The ‘bonding’ engineers at Lohmann not only provide support for customers while developing the adhesive solution, they will also manufacture bespoke dispensers and machines. At the request of a customer, application engineers Gerd Rottmann and Jan Eller recently developed a laminating station with an integrated spool unwinder. When designing the station, the engineers were responsive to the special requirements of an extrusion facility and were guided by the set up of the existing machine and the materials used in the extrusion of PBT plastic tubes. During the process an 8mm wide adhesive tape is laminated. The application engineers provided the customer with a complete solution. They fitted the plastic tubing with DuploCOLL 377, a double-sided adhesive tape, which met the material and quality requirements and, in addition, ensured the tape was automatically fed into the machine. They also developed the inline laminating station DuploTEC (Technical Application Tools) TAT 90218R. This enables double-sided adhesive tape to be applied to the continuous profile fully automatically.
However, Lohmann applications engineer Jan Eller knows that every process is different and requires an individual approach: “The fact that the plastic tubing is not very stable in the longitudinal direction places high demands on the laminating process. Laminating cannot put any strain on the tube, or it might become deformed.” In order to avoid this, the spool unwinder was fitted with a motorised unwinding device to ensure that the adhesive tape unrolls easily, thus minimising the strain on the tube. The characteristics of the adhesive tape also have to be tailored to the process. It is not only the adhesive that has to be compatible with the materials being joined; the carrier and the characteristics of the liner also have to be adapted to the mechanical laminating process.
A laminating station like this offers the customer numerous advantages. As an inline solution, it has a significant cost advantage over the competition. Machines do not have to be modified, and no extra work is involved. Processes are also significantly more reliable compared with an offline version. A facility of this type can be adjusted to suit all kinds of profile sizes and can be used in a variety of industry sectors.
Having joined the magazine in 2012, Claire developed her knowledge of the industry through the numerous company visits, exhibitions and conferences she attended both in the UK and abroad.
Claire prides herself on keeping readers well informed and up to date with the latest industry news.