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FLEXO Magazine : July 2009
TECHNOLOGIES & TECHNIQUES Here, a slow build to the ultimate adhesive bond allows you the option of reapplying or repositioning the graphic. Another example: Glass bottle labels are often dispensed at a high rate of speed. A high-tack adhesive can help ensure that the leading edge of the label adheres upon fi rst contact with the bottle. High-tack adhesives are also of value when applying labels and decals to low-surface energy plastics. Here, the high-tack adhesive insures that the decoration will remain applied as the part continues through subsequent manufacturing and distribution processes. High tack is equally important with the use of low-surface energy plastics among OEM design and production engineers for a host of products – ranging from vehicle components to children’s toys to sound-damping materials – has upped the demand for high-performance adhesives, required in such harsh environments as automotive and aerospace applications. Low-tack has its advantages, too, especially when the adhesive has to be removable. Low-tack characteristics can sometimes mean low peel, the measure of the de-bonding force. That is the force required to remove an adhesive from a surface. Peel readings are generally taken at angles of 90° and 180°. Used to measure the force required to overcome an adhesive bond, the peel test is heavily infl uenced by the material being bonded to the surface. In fi lms, for instance, both caliper and tensile strength will have an impact on the measured adhesion. A peel measurement allows application designers to determine whether an adhesive will be able to resist an anticipated force that may work against the adhesive bond. For example, an outdoor graphic may face high winds. To remain intact, the strength of the adhesive bond must exceed that of the anticipated force of the wind. For example, a maker of commercial-grade pressurewashers was trying to determine why labels were coming off and not resisting the pressurized blasts of water and cleaning liquids during use. The pressure sensitive fi lm and adhesive supplier not only helped the OEM choose a different, more durable label facestock material, but it also advised that in order for the label to remain intact, the strength of the adhesive bond needed to exceed the force of the pressurized water and cleaning chemicals. Consequently, the manufacturer was also able to avoid potential after-sale liability issues instigated by warning and safety labels falling off. ■ ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Philip Emery is director of applied surface technologies for FLEXcon. He has more than 25 years of experience in the pressure-sensitive adhesive industry and is a member of Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry. A frequent contributor to industry publications, Emery holds a Bachelor of Science degree and a Master’s degree in marketing. FLEXcon is an ISO 9001:2000 global manufacturer of self-adhesive fi lm products for applications that include outdoor and indoor advertising, primary labels, product identifi cation and safety/hazard labels, bar coded labels, and bonding/mounting. FLEXcon’s DPM Aply 1000 is a VBS Supreme product that uses a robust fi lm and a premium, high-shear adhesive for bubble-free label graphics in narrow-web label applications. For more information about this and other products from FLEXcon, call 508-885-8200, or visit www.FLEXcon.com. direct laser engraving. The argument for Stork Helios 6010 Direct Laser Engraving System www. f le xography. org JULY 2009 FLEXO 29
Sustainable Spring 2009