the adhesive technology finally recommended. A popular adhesive in many industries, including furniture and laminated sandwich panels for the RV segment is the hotmelt technology – a fast adhesive solution with immediate position tack that does not require any further fixation of the parts.
In principle, it is necessary to differentiate between thermoplastic hotmelt and reactive hotmelt. Thermoplastic hotmelt is a non-reactive adhesive that becomes liquid at high temperatures above 130°C to make it easy to apply and stick parts together quickly. However, for items such as sandwich panels and furniture for areas exposed to high temperatures, like kitchens, there would be the risk of low resistance to heat. For these situations, the reactive hotmelt is more resistant to high temperatures and, therefore, more durable.
The working principle of reactive hotmelt is similar to the thermoplastic hotmelt explained above, as it is also applied once it has been heated and melted but it uses an additional chemical reaction to build a strong connection that cannot be opened again once it is cross-linked. This is quite a popular choice for sandwich panel construction for RV OEMs in North America, whereas European manufacturers mainly prefer to use liquid moisture cure products, such as H.B. Fuller’s IcemaTM R 145 grades.
The H.B. Fuller Rakol® and Rapidex® reactive hotmelt products are used for flat lamination processes to create safe, durable, high quality furniture, flooring, doors and window products. For the process of edge banding in RV furniture production, there are both thermoplastic and reactive hotmelt products with heat resistance ranging from 75°C to 140°C in use.
Throughout its history, H.B. Fuller has built upon its strong knowledge by continuous innovation. Its scientists are always searching for new technologies that can help improve a customer’s operations, product applications and finished goods.
RV OEMs using hotmelt adhesive from H.B. Fuller include well-known brands across the global RV market as well as independent single producers, in major markets like the USA, Germany, France, Italy, UK and Slovenia. As part of its growth strategy, H.B. Fuller is now also better positioned to meet the increasing demand from the Australian and upcoming Chinese RV markets.
With more than 6,000 employees, 72 productions sites and 38 technology centres globally, H.B. Fuller has the power of a truly global adhesive provider with local expertise in each market it serves, and is continually undertaking huge amounts of R&D all over the world.
The three dedicated teams that specialize in the RV industry for the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific regions benefit from being part of a global support capability and add customer value by deeply understanding local challenges, priorities and processes inside out.