Melamine Faced Chipboard is a low cost alternative to HPL, and is suitable for low traffic dry areas.ConstructionA decorative melamine foil is pre-bonded under pressure to both sides of a moisture resistant chipboard core. Like SGL melamine faced chipboard is self supporting and does not require any additional support.ApplicationsMFC offers a cheaper alternative to High Pressure Laminate suitable for use where the intended environment is both dry and unlikely to be subject to abuseBenefits- Self supporting double sided board- Cut panels can be lipped in matching or contrasting PVC for a durable, impact resistance edge detail- Hygienic and easy to clean
High Pressure Laminate can be referred to in different ways, most commonly: - laminate, plastic laminate, plastic veneer or Formica (trade name).
Approx 6 sheets of phenolic resin impregnated Kraft paper are pressed together under heat & pressure. The top layer is a decorative melamine which gives the sheet its pattern & colour.Intense pressure and heat causes all the layers to fuse together, setting to form a thin impact resistant sheet material.
Unlike MFC or solid grade laminate, which is self supporting, HPL needs to be bonded to a suitable substrate such as moisture resistant chipboard, to maintain structural stability. The resulting 'sandwich' of HPLchipboard- HPL, is then lipped in matching HPL or another suitable edging material such as PVC / Acrylic or hardwood.
Solid grade laminate (SGL) is referred to in many ways: - compact, compact grade laminate, solid phenolic laminate, & Trespa (trade name)
About 70 sheets of Kraft paper are bonded together under pressure with phenolic resin. The top and bottom layers are a decorative melamine which form the end pattern & colour of the sheet. Intense pressure and heat causes all the layers to fuse together, and once the resin has set, forms a solid,waterproof and highly resilient material.
Unlike High Pressure Laminate which requires a substrate such as chipboard or plywood to give structural support, SGL is a self supporting material with excellent impact resistance.
Toughened glass (also known as tempered or safety glass) is made from float (annealed) glass via a thermal tempering process
Float glass is cut to the required size and any required processing, such as polishing the edges or drilling holes in the glass, must be carried out before the toughening process starts.
The glass is then placed onto a roller table, taking it through a furnace which heats it to above its annealing point of 600 °C. It is then rapidly cooled with forced draughts of air below its annealing point. This causes the outer portion to harden and contract, while the inner portion remains free to flow for a short time. The final
contraction of the inner layer induces compressive stresses in the surface of the glass balanced by tensile stresses in the body of the glass.
Silk screen printing is the process by which coloured or enameled, translucent patterns can be mechanically transferred to the glass surface prior to toughening.
The paint is effectively placed on the glass by first forming a screen made up of a very tight mesh with either the holes open or blocked. The paint is then forced through these holes onto the glass in a controlled manner. The resulting colours/ patterns are fired into the glass during the toughening process which makes for an extremely durable hardwearing product which is maintained over the life of the glass.
Silk screen printing can be offered in degrees of opacity to closely match an acid etch effect, with the advantage that unlike actual acid etching, screen printing does not show greasy marks such as finger prints and is more easily cleaned
Sandblasting is the method by which processed glass can be surface treated by impacting with tiny particles of grit etc. By varying the grit size, pressure, angle of attack and duration various patterns / effects can be produced.
After sandblasting it is normal to coat with a protective layer of Ritec Clearshield of similar polymer coating, to protect the surface and to apply a durable and easy clean layer over the textured surface that results from sandblasting.
Real wood veneers are obtained by slicing though the 'trunk' of trees. The different appearance of the grain, or "figure" in the veneer depends upon the method that the wood is sliced. The cut veneers are then bonded to a suitable substrate such as moisture resistant chipboard, which can be edged in either the same veneer of
matching hardwood.To complete the finished product the veneered boards are factory finished in a 2 part AC lacquer to form a protective hard polish.
Veneer Leaves are produced by slicing straight across, parallel to a line through the centre of the log, at a tangent to the growth rings.
Quarter cut / straight grains
The log is first cut into quarters and each quarter log / flitch is straight sliced at right angles to the annular
growth rings. This produces a veneer with a relatively unifrom linear vertical grain
Cast acrylic sheet can be used as an alternative to glass in areas where the appearance of glass is desired but not practical to the environment. It has a very high molecular weight making it strong, resilient, easy to handle and fabricate.
Available in a large range of colours, cast acrylic is made between sheets of high quality glass. These glass 'formers' maybe shot blasted of otherwise textured which then replicates itself on to the surface of the acrylic during the casting process creating effects such as frosting and dimpling.
3Form is an exciting environmentally friendly material concept combining ecoresin and modern textures & interlayers to create a surface with unique architectural applications.
Visit www.3form.eu/materials.php for further information.