3D fronts manufacturing – A challenging classic

A defining characteristic of the country house style was the three-dimensional geometry of furniture fronts. Today, variations of that design feature can be found in other styles as well. Jowat promotes the optimisation of laminating processes of those intricate surfaces – with its products and extensive information.

Bei einer dreidimensional bearbeiteten Oberfläche kann die Qualität der Kaschierung durch die richtige Klebstoff- und Folienauswahl erheblich verbessert werden. Bild: Jowat SE

While country style furniture may have become something of a rarity, 3D fronts continue to fascinate – they just follow new trends. Most furniture is based on MDF, making it is possible to offer many different design and colour versions of the same high quality and for the same price. The fibreboard is generally laminated with a PVC or thermoplastic foil. The lamination quality of three-dimensional surfaces can be improved substantially if the right adhesive and foil are chosen.

Many stumbling blocks
There are many aspects in manufacturing that can become a stumbling block. For instance, the right storage and preparation of the substrates, the correct use of all production factors like adhesive application amount, sufficient drying, optimum pressing, and last but not least, a quality control. Therefore, Jowat and its partners are working on simplifying the lamination process for 3D surfaces. Several years ago, the enterprise revolutionised the laminating process for 3D furniture by developing one-component polyurethane dispersions (“1K PUD”). The products provided a ready-to-use solution with the crosslinking agent already mixed in the dispersion. Today, 1K adhesives are used in most laminating processes. For side edges and milled areas, the dispersion is applied twice. The first layer is applied to close the small pores and fibres on the cutting edge and in the milled areas because the dispersion tends to sag on those surfaces.

Reliable lamination guaranteed
After a short drying time, a second layer of adhesive is applied before the foil is laminated. To ensure a uniform result, the application amount is increased in gaps and areas with three-dimensional embellishments on the surface. The adhesive is reactivated during the lamination procedure, and flexible vacuum and membrane presses guarantee a reliable lamination of the foil on the MDF board.
Jowapur® dispersion adhesives are continually developed further by Jowat. One of the products added to the series is the 1K PU dispersion Jowapur® 150.93. The adhesive can be applied by atomised spraying at low processing temperatures, making it a great choice for laminating high-gloss foils. Ambient temperature and humidity, however, also play a role in whether the lamination meets what it promises. The German Adhesives Association (Industrieverband Klebstoffe e. V.) together with manufacturers like Jowat and Wemhöner have therefore published the “3D Furniture Front Production – Quality Guide”, a guideline on the appropriate handling of foils, adhesives and substrates. In addition, Jowat also advises customers on all aspects of the lamination process.

 

The article is published in the magazine "material+technik möbel 04/19" in German language. You can download the original article down below.