Demystifying Postforming & Edgebanding
This guide briefs some of the terms in the manufacturing process.
1. Machine Pressed vs Hand Pressed Sheets
Depending on your vendor's capacity, the laminates are hand pressed or machine pressed over the plywood.
- Hand Pressing - The plywood and laminates are cut as required, laminates are glued (commonly used adhesive is Fevicol), and pasted over the plywood.
- Machine Pressing - The laminate is pressed over the plywood using machines in the factory. There are two types of Machine Pressing. Machine Pressing has a better life when compared to the hand pressing. Hand pressing sometimes will result in uneven finish and formation of bubbles between the laminate and the plywood
"Postformed" literally means "formed after being laminated" to the plywood or any other substrate. Postforming is a process where laminates are applied to a plywood/MDF or any other substrate with specifically formed edges, and the laminate can be rolled over the edges to create a single, unbroken laminate face.
The postformed edges are not sharp and have a nice rounded finish. Typically the vendors that manually press the laminates take the plywood to the factory and get it postformed. This would cost a little more price than the regular finish. Since the laminate has to be bent to create a postformed surface, the thickness of the laminate used is 0.6mm for the postformed surface.
When the plywood is cut, the plywood will have a raw edge. If the raw edge is not covered, apart from the bad looks and the cause for scratches, moisture can seep in making the plywood warp or lumpy. The raw edges are covered with a narrow strip of material called edge band, and the process is called Edge Banding. The thickness of the edge band varies from 0.5mm to 2mm with a slight variation in the price.The price of 2mm edge band is 3-4 times higher than 0.5mm edge band.
From Wikipedia -
Edge Banding is the name of both a process and an associated narrow strip of material used to create durable and aesthetically pleasing trim edges of the laminated ply. It is used to cover the exposed sides (edges other than the postformed one) of the plywood, giving a better appearance.
There are 3 types of edgebanding.
- Manual - The edge band is pressed over the edges manually. This typically happens when the cutting happens on the site
- Semi-Manual - This type of banding happens on small factories. The band is pasted using machine, but are filed manually
- Through Fit (Fully Machine) - This edgebanding is done completely by machine.