Marrying technical development with lean manufacturing, the new initiative sees the company’s technical experts working directly with customers to optimise adhesive consumption and reduce the quantity of parts, work in progress, and total cycle time. With the woodworking industry migrating towards finished products that are lighter and stronger, adhesives can contribute directly to the stability and performance of bonded components.

Innovative techniques, such as the use of reactive hot melt adhesives or foaming properties, directly support more efficient manufacturing by reducing waste and raising throughput. For example, HB Fuller’s foamable adhesive, Rakoll 4330, reduces water use and also coat weight. Foaming slows water penetration, helping to improve the quality and consistency of the bonded product’s surface. Since no solvents or formaldehydes are used in its production, specifiers can actively support cleaner, more environmentally-sustainable manufacturing operations.

Rakoll 4330’s foaming characteristics make it suitable for a wide variety of manufactured products, including doors, fineline veneer, foils, plywood and parquet flooring. The new lean adhesive strategy is led by the company’s Durable Assembly team – a specialist unit comprising adhesive specialists in woodworking, automotive, textiles, panels, filters, footwear and general assembly.

Explains Salvador Alvarado, EIMEA business director: “Adhesive solutions are used in a variety of applications, including flooring, doors and recreational vehicle sidewalls. When adhesive-bonded products can resist deformation and fracture (have high green strength), production can move from lamination to secondary manufacturing efficiently, without interruption.

“Our focus with the lean adhesive initiative is to work in partnership with customers and their substrate and machinery suppliers to reduce cycle times, increase output and cut energy use. Since our adhesive technology enables lighter products, it also directly reduces the CO2 transportation footprint.”