Product innovation and leadership in the woodworking industry were recognized during the recent AWFS Fair. Seven exhibiting companies were given a Visionary New Product Award by AWFS.
The Visionary New Product Awards recognize creativity and innovation as well as leadership in green/environmental product development. Entries are evaluated on quality, production impact, practicality, innovation and user-friendliness.
This year's awards were chosen by a panel of judges representing various areas of the industry, including professional end users, woodworkers and company owners.
Product Innovation Winner: Bioformix, Inc. - Nexabond 2500 wood adhesive
Nexabond 2500 adhesive from Bioformix uses a water- and solvent-free formula that dramatically cuts assembly times. Components glued with Nexabond 2500 reportedly achieve high strength in minutes, compared to 24 hours required for many water-based wood glues. Because it does not contain water, wood joints don’t swell, eliminating long dry times before finishing. Since it doesn’t contain water, it can bond any wood, even oily woods. Its quick-bonding chemistry also reduces or eliminates the need for clamping.
Nexabond 2500 adhesive also accepts most stains and finishes. It bonds regardless of humidity and temperature variations. It works with most wood species, but also can be used to attach metal, plastic, glass and foam to wood.
It is available in 1, 4 and 16 fl. oz. containers. It also comes in short, medium or long setting times. It is a high viscosity, cyanoacrylate clear liquid. It bonds quickly with no activator required, and also redcued squeeze out. www.bioformix.com
Product Innovation in Machinery over $50,000: Biesse America - AirForce hot air edgebanding technology
Biesse’s AirForce hot air edgebanding system allows companies to access the green benefits of top invisible glue line quality without need for a laser system.
This new technology allows panel processors to have a user friendly, glue-free system to weld laser edges without the need of a complex and expensive laser system. AirForce emits very forceful, very hot compressed air through a slot nozzle directly onto the reactive layer of commonly available laser banding to activate that layer and bond the banding to the substrate.
AirForce's technique allows changes based on banding colors without any setup while laser technology is very sensitive to edge material colors. Biesse's AirForce is applicable to almost any edgebanding model. No relevant mechanical impact on the machines glue unit is required. The two systems, glue and AirForce, are always on-line as the changeover between the two technologies does not require any manual setup. The technology is designed for users looking for the quality of a laser edgebander without the expense. The system itself is designed to have no impact on the machine, with no need for glue or cleaning agents. It is reported to be affordable and can be integrated into any Biesse edgebanding machine. www.biesseamerica.com
Product Innovation in Machinery under $50,000: SNX Technologies - Vitap Eclipse automated contour edgebander
The Vitap Eclipse contour edgebander from SNX Technologies is a semi-automatic machine for concave and convex shaped panels 10 to 60mm in thickness and with 1 to 3mm edgeband thickness. It comes with a trimming unit and can process large or small pieces without extra setup. It is designed to be a versatile unit with simple operation and minimal shop footprint.
Two rollers copy the shape of the piece. It has a glue pot with 1 Kg capacity, and automatic guillotine for coiled material up to 3 mm x 45 mm. A trimming station with pneumatic tilt allows edgebanding of large pieces.
At Solid Comfort, a manufacturer of hotel room furniture, it is used for edgebanding of contoured shapes, and it allowed that company to bring the contour work in house (see story on Solid Comfort in this issue). The edgebander’s repeatable quality allowed Solid Comfort to be more competitive with different shaped parts. www.snxtechnologies.com
Product Innovation and Productivity in Power Tools: Senco - Duraspin auto feed screw systems
Senco’s DuraSpin auto-feed screw systems eliminates the need to load and position fasteners individually, minimizing screw waste and cutting down on installation time. Senco introduced the next generation of its 2-inch auto-feed screwdrivers in corded versions as well as new, compact 18-volt Li-ion battery powered units that can drive between 500 to 700 screws per charge, depending on the screw length and substrate.
Enhancements to the line include higher torque motors, application-specific tool speeds (2,500 or 5,000 RPM), a variable speed trigger with lock and reverse options, and a patent-pending corner-fit feed system, for better access and screw placement in tight spaces. A locking depth of drive adjustment regulates the precise depth needed for flush drives or countersinking screws.
Other DuraSpin features include a tool-free screw length adjustment (1 to 2 inches) and a belt hook. The tools are ergonomically designed for use with one hand, however, a cushioned second hand grip helps minimize wrist and arm fatigue by reducing the exertion needed to complete each drive. It can be used to install drywall, subfloor, sheathing, wood or composite decking, or for fastening metal to metal. www.senco.com
For Product Innovation in Software: Mozaik Software - Mozaik CNC complete software
Mozaik Software’s Mozaik CNC is complete screen to machine software for cabinets, casework, furniture, closets, and more. A subscription is only $125 per month including updates, support, training videos, customer forums, and the post processor link for CNC routers. Mozaik CNC Complete is linked to more than 100 machine models worldwide with customers in more than 20 countries.
CNC Complete is fully integrated software from design to manufacture to nesting to G-Code. It is software written and maintained entirely by Mozaik Software, with no third party developers and no software royalties to pay. Mozaik’s exclusive Combination Joinery can be used to create the ideal construction method. Quickly change from one method to another. Combine dados, qualified tenons, KD fasteners, screws, confirmats, or dowels. The Mozaik Optimization software has several different algorithms built in to generate the best possible nesting solutions. Their Pick-A- Pattern technology allows the user to choose each pattern as they are created. Easily move parts and modify the nests. Mozaik allows the user to become involved with, and remain in control of, the nesting process. www.mozaiksoftware.com.
Green/Environmental Leadership in Finishing Category: Kremlin-Rexson-Exel North America
Kremlin Rexson has introduced the new EOS pump range with two pumps: 15-C25 and 30-C25. The new EOS Pump provides reliable performance and allows for simple maintenance, easy cleaning, and fast color changes while using minimal solvents.
The EOS System is designed to reduce operation downtime and improve productivity. By using the Xcite Airmix spray gun in conjunction with the EOS pump an operator can achieve up to 86 percent transfer efficiency. This means less overspray, less wasted material, and a better quality finish. Implementing the EOS System in a finishing shop may reduce at least one coating application and in some cases, more. When setting up the pump to start production there is minimal time needed to prime the system. In comparison to competition and older technologies, there is no stalling in between pump cycles. The EOS pump delivers a constant supply of coatings without pulsation. The mobile fluid packings in the EOS pumps facilitate fast flushing and uses significantly less solvent than fixed-packing pumps.
Airmix technology delivers such a great atomization that there is less material being sprayed into the environment. In some cases, customers don't even wear respirators because the overspray is so minimal. The EOS System requires a combined 4 cfm of compressed air. This is a significant energy savings (up to 75 percent) compared to HVL systems. www.kremlinrexson-sames.com
Green/environmental: Graco Inc. PD2K
Graco Inc.’s new ProMix PD2K positive displacement proportioner, unlike traditional systems that have large flush zones, mixes the material close to the gun so the flush zone is significantly smaller. This allows customers to use less paint and spend less on disposal costs. This also allows for faster color changes. And because there is limited mixed material in the system, it works well for short pot life materials. It is also compatible with acid-based materials.
Customers were looking for ways to increase efficiency in their plants, and by moving the mixing point closer to the gun, it is possible to reduce solvent use and mixed material waste by up to 80 percent compared to traditional electronic proportioners.
The ProMix PD2K Proportioner was developed using 100 percent positive displacement technology that produces accurate mix ratios (within 1 percent accuracy) and more consistent pump performance. Because the ProMix PD2K can be equipped with either two or four dosing pumps, it can manage up to 30 colors and four catalysts. It also allows customers to proportion both epoxy and urethane using one system, rather than using multiple units to achieve the same result. This proportioner is easy to set up and maintain, and handles various inbound pressures and viscosities without touchy fine-tuning. And unlike gear pumps, the ProMix PD2K has positive displacement precision dosing pumps that do not require factory rebuilds. www.graco.com.
The AWFS awards were previously known as the Sequoia Awards. For more information on the Association of Woodworking & Furnishings Suppliers, visit www.awfsfair.org.
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