Custom-made at standard prices is the motto of Kempa Keukendeuren, a company which manufactures individual kitchen cabinet doors and kitchen furniture in the Herentals, in the Flanders region of Belgium.
“We don’t have mass production or any warehouse, each order is tailor-made for the customer,” explians Kempa marketing manager Filip Laureyssen. “However, as we still want our products to be affordable, we take advantage of every opportunity to increase our efficiency. Under no circumstances will our high quality be compromised in the process.”
With this in mind, Kempa decided not to liquid-coat some of its MDF boards in future, but rather to use a Wagner powder coating system.
Customer demand meets efficient production
Two influencing factors came together here. Firstly, the customers – who mostly come from Belgium and the Netherlands – increasingly asked for powder-coated MDF boards, because they are usually cheaper and more durable. “You need to understand that the powder coating of MDF is significantly more widespread in Belgium than it is in Germany,” explains Filip Laureyssen.
“From our point of view, the technology has only just reached a level of sophistication where we wanted to use it.”
Wagner developed a new procedure for coating MDF boards, which has been on offer since 2014. The technical centerpiece is units that are capable of achieving flawless electrostatic powder coating thanks to an innovative new charge distribution.
The challenge when powder-coating MDF boards is to electrostatically charge the wood. For this purpose, Wagner has developed special units which enable optimal powder coating on standard MDF boards by means of an innovative new charge distribution – as used by kitchen cabinet door manufacturer Kempa in Herentals, Belgium.
Secondly, Kempa wanted to make production more efficient and, above all, save working time. “Using the new system, two employees create several kitchens each day. Powder coating is more than twice as fast as liquid coating and we can immediately further process the workpieces without any drying time,” says Filip.
The procedure improves quality at the same time: in just a single work step, a coat is applied that is not only cheaper, but also more resistant and durable.
New PXM powder center in use
Following thorough consultation with Alexander Buchmüller, business development and sales manager (MDF) at Wagner, Kempa opted for a Wagner plastic booth in conjunction with field controller technology, ten PEA XL C4 automatic guns and the PXM powder center.
“We had only brought the powder centre onto the market shortly before Kempa placed their order,” recalls Alexander. “It was perfect for the task, as it guarantees optimal powder supply both from a powder container and directly from the box.”
The system was installed in Herentals in February 2015 and has been in daily operation since May 2015.
Five of Wagner’s automatic PEA XL C4 guns are mounted on each of two reciprocators and thes provide a seamless powder coating inside a plastic booth. Wagner says this is not only cheaper, but also more hardwearing and durable than liquid coating.
Now that the initial phase is largely completed, Kempa is pleased with the oujtcome so far: “We are very satisfied with the service provided by Wagner. We would buy the system again without reservation”, says Filip. “We have achieved our objectives: higher quality with considerably less effort. At the same time we can produce more, and our staff’s capacity is freed up, so they can be more efficient. Almost no complaints, as well as cheaper and faster production – what more can you want?”
Filip concludes saying that Kempa’s customers are also satisfied with the new surface finish.