Rehau opening laser edgeband plant in Montreal
At left, Bob Zeichman, Grand Rapids, MI-based Rehau sales director, shows Rehau Raukantex laser edge polymer edgebanding to two French visitors at Interzum.

COLOGNE, GERMANY

- At the Interzum 2011 wood materials show, developments in materials intended for laser-weld edgebanders are coming quickly, in anticipation of further laser edgebanding machine developments to be announced at next week's Ligna in Hannover, Germany.

Thomas Ponater, Rehau's U.S. business unit manager for furniture, says his firm will open a Montreal plant to manufacture the specialized panel edgeband material for laser edgebanders, which use a processing system that replaces gluepots with edgebanding whose surface is activated by powerful lasers in laser edgebander machines.

Fred Smith Store Fixtures, DePauw, IN, which receives the first publicly announced U.S. installation of a laser edgebander in August, will source his materials from Rehau in Europe. Fred Smith Store Fixtures has bought a Homag Lasertec-equipped edgebander, which will be on display at AWFS Fair in Las Vegas July 20-23 at the Stiles Machinery exhibit.

Two more U.S. installations are reportedly going into U.S. office furnishing manufacturing operations, at least one of which will use edgebanding materials supplied by Doellken-Woodtape, according to Markus Raves, director of marketing and sales development for the unit

Rehau opening laser edgeband plant in Montreal 
 

of Sureteco.

Doellken-Woodtape's material is branded Fusion-Edge, and Raves showed examples of its durability with edgebanding panels set above heat lamps and under continuous running water during the entire run of the Interzum show. Sureteco has created a microsite explaining the Doellken fusion-edge technology.

Proponents of laser edgebanding say it offers both manufacturing advantages - elimination of glue seams and glue pots; and creative and marketing opportunities - for instance, smoother, more durable edging that doesn't attract dirt or bacteria would appeal to medical, food and educational markets.

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