Entire world is feeling the impact of Global economic slowdown and the woodworking industry is no exception. To face the fierce competition one has to produce High Quality product and make it different than the competitors.

Panel Cutting

We observe that, in spite of imported precision panel cutting machines, the Melamine faced board edges are chipped and the sides are not smooth. The main reason is the quality of the Saw blades, the sharpness of the circular saw blade and the maintenance of the machine. It is seen that the machine are poorly maintained causing all the problems.

To assure sharp & smooth edges, one must have a good quality saw blade sharpening machine. The tools should be sharpened frequently and with great precision. It is experienced that the cutting is smooth when the saw blade is new.Panel-Cutting02

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The quality of cutting deteriorates on re-sharpening of the saw blade. One should confirm that the resin deposits on the blades are removed before sharpening, otherwise it will spoil the Diamond grinding wheel.

It is seen that the cutting is not smooth while using a simple panel saw, as the board is not uniformly pressed. If a uniform pressure from the top is applied then the cutting & the edge is smooth. This will improve the finish of the final product. This can be done by the use of magnetic feather board. In case of large machines like beam saw a top pressure bar is provided to assure a smooth finish cut.

Movement of sized panels

After sizing the panels are moved to other machine for next operation like edge banding/boring etc. It is observed that the edges & corners are damaged during movement of the material.Panel-Cutting03Proper Precautions should be taken to avoid this by using trolley, cart or conveyer either idle or auto.

The machines are so placed that there is a train of idle rollers connecting the in line process machines. This will reduce the material handling and the damages. A waste board is used as carrier board on which the boards are stacked on the idle conveyer. This will protect the finished panels.

In order to save the handling of the boards in-line beam saw is used for cutting of the boards. The boards are fed to first machine which produces the bars of required width and the bunch of the bars are transported by conveyer to other beam saw which is in line of the first machine, for length cutting of the bars. Thus boards are not touched or handled manually till finally finished. Independent pusher bars are used in the second machine in order to cut the bars in different lengths in one pass.

Return conveyer is the best solution for Edge banding machine.

Panel Edging

All the sized panels need to be edge covered with edges of PVC, ABS, Melamine, Veneer and solid wood. The glue pot temperature and the side pressure are very important for good finish. A pre-milling head eliminates the defects of sawing and removes the chipping if any. This guarantees a defect free edge banding.

Panel-Cutting04 Panel-Cutting05 Panel-Cutting06The common defects seen in edge banding are thick, un-even glue line, rough trimming, chatter marks, rough end rounding etc. The gluepot temperature should be as specified by glue manufacturer. Higher glue temperature deteriorates the bonding and lower temperature makes the glue line thick. Transparent/pigmented glue should be used to reduce the visibility of the glue line. Laser activators assures a very thin glue line.

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The tooling of end cutting and trimming should be properly sharpened and replaced after specific time cycle. Blunt tooling makes rough trimming and with chatter marks. The copying wheels should me maintained clean, as dirt on it will replicate the shape. The scrapping cutter should be properly honed to assure smooth finish. Any defect on the scrapping tool will produce rough profile that is very difficult to rectify. Good buffing wheels with proper solvent guarantees fine edge finish.

In cold season the edge banding tapes become hard and is difficult to use it comfortably. Heaters are employed on the in-feed fence to heat the board & edge banding tape.

Panel-Cutting08For small workshops portable edge banding machine is suitable. It calls for uniform pressure while working otherwise uneven glue line is seen. The machine is also useful for curved and shaped panels.

A factory with higher production and large shaped worktop need an automatic Profile Edge banding Machine. The worktop is rotating and the edge banding head is tracing the top.

Author

Mr. Shanti Mansabdar, a Chartered Engineer, has a vast practical knowledge and 25-years experience in wood-based industries. His wide range of professional experience include production & development of variety of wooden products, from furniture to cabinetry, guitars, wooden titles, etc.

His firm offers consultancy services for new as well as existing woodworking factories, along with upgrading & re-engineering programs for the woodworking & joinery factories. Low cost automation & elimination of unwanted process & solutions to avoid production loss are key expert services.

The client list of woodworking & joinery factories extends from Dubai, Qatar, Muscat, Kuwait & Saudi Arabia.