The technology is revolutionising the achievable optical quality of edging. The uptake of this processing method has been embraced by furniture producers the world over and is generally considered to be the optimum technology for anyone who wants to differentiate their products from those of the competition.

Recently, there has been some negative press and confusion about zero-joint technology edgeband processing. The technology is still new to many processors and the fine-tuning of machinery to suit the selected edgeband is crucial to achieving the ideal of zero-joint quality.

Many edgeband manufacturers have introduced edgebands suitable for achieving zero-joint finish, but not everything is as it would seem at first glance. The most important thing to understand is that there are different zero-joint qualities achievable, and some do not provide a permanent, colour-fast zero-joint.

With so many different options available, it is no wonder that choosing between them can be a daunting prospect – some zero-joint edgebands can be processed by hot air but not by laser, some have an adhesive polymer layer, whilst others have a polymer functional layer – the differences abound.

Rehau has a solution: the company says that its zero-joint edgeband can be processed by all zero-joint technologies, because it appreciates the importance of ensuring all coloured functional layers, irrespective of whether they are adhesive- or polymer-based, contain absorbers. This is of crucial importance for diode laser technology.

Furniture & Joinery Production spoke to Matthias Hacker, technical process specialist at Rehau, and asked him to provide some clarity on the most frequently-asked questions.

Which types of zero-joint edgeband are available from Rehau?
“Actually there are two zero-joint edgebands available from Rehau. Raukantex pro is the premium zero-joint edgeband with a polymer functional layer. This is suitable for all zero-joint processing technologies. Raukantex plus is the standard zero-joint edgeband with an adhesive functional layer. This is also suitable for all zero-joint technologies.

What is the difference between Raukantex plus and Raukantex pro?
Raukantex pro, formerly known as Raukantex laser edge, is the premium, fully polymer zero-joint technology edgeband, available either as a production item in whichever design you need or from the Rehau Express Collection in quantities as small as one roll. Raukantex pro provides a permanent zero-joint, which will not rub out, as the hardness of the functional layer is equivalent to that of the edgeband material.

Raukantex plus is an adhesive-based zero-joint solution, which will give a very good optical zero-joint finish. This is available from the Rehau Express Collection in quantities as small as 1m.

Raukantex plus is an extension of the Express Collection range and is perfect for anyone wanting to improve their finished products by using zero-joint processing without having to invest in hundreds of metres of stock. Even small joiners can benefit from zero-joint technology with this product.

Some adhesive-based zero-joint edgeband is not suitable for all technologies. Why is your adhesive based solution, Raukantex plus suitable?
The colour batch of the adhesive functional layer contains absorbers. These absorbers are imperative for processing by diode laser technology and NIR technology.

Are the processing results comparable when using hot-air and laser processes?
Yes, they are. Given the correct adjustments of the machine in question, laser diode and hot-air will achieve comparable results.

Are there any special considerations which need to be taken in to account with regard to the storage of Raukantex plus and Raukantex pro?
Under standard conditions (18°C) Raukantex pro can be stored for one year without any problems and Raukantex plus can be stored for six months.

Is zero-joint technology available for PVC edgebands?
Yes, it is. Raukantex pro, our fully polymer zero-joint solution works perfectly well with PVC, but only applied using hot-air technology. Processing of PVC by laser diode has not yet been authorised by the machine manufacturer.

What other advantages can Rehau offer? Why is your product offer so well-regarded in the market-place?
For many years Rehau has been considered the market leader in edgeband technology. We like to think we offer innovative, quality products which in turn help our customers to supply superior quality finished goods.

When someone buys a Rehau product, he buys the security and peace of mind that if he has a problem or needs technical support, Rehau will be prompt to offer support and guidance. This has never been more relevant than with zero-joint technology.

Rehau liaises closely with all machine manufacturers to ensure that our industry knowledge is second to none, making the transition to new technologies as smooth as possible.

If you’ve recently purchased zero-joint technology machinery and would like to trial a free sample roll of Raukantex pro 100% polymer zero-joint technology edgeband, why not give us a call and we’ll be happy to send you a roll of edgeband in your chosen design.

If you need advice or guidance with setting the parameters of your new machine to achieve the optimal finished quality, Rehau is always on hand to offer technical support. Why not go that final step and have the quality of your finished product tested and verified by Rehau’s technical department. We’ll even provide you with a certificate to this effect.