Unless you’ve been on a desert island for the last couple of years, you will have heard a lot about zero-joint technology in the woodworking industry.
Naturally, as with any new technology, there has been much discussion around the zero-joint concept. Those who have taken the plunge and invested in this new edgebanding technology, however, are reaping the rewards of improved finish quality and lower costs whilst at the same time attracting new customers.
“Our old edgebander was coming to the end of its life,” explains Paul Connett, managing director at Ilkeston based Orchard Kitchens. He continues: “We were looking for a like-for-like replacement, but when we saw the results from the Brandt Ambition 1230 airTec machine, it changed our thinking and we knew zero-joint technology was the way forward.
Brandt Ambition 1230 airTec at Orchard Kitchens
“With a turnover of around £1 million, our business is towards the entry level end of the market. The Ambition 1230 airTec, however, is an affordable edgebander which, because it features airTec zero-joint technology, gives us the ability to compete with the big boys in the industry.
“The Brandt delivers first class results every time and the airTec system which joins the edge and the panel without adhesive, using hot air, gives an incredibly tight ‘invisible’ joint.
“Prior to investing in the Ambition 1230 airTec, we had to buy in gloss doors and therefore couldn’t compete on price with the mass producers. Now we make our own Pride range of gloss doors and have recently won a contract for 36 flats, something we could not have contemplated prior to getting the Brandt machine.
“It saves us so much time and money. Not only is it about 50% faster than our old edgebander, but also the finish is so much better. It requires no manual cleaning of the edges and is saving us a fortune in finishing, allowing us to compete with large manufacturers like Howdens and Magnet for kitchen contracts with builders and developers. This is the first machine we have bought from Homag UK and it certainly won’t be the last,” claims Paul Connett.
High performance with cost efficiency
Echoing the Homag Group’s philosophy of being innovators, Brandt was the pioneer for airTec technology, being the first company to market a zero-joint edging machine.
The compact Brandt Ambition 1230 airTec model is fully equipped with pre-milling, a heavy duty pressure zone for coil and strip materials, front and rear end trim saws, top and bottom trimming and profiling units and a corner rounding unit to provide complete panel processing. With the Ambition 1230 airTec, the need for hand finishing is eliminated because it has a profile scraper, a glue joint scraper and a buffing unit.
Another attraction of the Brandt is the intuitive easyTouch control system with its user oriented menu structure. It features a clearly arranged 7in graphic display with simple touch screen operation. The easyTouch controller has supporting functions that are simple and easy to access. The logging of production data, the selection of programmes or the glue temperature can be quickly checked on the 7in display.
With the ever increasing diversity of edge materials, manufacturers need a highly flexible machine with rapid edge-changing capabilities. The easyTouch control system makes it possible to adapt the range of operations to meet customers’ specific requirements and save the programs for instant call up.
Woodcraft Joinery choose airTec solution
Based in Brierley Hill, Woodcraft Joinery Ltd is a specialist contracting refurbishment, shop fitting, joinery and bespoke manufacturer. Production manager, Jack Cooper, outlines why Woodcraft invested in the Brandt Ambition 1230 airTec solution: “Our edgebander was 14 years old and we wanted to get a replacement that produced seamless edges.
“We drew up a short-list of potential suppliers, but in the final analysis it was our previous experience with Homag UK that won the day. The WEEKE Vantage 43 CNC machine we purchased from Homag UK six years ago had proved to be a cost effective, high quality machine and the company’s aftersales service was first class.
“As a consequence, we decided to invest in the airTec edgebander at W16. We went for the model with the PU hot melt option as we wanted to be able to process real wood edging. Although we have only had the machine for a few months, it is already proving to be an essential addition to our plant list.
“When the panels come off the machine, they are totally clean and so there is no need for manual finishing, the edges are perfect and good to go. I would estimate that this new machine is giving us a saving of at least 30% already and I’m sure there is more to come as we begin to exploit the full capability of the edgebander,” concludes Jack Cooper.
The Ambition 1230 airTec can handle edge tape thickness from 0.4mm to 3mm and solid wood up to 6mm; it also has a panel thickness capability of 8-60mm. Overall, the 1230 airTec is a real work horse which will consistently deliver first class results.
All this, coupled with Homag’s flexible finance packages, brings high end technology and invisible joints within reach of the smaller manufacturer.
For more information or a demonstration of the Brandt Ambition 1230 airTec, contact Adele Hunt at Homag UK on 01332 856424.