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Beginners edgebanding questions12/9
Long time lurker in these forums, first time poster.
New to the industry (sort of... long time carpenter, built my own kitchen, impressed people in my circle of friends, now attempting to branch out into cabinetmaking as a side business to my day job).
I've been fortunate enough to pick up an edgebander at a steal of a deal (Virutex eb-135), and it works well for my purposes, but it came with very poor documentation, and I have some questions, not really about the machine, more about banders in general.
1.) How often should I clean the glue pot/replace the glue? Obviously as this is a side job, I am mostly working with small batches of banding (a few cupboards at a time, maybe a kitchen).
2.) I've read about the stick method for cleaning the pot, but how do I clean the tube that feeds the roller? Do I just remove the glue (with the sticks), heat it up again and let the bit that's in the tube run back into the pot? Again, the instruction manual is fairly... abbreviated when it comes to cleaning and maintenance.
3.) The bander came with a bag of glue which is coming up on it's expiry date in Feburary of 2020. It had been stored in the bag which was open to the air (I assume, because that's how I received it). Should I just toss it and start a new bag? Are there any visual indications in the pot or on the panel to indicate the glue is done? Or will the banding stick initially and end up failing down the road, causing me hassles?
4.) How hard should the banding be to pull off the panel when I do a pull test to check coverage? Should I expect it to destroy the panel edge when I pull it? Or just pull some fibres out of the chipboard core? I'm just not sure exactly what I am looking for, being used to iron on banding that seems to fall off when you look at it the wrong way.
And can anyone suggest a good resource for these sorts of queries? A website or reference manual or something? Unfortunately edgebanders aren't really part of the DIY or hobby woodworker scene, so it's not like there's a tonne of websites out there with advice or guidance.
Just looking to get the most out of the bander and make sure it lasts (the glue pot, roller and tube have all been replaced from the dealer I bought it from, because the last owner was fairly hard on the machine).
No bander aficionado here but from my brief knowledge,
1. It will be difficult to say how often to clean. How often do you use, do you keep the bander covered/clean/dust? It would seem with very little use you'd have to clean when the glue in the pot hits expiration, hard to tell.
2. No idea
3. From everything I have ever been told/read, if the glue is kept covered/clean its likely good. Open bag, dust, not sealed up, probably best to trash it.
4. We run a cartridge bander and you will struggle to pull the banding off with vise grips though a lot of that depends on many factors. Substrate, how your cutting your parts, how quickly you band after cutting, and so on. Again, there is no single rule. MDF core hangs on like crazy, PB less, VC a bit more.
It would seem to me starting out you'd ditch the old glue and start new unless you feel very comfortable about the unused pellets you got with the machine.
If you want to cut some teeth and burn up some free material while you work out the kinks build a bunch of shop cabs. Melamine is about as cheap as it comes. If the glue is getting crispy best to burn it in your own shop as a test.
1.) Clean it out now and start with what you know to be good clean glue. Take note of the color, it will darken if its cooked.
2.) Stick method works well to get the majority of the glue out. I usually scrape what else I can out when the glue is at about 150C. Cooler than that and its too hard, much warmer and it just falls off the scraper. Only use wood to scrape the gluepot.
3.) Old glue will perform with sporadic results. Sometimes fine, some will just not stick. Go ahead and get a new bag. I've had much better luck with Dorus than with Jowat.
4.) It should peel fibers off the panel. 99 percent of what we do is pvc on particleboard core. This may vary based on what youre running.
Thanks everyone who replied! I seriously appreciate the time taken, as I'm sure you're all busy people.
My bander is a fairly low speed, low temp deal (4 m/min, 392F max temp). Jowatherm 280.30 is the recommended glue from Jowat... anyone have any idea what the corresponding Dorus glue would be?
I think I am going to throw out the glue that came with the machine, as it's not even on the recommended glue list, and does not fit the specifications of the bander (Jowat 288.60). It works, but the bond is not as strong as I imagine it should be (nor as strong as I'd like it to be on something I'm selling to someone else, and hoping to not have to service).
Also, for anyone in Ontario, Canada specifically (if there is anyone), where do you get your glue?? All of the suppliers I have used for melamine sell the two common types of Jowat (288.60 and 280.30), and that's it.
Not sure your low temp. We are only about 10 degrees higher. I would think the Dorus 217 is the standard mid all around. We run Jowat (but cartridge) and never an issue.
Wurth has Doellken 217 if you have access to them.
Thanks for this article! We have the same questions and this really helps!
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