, shower curtain or chair caps.

Our most versatile materials would be our Nylons. Customers like these options because they are super strong, water repellant, and tough for projects that require industrial strength while staying soft and pliable like a fabric. We have many different options of this material that we use for rack covers, custom bags, protective covers and custom equipment covers.  We also have many materials that are ROHS compliant to meet the current European Standards.

We believe that we are the experts and can fit your project with the perfect materials. Contact us with your requests and we do the rest. Check us out at to see our work.

60 Years of Gary Manufacturing

Gary Manufacturing opened for business in 1958. Today, we do not know much about the original Gary of Gary Manufacturing, but we know that the original owner sold to Bob in the mid 1960’s.

After 20+ years of ownership Bob sold to current owners Brian and Helen Smith in April 1995. Brian and Helen have managed to turn a small factory with 9 employees into a 12,000-sq. ft. space with over 30 employees. I recently sat down with the owners and current general manager, Kerri Smith, yes… it is all in the family here, to discuss their time as owners and what they think of the 60-year milestone.

Brian is originally from England and Helen comes from Ireland, they met in Cape Town while both were traveling and later married and started their family in South Africa. After having the opportunity to own a plastics factory in South Africa in the 1970’s, Brian and Helen moved their family to America in 1981. Fourteen years of Brian working back and forth between San Diego and Seattle in the Aerospace industry, he found Gary Manufacturing was for sale. 1995 was a risky year for the Smith family, with offering up everything they have to purchase the business. Helen, wanting to insure some form of income, decided to stay in her Corporate America position for another 11 months, before making the leap to join the business in March 1996. One of the biggest challenges in the first couple years of ownership was transitioning the factory to a computer-based system. As with many companies in the early 90’s, computerization was fairly new as most work was hand written, including all receipts, invoices, orders, etc.

As with many small businesses, the landscape changes over the years. When taking over in 1995 the biggest items were aprons, table covers, and body bags. In her first year with the business, Helen managed to double the growth of the incontinence department, which accounts for a third of the business to this day.

After securing vendorship with major companies in the mid 2000’s, shower curtains started becoming a big seller for the business, it is now the best-selling product line. Most of the items come from a request, some trial and error and if successful, implemented going forward, the most surprising being our Coach Coordinates department. After a couple request for custom RV drapes, the company started a full line of drapes that have been very popular among many RV distributors and individuals across the country.

Because Gary offers so much in the way of custom products, it goes without saying that there have been many weird requests over the years, with Helen vividly remembering a request for body bags with a clear window to show the face. “That one will always stick out to me,” chuckled Helen. “I just can’t imagine wanting to view the face.” Turns out this was for a movie set.

Moving for the 3rd time to the current building in 2013 has been a favorite moment for both Brian and Helen. Mentioning the improvement of facilities and surrounding areas as a major plus. There have been low points over the years, but Brian and Helen maintained that a positive outlook is the key to success.

When asked what advice they would give 1995 Brian and Helen they both agree that it was a great move, and nothing beats hard work.

My final question was asking what the future holds for Gary Manufacturing, the business is 60 years old and still growing an average of 5% every year. Brian and Helen hope to eventually retire, but then what would they do? After owning Gary for 20+ years coming to work each day is just second nature for them and not something they plan on changing anytime soon. The future looks bright for Gary Manufacturing.



Durable Robe Bag Covers for Choirs are Perfect for Tours

These are ideal for travel or storage, as they are extra long, and hold multiple garments.  Earlier this week, we got a really nice email from Ruth D. with the First Community Church in Columbus, OH who purchased our robe bag covers for the Chancel Choir as they toured Europe this summer. She was impressed by their capacity to hold multiple garments, and their durability.  And she has a few tips about using lightweight hangers too.  She writes:
“Hello Gary Manufacturing,
I haven’t forgotten you and intend to send some pictures of the red bags on tour!  I did not go on the trip but have pictures packing them, which I have attached. They aren’t very interesting but do show how the bags looked fully packed.  And you can see how the embroidery turned out.
Durable Robe Bag Covers for Choirs are Perfect for Tours
The robe bags worked well — had 62 robes plus the director’s robe, his stole, and I think he may have put his suit in there too!!!  I used all six robe bags, tagged them A,B,C,D,E,F and made large tags with their bag letter on one side and a list of whose robes ( and robe number) belonged inside.  Each bag had 10 or 11 robes inside.
They were quite heavy and our “bag captains” deserve accolades!  Five of the six bags were carried on both the regional Columbus-Newark and the overnight Newark-Berlin flights.  One gate agent wrapped bag C in plastic and shipped it through to Berlin.   When the group got to Berlin they were holding their breath that Bag C had made it OK.  (Frankly I was surprised the airlines let them carry them on at all.)
Durable Robe Bag Covers for Choirs are Perfect for Tours
I bought the flat flocked hangers after checking online for reviews to find the most durable ones.  (I used “Joy Mangano”  from Target.)
Our robes are 2-piece worn with a sleeveless black cassock underneath and a white surplice over it.  We pack them on the hanger in reverse, however, so that the cassock holds the surplice in place and keeps its wide yoke from slipping off the hanger.  You will see that in the “packing” picture.
Durable Robe Bag Covers for Choirs are Perfect for Tours
Only a few hangers broke and I had included two spares in each bag.  The robe bag covers took quite a beating being tossed under the bus, dragged through airports, etc.  But absolutely amazingly–they washed up sparkling clean — came out of the dryer looking like new! I figured I’d send them to the dry cleaner, but one of the bag captains decided to wash his in cold water, Tide, and stuff it in his dryer.  I was concerned when I heard, but totally surprised how it turned out, so I washed the others myself.  The webbing handles are just slightly pink (!), but the embroidery and zippers remain white.
Also the hangers which were flat and lightweight.  (St. Olaf told me they use wooden hangers — must make the bags even heavier !!)
I am hoping to get a few more pictures which show the choir in concert and the bags on tour so you can see what the robes actually look like.
The choir started in Berlin, then Dresden, Leipzig, Prague, and Salzburg.  11 days.  They returned from Munich.
Thank you so much for your help and the quick service.
We found a nice video of the choir singing just before they left to go on tour. Enjoy!