Powder for non-metal substrates
IFS PureClad is an industry changing new line of powder coatings to provide a stronger, safer, better finishing solution for heat sensitive products like engineered and natural wood materials.
Imagine being able to apply a smooth, flexible, tough powder coating to heat sensitive substrates. You want the finish, the protection and environmental benefits, but substrates like MDF and wood are not going to do well in the oven, right? Traditionally, yes, but IFS PureClad changes that. No longer the stuff of dreams, IFS PureClad will deliver all the benefits of powder coating - including a gorgeous finish, a world class sustainability footprint, and technical excellence - to non-metal substrates.
IFS is proud to introduce PureClad powder coatings for alternative substrates. The product of countless hours of R&D investment and collaboration with allied suppliers dedicated to advancing powder coating beyond metal, PureClad incorporates breakthrough solutions which together set the stage for a new revolution in finishing for engineered wood products like MDF and HDF, many natural wood species, as well as other materials like fiberglass composites. It can be used as a coating finish for bathroom or kitchen cabinets, any kind of laminate cabinets.
The opportunities are endless, and IFS PureClad powder coatings can be used on a huge array of end use applications, which include, but are not limited to, cabinetry, furniture, residential cladding, moldings, and wood/fiberglass doors.
The Environmentally Responsible Choice
Our commitment to deliver the environmentally responsible choice is clear – it’s part of our mission and part of what we do every day. IFS PureClad is an environmental friendly coating solution for heat sensitive substrates that not only delivers technical excellence but contains no harmful VOC emissions, boasts an impressive carbon footprint, can be reclaimed and reused or recycled and, as it cures at lower temperatures, it reduces energy consumption. What's more, no hazardous waste is created in either manufacture or application.
Color is important to any product, from creating a mood to defining a brand. So color is important to us. Cabinet white is the industry standard. We get it and we've got it! But IFS PureClad is also available in a range of colors including various RALs, neutrals and brighter shades. What's more, PureClad powders can be formulated to achieve a variety of textures/effects that other finishing options simply cannot achieve, providing designers and consumers with a myriad of options, and manufacturers with the ability to differentiate with unique aesthetics. Courtesy of the IFS team of color matching experts, custom color matching is also available. Talk to your IFS PureClad representative for more details.
As well as excellent technical performance, a first class environmental footprint, and great aesthetics, IFS PureClad powder coatings come with the unparalleled service IFS is known for. At the heart of everything we do, unparalleled service comes as standard. Our customer focused, solution forward team will make sure you have the support you need to use PureClad® powder coatings to achieve its full potential. Responsiveness, expertise, reliability and customization are the pillars of our service mission and we will ensure you benefit from all of them.
Contact the IFS PureClad team direct for details!
Revolutionary Performance in Powders for Non-Metal Substrates
The IFS PureClad range offers a wide choice of low cure powder chemistries that will deliver outstanding technical performance. Excellent adhesion; scratch, mar and peel resistance, flexibility and exterior weathering are all easily achieved with IFS PureClad. Our R&D experts have crafted a range of formulations that deliver unprecedented performance of powder for wood, MDF, fiberglass and beyond.
It's not just about the powder performance either. The entire application process is designed with excellence in mind.
Unlike traditional low-cure chemistry, with PureClad you don’t have to compromise on production speed, efficiency, or technical performance. PureClad powders exhibit excellent temperature stability and can be safely stored at room temperatures. They are also easy to apply, displaying excellent flow, which results in a beautiful finish. The cure process, which takes as little as 4 minutes in a catalytic IR cure oven at only 265°F, is sufficiently low to accommodate standard MDF as well as many natural wood materials, as well as the flexibility necessary to accommodate the deformation of wood that occurs overtime, especially in humid environments with significant temperature variation, such as kitchens and bathrooms. What’s more, in most applications, one layer of PureClad powder is sufficient. The process of coating and curing is completed quickly - in only about 7-10 minutes – an extremely favorable comparison liquid paints, which most often require multiple layers that must be cured and sanded before the next layer can be applied.
Tough, flexible, hard working coatings are important and the table below indicates just some of the excellent performance benefits PureClad delivers.
|Resistance to cracking & peeling||Wide range of colors||Fast, low temperature cure|
|Outdoor durability||Gloss/effect options||Minimal waste|
|Chip and Mar Resistance||Textures available||Safe for people and the environment|
|Available with anti-microbial properties||Cost effective, robust processing|
Find out more about PureClad powder from the PureClad team!
When a beautiful, smooth powder finish is required, PureClad FFT delivers.
PureClad FFT is our flagship product, a truly groundbreaking technology that delivers the most advanced formulary technology available to the market today
The pioneering technology behind PureClad FFT Allows full cure in as little as 4 minutes at only 265F° in a catalytic IR cure oven, without compromising appearance, performance or storage stability.
IFS PureClad FFT demonstrates exceptional post-cure flexibility, which makes it an ideal solution for finishing wood-based substrates, which tend to shrink and swell in environments with variations in temperature and humidity, such as kitchens and bathrooms.
What else can you expect from PureClad FFT?
- Tough, durable protection.
- Endless customization options: colors, textures, gloss levels.
- Environmentally friendly and safe for everyone involved.
- Ability to evenly coat complex shapes.
- Relatively small shop footprint.
- Maximum production efficiency with high line densities, fast application and curing. Most applications require only a single layer of coating.
- Simple, repeatable finishing process.
- Options that differentiate and add value, such as antimicrobial properties and outdoor durability
- Technical & operational support, from start to finish
Making sure the application process is easy was part of the groundbreaking development work our team of scientists worked on. Along with advances in equipment - application and curing systems - PureClad powders have been designed to make life easy for the coater. We recognize it has to be quick, efficient, easy to work with, easy to apply, and the powder should have good storage stability. IFS PureClad achieves all of this and more.
PureClad achieves full cure at only 265°F in only 4 minutes in a catalytic IR cure oven, which means that many heat-sensitive substrates can now be powder coated without damage; and because the technology comes with excellent flow, we can also achieve full cure in that short amount of time without compromising aesthetic properties. PureClad finishes are tough, durable and have sufficient flexibility to accommodate the tendency of wood-based substrates to flex and shrink over time. For consumers, PureClad finish means that finish on the products they purchase will look and perform exceptionally well over the life of the product. For manufacturers and coaters, PureClad delivers remarkable throughput advantages and improved product quality; with a process that is safe for both employees and the environment.
Applying powder to non-metal substrates requires incredible, fast, low cure powder like IFS PureClad, and a simple process.
It looks something like this:
The above is representative of the processing associated with PureClad FFT technology, with requires the use of a catalytic IR oven.
Catalytic IR emits energy at the high-end of the medium wavelength, which happens to be the “sweet spot” for polymers, in terms of their behavior with respect to the absorption of energy. With conventional heating, a substrate must be heated to the temperature that a powder coating requires to flow and cure (because the powder does not “want” to absorb the energy from heated air). In contrast, with catalytic IR, a powder coating does not rely on the heat of the substrate, because it readily absorbs catalytic IR energy. In short, catalytic IR makes it possible to heat powder to the temperature if needs to flow and cure, without subjecting the substrate to the same high temperatures.
Because time and temperature are reduced by such a degree with the combination of PureClad FFT chemistry and catalytic IR, moisture content in wood materials, which had historically presented only a challenge to be overcome, has now become a solution to another problem – how to apply powder to non-conductive substrates. Rather than solving the problem of moisture by eliminating it (as with conventional curing), we now have the ability to condition wood materials to achieve an optimal moisture content (typically, 4-5% is ideal), which can be achieved predictably and inexpensively by controlling the relative humidity of the environment in which materials are stored). Because the cure process allows us to limit the heat of the substrate (eliminating the threat of outgassing), we then use the conductive nature of the moisture that remains in the wood to ground it, allowing for electrostatic application of the powder coating.
The great thing about this type of application is that developments on the equipment side mean that PureClad powders can be applied by any size operation. In Europe for example, early adopters range from coaters that finish a few dozen cabinet fronts in a day, to one that, on any given day, will powder coat five to ten thousand day beds and bathroom vanities.
The good news is it does not require a huge application line footprint, so it's perfect for coaters who recognize the enormous potential in this process, and have the flexibility, creativity and willingness to adapt to the various commercial scenarios this will bring!
For a more "animated" look at how the application process works, check out our .
We shall overcome…
A lot of time, money and R&D investment has gone into the development of IFS PureClad, the groundbreaking new powder coating for non-metal substrates. There were many challenges to overcome, from the historical issues around powder coating substrates like wood and MDF, to ensuring that the issues around the current technologies in use – like thermofoil, laminate and liquid paint, are overcome.
Check out some of the key issues, and what we overcame!
Overcoming the historical issues of powder coating non metal substrates
In a nutshell, the history of attempts to advance powder coating beyond metal is the story of a struggle to get over a handful of challenges that together, had to be overcome for success.
Briefly summarizing the issues, we are left with five areas of concern.
First up, achieving cure, without compromising aesthetics or performance, at temperatures sufficiently low to avoid damaging heat sensitive materials like engineered and natural wood during the cure process.
Another issue, particularly with respect to powder coating engineered wood-based substrates like MDF, was to mitigate the effects of moisture content, which effects deposition during electrostatic application and can result in outgassing during cure.
Yet another technical hurdle centered on sorting out how to uniformly apply powder to non-conductive or minimally conductive substrates; as well as materials which conductivity can vary considerably across the surface of the substrate.
If all of that were not enough, we also had to understand that wood-based materials don’t behave themselves after finishing. These materials shrink and swell over the life of finished products as they absorb and release moisture; and the coating has to be sufficiently flexible to accommodate this tendency without cracking or peeling.
Finally, because these challenges required solutions from multiple disciplines, it is necessary to align the community of allied suppliers (raw material and powder coating manufacturers, application equipment and oven suppliers, and coaters) to provide the market with the complete, robust powder coating alternative to incumbent coating processes and technologies.
Luckily, PureClad overcomes each of these issues. Much formulation research as well as developments in application and curing systems, eventually led to IFS PureClad. PureClad cures at 265F in a catalytic IR oven for only a few minutes, and this low temperature combined with the catalytic IR oven capability overcomes the issue of damage to heat sensitive substrates. PureClad powder delivers a beautiful, smooth finish, with the flexibility to adapt to the shrinking/swelling issues these substrates display, and an outgassing forgiving formula that can be uniformly applied. Thanks to work done by allied suppliers, not only is the powder available, but so are the means to apply and cure it without requiring a huge amount of space.
Check out our for a 2 minute view of the application process.
Overcoming the issues incumbent technologies suffer from
As well as solving the issues historically associated with powder for non-metal substrates, IFS PureClad also overcomes many of the problems and issues associated with other technologies currently being used on cabinetry, furniture and more
Thermofoil is a popular choice used on cabinetry, as compared with liquid paints it’s quick to apply, the material cost is pretty cheap and it gives a uniform look. There are plenty of design options, it’s a low maintenance finish for the home owner and it’s also chip or crack resistant.
IFS PureClad will deliver on each of these advantages, boasting excellent chip and crack resistance, and a quick and efficient application cycle that can deliver a huge array of colors and also special effects like textures.
However, Thermofoil does not have good UV or heat resistance. When it’s exposed to these types of elements the Thermofoil will yellow and become brittle. It’s also prone to delamination, especially if exposed to heat/humidity, which is clearly an issue for use in kitchens or bathrooms. There are also environmental issues: it causes unnecessary waste, and it does not easily degrade, and when it does, it gives off dioxins & phthalates.
IFS PureClad can overcome all of these problems! As a thermosetting powder, it’s tough and durable – not brittle – regardless of the environment it’s in. It also boasts all the environmental advantages of powder coatings.
Formica is another alternative that is also quicker to apply than liquid paint and has a reasonably low material cost. It does have good stain resistance, and of course, it’s easy to clean and wipe down. It delivers good scratch and mar resistance and is available in a great choice of aesthetic options
IFS PureClad has great chemical and stain resistance and the smooth, durable surface is easy to maintain and wipe down and it scores top marks for scratch and mar resistance.
The downside of laminate? It has a tendency to crack and peel in high-humidity, warm environment. The edges require edge banding and there are aesthetic issues; only slight contouring is possible, and seams are unavoidable. It also has a relatively short service-life – only 10-15 years - and cannot be recycled.
IFS PureClad overcomes each of these issues!
The other competing technology is solvent borne liquid paint.
There are a lot of reasons why powder has the advantage over liquid paint, however in the era of sustainable design, making the environmentally responsible choice has to be near the top.
Solvents – and therefore VOC’s - are bad. That’s simple. What’s more, VOC abatement is expensive - and the penalties are even more expensive! Add to that the fact that the opaque paints used for wood/MDF average around 33% solids and the rest is waste. That’s a really poor utilization rate as well as being bad for the environment.
Talking of waste, and efficiencies, in a typical high-production cabinet front coating operation, transfer efficiencies average 50-65%. Again, the rest is waste.
Opaque liquid finishes require 4-6 coats (depending on the color chosen), with sanding on every coat except the topcoat. This removes 4-6% of the paint each time, and in the best-case scenarios (excluding UV, which is very limited), each coat needs 10-15 minutes of oven time to cure. That’s a really long, expensive, application process with high energy usage.
IFS PureClad comes with all the sustainability advantages powder coatings deliver, as well as the technical excellence required.