The bonding of high pressure laminates has been at the core of Starbank Panel Products since the company’s incorporation forty years ago. It’s fair to say, Starbank loves laminate.
Over this time Starbank has built up an unrivalled wealth of knowledge in fabrication of this impressive material, which has developed incredible properties in terms of surface finish and performance over the last decade.
The pace of product development in high pressure laminates (HPL) was further replicated at Starbank culminating in the launch of its own decorative lightweight core panel: STARlite® for example.
Starbank's impressive STARlite panel
As a major sub-contract fabricator for the interior fit-out and fire door industry, Starbank partners with all the major manufacturers and distributors to provide an almost unlimited choice of specified and non-specified decorative surfaces and core material options in the UK.
Starbank was also the first company in Europe with BM Trada to obtain an integrated management system together with FSC and PEFC chain-of-custody, way back in 2004.
Spray bonded panels
Environmental credentials have been further enhanced recently as part of an major factory move to a 16 acre, 116,000 sq ft manufacturing facility. With on-site biomass and solar energy recovery, Starbank says it will maintain its position as an ethical and responsible manufacturer in the UK marketplace.
Starbank business development manager, John McCaffrey, comments: “It’s really encouraging to see that more and more of our customers are demanding chain-of-custody certified products from us too, and high pressure laminate is now a very real part of that under the controlled wood standard. Currently our decorative panels are laminated using high quality PVA D3 adhesive as standard, or alternatively with a more specialist D4 glue line for demanding applications where required.
“We are currently producing 1100 high pressure laminate panels per week on average in a variety of sizes up to 3660 x 1525mm. It’s a testament to our production department who are able to achieve this capacity year on year. Its fast approaching 2.5m sq ft of decorative HPL in a combination of single and double sided finished product. Or if we put it another way, an area larger than 30 football pitches per annum!”
Once bonded, panels are automatically stored by job or size within Starbank’s Schelling VS16 robotic retrieval system which directly feeds two Schelling FH6 beam saws.
“It is an amazing system and there to protect the boards more than anything – delivering them quickly and efficiently to the saws without damage, even to sensitive gloss surfaces,” explains John.
“Further fabrication with cutting and optimisation, edgebanding using high performance PUR adhesives, contour edgebanding, CNC drilling and machining and throughfeed postforming are all at our customers’ disposal.
“We have always made a commitment to our customers that we will endeavour to achieve the highest possible quality at the best value price that we can. Part of this promise involves us continually investing in both our technology and our skilled fabricators. 2017 will see us once again invest heavily in our plant and machinery, with major plans within our laminating department.
“We are genuinely excited at the opportunities ahead and are confident that the quality and technology at Starbank has never looked better.”