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Paper Reinforced Phenolic is an exceptionally tough board made from wood fibre and phenolic polymers. The “X” designations generally distinguish manufacturing processes which result in different levels of electrical properties (i.e., dielectric strengths). Paper-based phenolics with enhanced mechanical and electrical properties are available in a variety of sheet, rod, and tube sizes. One of the most common applications for paper reinforced phenolic is printed circuit board substrates (PCB). These PCB materials are known as FR-1 and FR-2 – FR-2 is rated to 130 °C, FR-1 is rated to 105 °C.

Grades of Paper Reinforced Phenolic:

Grade X material results in a tough laminate with high impact resistance, excellent tensile, compressive and flexural strengths. Although it has excellent mechanical properties, it is not recommended for applications where electrical properties are important and humidity is high.


  • High impact strength.
  • Excellent tensile, compressive and flexular strengths.
  • Continuous operating temperature of 250F.
  • Great for Tooling Plates used in the production of printed circuit boards.
  • Perfect for stable, high-strength tabletops on routers & fabricating equipment.
  • Meets Mil-I-24768/12
  • Meets LP-509 Type PBM

Grade XX is copper in color and most commonly used in general electric insulation. Applications include barriers, breaker arms, switch panel boards, and relay and switch bases. This product meets the requirements of MIL-I-24768/11, Type PBG.


  • Extremely high mechanical strength
  • Low water absorption
  • Superior electrical characteristics
  • Good machinability

Grade XXX is recommended for most mechanical applications and properties because of its high dielectric strength and good resistance to moisture. Excellent choices for Grade XXX applications are intricate punch parts, insulating washers, spacers, terminal boards, switch bases and other electrical components.


  • Best electrical properties of paper based phenolics
  • High dielectric strength
  • Moisture resistant
  • Sheets meet MIL-I-24768/10, type PBE

Brand Names

  • Norplex-Micarta
  • Garolite

Emco Industrial Plastics doesn’t claim to represent all of the manufacturers or trade name products listed. This list is intended as a guide of typical materials available for purchase from Emco Industrial Plastics, Inc. For additional information, contact an Emco Industrial Plastics representative by filling out the form below.

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At a Glance

Generic Name
Phenolics, Paper Reinforced

Available In
Sheet, Rod, Tube

NEMA X per MIL-I-24768/12 PBM; NEMA XX per MIL-I-24768/11 PBG; NEMA XXX per MIL-I-24768/10 PBE

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Technical Information

Stock Products Properties Applications Advantages Grades

Stock Products

Sheet 0.03″ – 10″ TH Up to 48″ x 96″; CTS Natural, Dark Brown, Black
Rod 1/16″ – 6″ DIA Std. foot lengths; CTS Natural, Dark Brown, Black
Tube Available

Give us your cut-to-size dimensions. We will precision-cut these plastics to your exact size. Additional sizes and colors available upon request.


Physical PropertiesUnitsASTMResults
Density lb/in³ D792 0.049
Water Absorption, 24 hrs % D570 2
Mechanical PropertiesUnitsASTMResults
Tensile Strength – Lengthwise psi D638 15000
Tensile Strength – Crosswise psi D638 12000
Flexural Strength – Lengthwise psi D790 16000
Flexural Strength – Crosswise psi D790 13200
Flexural Modulus – Lengthwise psi D790 1100000
Flexural Modulus – Crosswose psi D790 900000
Compressive Strength psi D695 32000
Hardness, Rockwell R D785 M100
IZOD Impact Strength Notched – Lengthwise ft-lb/in D256 0.65
IZOD Impact Strength Notched – Crosshwise ft-lb/in D256 0.6
Thermal PropertiesUnitsASTMResults
Coefficient of Linear Thermal Expansion – Lengthwise (x 10⁻⁵ in./in./°F) D696 0.8
Coefficient of Linear Thermal Expansion – Crosswise (x 10⁻⁵in./in./°F) D696 1.2
Max Operating Temp °F 257
Thermal Conductivity BTU-in/ft²-hr-°F C177 2.03
Flammability Rating UL94 H – B
Electrical PropertiesUnitsASTMResults
Dielectric Strength, 1/8″ th. V/mil D149 750 (XX)
Dielectric Constant @ 1 MHz D150 5
Dissipation Factor @ 1 MHz D150 0.045
Arc Resistance sec D493 110

NOTE: The property values presented above are typical values intended for reference and comparison purposes only. They should NOT be used as a basis for design specifications or quality control. Contact us for manufacturers’ complete material property datasheets. All values at 73°F (23°C) unless otherwise noted.


  • Terminal boards
  • Bearings, gears
  • Gaskets, washers
  • Wear strips



  • Strong and stiff
  • Outstanding electrical properties (electrical grades)
  • Excellent bearing and wear properties (bearing grades)
  • Good creep resistance
  • Dimensionally stable
  • High temperature grades available


  • Paper

NOTE: Several grades of this material are available. For additional information regarding this plastic, contact your Emco Industrial Plastics representative or call 973-862-4148.


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