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Scott ChambersJan 18, 20245 min read

Top 3 Tips for Using Dual Lock Tape

So, you’ve started considering dual lock tape for your project— what are the next steps?

With hundreds of versions of Velcro and dual lock tape, manufacturing dual lock tape in a custom project is a unique undertaking. Both the design and application will play a significant role in your product’s usability. 

Dual lock tape is one of the many materials Strouse regularly transforms into custom, die cut parts, but it’s not always the most intuitive application. 

If you’re searching for a reclosable solution for your product, you’ll want to understand how to properly assemble dual lock tape, adjust the adhesive strength based on your needs, and more. Let’s get into it. 

What is Dual Lock Tape?

Dual lock tape is a type of reclosable mechanical fastener with a  powerful double sided adhesive bond on either side. It provides a point of attachment where one object can be removed, readjusted, and reattached to its original position against the other. 

dual lock tape

From Prototyping to Full-Scale Manufacturing

Dual lock tape works in a similar way as classic Velcro®, but it doesn’t use hooks and loops. Instead, tiny plastic “stems,” A.K.A. plastic pieces with mushroom-shaped heads, interlock and create an audible snap. The hundreds of tiny stems on the surface of a dual lock tape interlock to join two pieces together 

While hook and loop tapes have two distinct sides, either piece of dual lock tape will have the same construction (granted the number of heads per square inch can change); therefore, a piece of dual lock tape can mate with any other piece.

How is Dual Lock Tape Used?

Due to the ability to reclose dual lock tape at will, assemblies or attachments that must remain removable or snap-in-place are perfect use cases for the material. 

For example, think of attaching an overhead vehicle light, window, or door trim panels. It’s easy to implement reclosable fasteners for both indoor and outdoor uses.

Although dual lock tape is easy to use, it might not always be perfect every time, especially if you’re opting for hand over automated assembly. Yet, part application is still an essential part of product usability, which is why we’re going to cover some of the ways you can get the most out of your dual lock tape. 

3 Tips for Using Dual Lock Tape 

Designing, planning, and applying dual lock tape isn’t always a walk in the park. You need to figure out what exact tape you need, how to assemble it, adjust for strength (if required), and maximize your adhesive converting


From dual lock tape to Velcro®, there’s a wide spectrum of reclosable fasteners to choose from. However, even within the category of dual lock tape, there are many different material variations. 

3M classifies the types of dual lock tape by how many stems appear per square inch. For instance, “Type 170” has 170 stems per square inch. With gripping power up to four times that of industrial strength hook and loop tape, this type 170 tape allows you to use much smaller pieces, and its self-adhesive backing is strong enough for various industries: automotive, electronics, medical, construction, industrial, and more!

Dual lock tape also enhances your application by reducing rattling and vibrating components, standing up to prolonged exposure to water/humidity, handling temperatures from -20°F to 200°F (-29°C to 93°C), and resisting attack by most common solvents and alkaline solutions.

dual lock assembly


The following three simple steps will ensure a bond the application requires with dual lock tape:

  1. Clean — Before applying dual lock tape strips, clean the surfaces with isopropyl alcohol (or rubbing alcohol) with a clean cotton cloth and let it dry thoroughly.
  2. Cut — Any method that delivers a straight, clean cut can be used (scissors, cutting knife, die cut, etc.). How much tape per strip? Estimate 4 square inches per pound of holding weight. It will change based on the number of heads, though. 
  3. Apply — Lift the corner edge of the liner off of the PSA (pressure-sensitive adhesive) backing and pull back; touch the dual lock tape to the surface of the substrate; press uniformly and firmly with fingers or a roller. Full adhesion is complete in 1 hour.

For custom design assistance, samples, and added precision, ask a flexible material converter whether you should use die cut tape.


Pausing during your application to cut strips of dual lock tape can be a time-wasting, messy, and inaccurate process. If you’re using dual lock tape for your project, you’ll want to decide whether using custom cuts to save time makes sense.

The rigidity of dual lock tape allows it to be efficiently converted, with components cut to custom sizes, shapes, and formats that meet tight die cut tolerances. Many other specialty materials aren’t rigid enough to hit accurate tolerances. Getting your dual lock tape converted will result in an accurate and consistent product

Next Steps 

You’ve learned some tips to use dual lock tape effectively; however, there are still many factors to remember. If you’re thinking about using dual lock tape for your part components, aligning your design with your chosen material, manufacturability, application, and product use should be one of your top priorities. But what’s the best way to get started?

Request a Sample Today

Whether the dual lock tape is assembled by hand or by automation, you can work alongside an adhesive converter to design a solution that solves a functional need and is customized to fit in-place processes. In addition, many converters have manufacturer relationships (such as Strouse's partnership with 3M) that provide dual lock tape at discount pricing and quickly meet tight timelines.

Feel free to reach out for a sample to help determine whether your current design fits the intended solution, or you can head to our Learning Center for more general information.



Originally published: October 14, 2021


Scott Chambers

As the VP of Sales and Marketing for Strouse, Scott oversees Strouse's Go-To-Market Strategy. Scott has a BS in Business Management from Coastal Carolina, a JD from the University of Baltimore School of Law, and an MBA from Indiana University.