Editor's Note: This article has been excerpted from an earlier issue of Wood & Wood Products. To read the article in its entirety, click here.

Being a good environmental steward means Haworth Inc. of Holland, MI, must continuously review its materials and processes to eliminate waste. The company says reducing the amount of raw materials used for manufacturing products, as well as maximizing equipment utilization in production are two keys to global responsibility.

Reducing Waste in the Edgebanding Process
One of the processes Haworth looked at to reduce material usage while maximizing production efficiency, was the edgebanding line. A review of the company’s adhesive usage led Ed Velthouse, manufacturing engineer for Haworth, to determine that polyurethane (PUR) adhesive would be ideal for the edgebanding application.

A thin line of PUR can provide a strong, durable and long-lasting bond between particleboard panels and supports the use of thinner edgebanding. This results not only in a cleaner look, but reduces the natural resources used from the environment, the company says. However, because PURs react to moisture in air, Velthouse had the challenge of how to most effectively handle PUR adhesives in the production line. Within the edgebanding process, Haworth was using Homag edgebanders with open wheel pots.

The company determined it would need a closed adhesive dispensing system in order to fully optimize the PUR application system. Haworth is now using the Nordson PURBlue 4 melter with “melt-on-demand” in conjunction with Nordson’s EB60V slot nozzle to create a controlled, closed adhesive application system.

“Creating a clean, high-quality finished product with a thin but strong, durable adhesive bond using efficient manufacturing processes supports Haworth’s core values of being a sustainable corporation,” adds Velthouse.

Source: WoodworkingNetwork.com/RedBook

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.